Male’ Maldives, 23rd October 2022 – The AirAsia X Group (AAX) relaunch strategy continues to gain strong momentum as the airline remains focused on its medium haul markets in the short term, where proven demand is strongest. The AAX Group has announced that it is increasing its Malaysia AirAsia X (D7) flights to 44 times weekly across 10 routes, and is expanding its Thai AirAsia X (XJ) operations to fly 22 weekly services across five routes in the next two months.
Recently, AAX launched direct services from Kuala Lumpur to South Korea (Seoul-Incheon) and India (New Delhi) and announced the resumption of services to Australia (Sydney, Melbourne, Perth), New Zealand (Auckland), Japan (Tokyo-Haneda and Sapporo-Chitose), with latest confirmed new routes to Saudi Arabia (Jeddah) and Taipei starting November. Thai AirAsia X has launched services from Bangkok to Japan (Osaka and Tokyo-Narita), South Korea (Seoul-Incheon), and is preparing to launch new direct routes to Australia (Melbourne and Sydney) and Japan (Sapporo-Chitose) from early December.
As it returns to the skies, AAX remains committed to recalling all furlough pilots and cabin crew. AAX is thrilled to be in a position to welcome its Allstars back and confirms that all furloughed pilots and retrenched cabin crew will have the opportunity to be back in the sky by December this year. Since the pandemic, it has already reactivated 175 pilots and 285 cabin crew including rehiring 131 cabin crew who were retrenched during the pandemic.
Acting Group CEO of AAX Tony Fernandes said, “The most important thing for me is that we can confirm today that we are bringing back our staff whom we had to let go during Covid. Many pilots and cabin crew are already back in service, but as we continue to grow in line with huge pent up demand, all of our AAX pilots who are still on furlough will return to the flight deck, together with the retrenched cabin crew by December this year. In fact, we are now retraining the third batch of rehired cabin crew ahead of strong forecast demand for medium haul air travel.”
Furthermore, Fernandes shared his excitement on AAX’s steady return, noting its plan to focus on its most popular and profitable medium haul destinations first in the short term as these have historically proven successful. Through this strategy, AAX will be operating at an optimal frequency to its core routes to minimise its costs and deliver the best fares in the market to customers whilst also maximising its revenue.
CEO of Malaysia AAX Benyamin Ismail said: “Finally, the world borders are reopening and we are ready to fly high once again. Currently, we are operating with four widebody A330 aircraft and as we continue to grow we expect to be operating up to 13 aircraft by the first quarter of 2023 to meet strong and growing demand for the best value, medium haul flights.”
He noted that they will be adding more destinations and increasing flight frequencies to popular routes starting from December this year. For instance, daily services between Kuala Lumpur and Seoul (Incheon) will increase to 53 flights weekly. This is possible because medium-haul air travel is recovering rapidly.
Although medium haul is AAX’s first priority, it will be focusing on launching some long haul destinations such as London, Dubai and Istanbul, which will be announced in the future.