It’s RM499 to fly to London on AirAsia X

Travel News November 26th, 2008

LONDON: It’s £99 or RM499 one-way – that’s the much-awaited opening fare of AirAsia X’s latest London Stansted-Kuala Lumpur route.

Malaysians flying to London will also pay RM499 for the return flight while travellers from London going to KLIA will pay £99 (RM541) for the return ticket.

Online bookings opened at 8pm Tuesday (Malaysian time) for the five-times-a-week direct flights which will begin in March.

Also on offer are premium seats at £549 or RM1,999. The initial bookings are for the travel period from March 11 till Oct 24 next year.

The AirAsia X flights will use Airbus A340 planes which will have 286 economy and 30 premium seats.

AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman-Rani made the announcement during the route launch at London’s County Hall featuring a special performance by five-member British girl band, The Saturdays.

“The London-Kuala Lumpur route is the realisation of a long-held ambition to open up affordable access between Malaysia and Europe for both the Asean and European communities,” AirAsia Group CEO Datuk Seri Tony Fernandes said.

Fernandes said with the airline’s comprehensive route network, the opportunity for Londoners and Europeans to explore Asean has never been greater.

“This new route will benefit all of Asean as it will encourage more economic and tourism activities, bringing in more revenue and creating job opportunities,” he said.

Azran described the London route as a significant achievement, allowing those who had always wanted to travel between Europe and Asean to achieve their dream at an affordable price.

Stansted Airport’s commercial and development director Nick Barton, who finalised discussions with AirAsia X, hailed the launch as a major milestone for low-cost, long-haul air travel around the world.

“This is set to be a hugely popular link for business and leisure travellers seeking affordable long-haul travel options,” he added.

The latest route is the first step for AirAsia to realise its European aspirations and boost Kuala Lumpur as the regional aviation hub and gateway into Asean, China and Australia.

With the launch, Europeans can now see more of Asia for less by tapping into the airline’s network to popular destinations such as Phuket, Borneo, Bali, Angkor Wat and Ho Chi Minh city.

To date, AirAsia X – the long-haul affiliate of AirAsia – flies to the Gold Coast, Perth and Melbourne in Australia, Hangzhou in China and now London, bringing the Asean brand to a global stage.

Stansted is Britain’s third busiest airport, with 22.8 million passengers passing through and many leading low-cost airlines making it their base. Source: TheStar

Malaysia Airlines offers cheaper fares for KL-Singapore route

Travel News November 14th, 2008

SUBANG: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) has slashed its fare for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore route for December to RM199 one-way all-inclusive in a bid to retain market share on the sector which opens up to intense competition on Dec 1.

Once controlled by MAS and rival Singapore Airlines (SIA), this has been the most expensive air sector for a 45-minute flight. Fares are as high as RM900 for a return trip.

“We believe in liberalisation but filling up four million seats a year can be very challenging. If we do not do anything we will lose money on the sector,’’ MAS senior sales general manager Datuk Bernard Francis told StarBiz in an interview yesterday.

The sector has been open to competition since early this year but from Dec 1 low-cost carriers plying the route will be allocated additional frequencies. The liberalisation of the KL-Singapore market is part of a larger agenda to free the skies above Asean to facilitate intra-Asean travel.

Other carriers flying the route are AirAsia, JetstarAsia, Tiger Airways and SilkAir.

The fight for market share will be fierce. Tomorrow, MAS kicks off its “One price, all seats, all flights’’ campaign that ends on Dec 24.

It will offer one-way fares of RM199 ex-KL and S$89 ex-Singapore for travel in December. Fares are inclusive of taxes, fuel surcharges and administrative fees.

“We are offering all seats on the aircraft and bookings must be made at least seven days in advance,’’ Francis said.

Francis said MAS made six to eight daily flights or 100 flights per week.

Come Dec 1, SIA and SilkAir will each operate four flights daily, AirAsia will increase its two daily flights to seven, Tiger will offer five flights from one and JetstarAsia, three from one.

Francis said MAS would continue to review the pricing on the sector and make adjustments when necessary.

MAS yesterday also cut fares for 66 domestic and international destinations under its “all-inclusive low fares goes global” campaign. Source – TheStar

Malaysia Airlines launches All Inclusive Low Fares

Travel News November 13th, 2008

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) is launching its first All Inclusive Low Fares Goes Global sale today for 66 domestic and international destinations.

The fares start from RM63 nett for domestic travel, RM158 nett for Asean and RM472 nett for international destinations.

In a statement here yesterday, MAS said the promotion was held in response to consumers’ requests for all-in prices.

“Our sales for the recent All Inclusive Low Fares showed a 400% increase – clearly demonstrating that customers loved our low fares, transparent pricing and recognise the value of flying five-star,” said MAS senior general manager (Sales) Datuk Bernard Francis.

The promotion, he said, would see 26 additional international destinations with three million seats on offer covering destinations in Malay­sia, Asean, Asia Pacific, South Asia, Australia, the Americas and Europe.

“What we are doing with this latest promotion is to provide nett pricing, making it easier for customers to make their travel decision,” he said, adding that MAS hoped to offer similar all-in low fares for other destinations soon to stimulate travel.

The booking period for the promotion starts today until Nov 30 while the travel period is from Nov 20 to Sept 30 next year.

Log on to www.malaysiaairlines.com to book tickets. Source – TheStar

AirAsia announced NO fuel surcharge and 500,000 free seats

Travel News November 11th, 2008

KUALA LUMPUR: All AirAsia and AirAsia X passengers will now no longer have to pay for the fuel surcharge for all local and international flights.

AirAsia Bhd group chief executive officer Datuk Seri Tony Fernandes said the move – effective Tuesday – would mean that passengers would now only have to pay for the fare, airport tax and administration fee when flying with them.

Fernandes explained that “getting rid of the fuel surcharge” would not affect the base rate of the air fare, but he could not guarantee that the airline would never re-impose the surcharge should world fuel prices skyrocket again.

“We’re not increasing the base rate. It is what it is.

“But if fuel prices shoot up … I’ll be crazy to say I’ll never add the fuel surcharge again. But we will resist for as long as we can,” he told reporters Tuesday after making the announcement here.

The check-in baggage handling fee, however, would be maintained as it was imposed not only because of rising fuel prices earlier this year.

“We did it (in April) for three reasons – fuel prices, to limit the number of luggage, and to be more environmentally-friendly.

“The lighter the plane is, the less emissions it will have,” he said.

Fernandes also announced that beginning Wednesday, the airline would be offering some 500,000 free seats to all AirAsia destinations.

The booking period is until Sunday, and the travel period for the free seats is from June 22 to Oct 24 next year.

“There are two ways to deal with a slow economy. You’ve got to give more value, and you’ve got to stimulate people to travel.

“That’s what we’re doing now,” he said.

On the fuel surcharge, he said that it had previously cost passengers an average of RM47 per person.

Asked how the he planned to deal with the impact by removing the fuel surcharge, he replied:

“Higher load factor and newer initiatives to increase our revenue will help cover it. We’re keeping our 76% load factor, while adding 20% more seats.

“We’ll look at other ways of increasing our revenue. The easiest drug is fuel surcharge but it also destroys the business.”

Also present at the announcement was Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad, who applauded AirAsia’s move.  Source – TheStar

President Obama’s acceptance speech

General News November 5th, 2008

Barack Obama

I think it’s worth for me to keep this copy of Obama’s acceptance speech here. The speech is so inspired and giving me the believe not to be afraid of CHANGE. We need to change for the better and we have to believe that we can do it.

Here’s the prepared transcript of his acceptance speech from the Yahoo News Room:

Remarks of President-Elect Barack Obama-as prepared for delivery
Election Night
Tuesday, November 4th, 2008
Chicago, Illinois

If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.

It’s the answer told by lines that stretched around schools and churches in numbers this nation has never seen; by people who waited three hours and four hours, many for the very first time in their lives, because they believed that this time must be different; that their voice could be that difference.

It’s the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Latino, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled – Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been a collection of Red States and Blue States: we are, and always will be, the United States of America.

It’s the answer that led those who have been told for so long by so many to be cynical, and fearful, and doubtful of what we can achieve to put their hands on the arc of history and bend it once more toward the hope of a better day.

It’s been a long time coming, but tonight, because of what we did on this day, in this election, at this defining moment, change has come to America.
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