AirAsia’s £99 to London

LONDON, 25 NOV: Malaysia’s long-haul budget carrier, AirAsia X, has announced that its London Stansted-Kuala Lumpur service will take off on March 11, 2009, with fares starting from as low as £99 or RM499 each way, with no fuel surcharge!

“Connecting London – Kuala Lumpur for £99” : AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes and AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman-Rani reveals the London – Kuala Lumpur fare in a ceremony held at London’s County Hall.

AirAsia X cabin crew posing against the London Eye. The low-cost long-haul carrier affiliate of AirAsia announces its latest route connecting London and Kuala Lumpur in London on 25 Nov 2008. 

AirAsia X cabin crew on top of a London double-decker bus that is wrapped with AirAsia and AirAsia X branding. AirAsia X, the low-cost long-haul carrier affiliate of AirAsia announces its latest route connecting London and Kuala Lumpur in London on 25 November 2008.

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes (7th from left) and AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman-Rani with the airline’s cabin crew posing next to the London double-decker bus.

AirAsia Group CEO Datuk Seri Tony Fernandes has pledged to knock down the price to as low as £49 (RM271) once they increase the flight frequency to twice daily.

He said AirAsia X’s London-KL route was the realisation of a long-held ambition to open up affordable access between Malaysia and Europe for both Asean and European communities.

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes (left) and AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman-Rani in London for the announcement of AirAsia X’s latest route connecting London and Kuala Lumpur. The launch was held London’s County Hall on 25 Nov 2008. 

For the London sector, AirAsia X will use Airbus A340 for the five times weekly direct flights. All flights will use AirAsia’s X’s newly-purchased-and-delivered Airbus A340 planes which will have 286 economy and 30 premium seats.

AirAsia X cabin crew posing against the London Eye. The low-cost long-haul carrier affiliate of AirAsia announces its latest route connecting London and Kuala Lumpur in London.

Fernandes said bookings would start at midday London time today until November 30 for the travel period of March 11, 2009 to Oct 24, 2009.

AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman-Rani (left) and AirAsia Group CEO Dato’ Sri Tony Fernandes addressing the media in a press conference at London’s County Hall, after announcing the London – Kuala Lumpur route. 

London would be AirAsia X’s 5th international destination after Gold Coast, Perth and Melbourne in Australia as well as Hangzhou in China. It’s affiliate AirAsia Group, which flies short-haul routes in Asia is the region’s first, largest and most profitable low-cost carrier.

www.airasia.com

Photos special thanks to Amazing AirAsia.

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Jetstar ceases KL route

For confirmation, here’s a press statement by Jetstar’s parent company – Qantas: [Click Here] [News 1] [News 2] [News 3]

Jetstar To Cease Flights To Kuala Lumpur From September
By Neville D’Cruz
Bernama Malaysia
6 June 2008

MELBOURNE – – Australian budget airline Jetstar, a subsidiary of Qantas, will withdraw its service from Sydney to Kuala Lumpur from Sept 1, 2008, because of high fuel prices.

Qantas also said that several other services to Asia would be affected.

Malaysia’s charge daffaires in Canberra, Ahmad Fadil Samsuddin, has alerted Malaysians in Australia to the Jetstar decision, saying those who had confirmed their bookings after Sept 1 would be contacted by the airline to make alternative arrangements.

In announcing the changes, Qantas chief executive Geoff Dixon said the Japanese and Southeast Asian markets would be most affected.

“At current fuel prices, the group would lose more than A$100 million operating to Japan under our existing structure,” he said in a statement.

Dixon said flights between Japan and Queensland would still offer a capacity of more than 11,500 seats a week. The Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation said Qantas had targeted the Japan route after years of declining demand.

The number of passengers flying between Melbourne to Japan had been in steady decline since 2004 when total passenger numbers were at 122,000 a year.

Last year, passenger numbers between the two destinations fell from 111,000 to 83,500.

Tourism groups fear North Queensland will be hardest hit by the international route rescheduling which also sees the Cairns/Osaka/Nagoya sector flown by Jetstar being withdrawn.

Qantas’ 14 flights a week from Cairns to Tokyo will be replaced with a daily Jetstar route. A new Jetstar Gold Coast to Tokyo route — five flights weekly — will also be introduced.

Under the changes, Jetstar will withdraw its Sydney to Kuala Lumpur service to free up an A330 plane and replace its existing three times a week A330 service between Sydney and Ho Chi Minh City with five A320 return services on a new Sydney to Darwin and Ho Chi Minh City route.

Jetstar aircraft will replace Qantas on the Perth-Denpasar and Perth-Jakarta routes.

Aeropolis @ KLIA

Courtesy Veritas Architects. 

In a few months time, Malaysia Airports Berhad (MAHB), the operator of the KL International Airport (KLIA) will announce a major transformation plan for KLIA.

KLIA will embark on extensive property development, transforming the airport into a remarkable mixed-use of commercial, tourism and transportation hub called (tentatively) the AEROPOLIS KLIA.

KLIA Aeropolis_1 

The mega-project will be developed around the existing airport on 2,730 acres of land. With this, KLIA will be transformed to be more than just an airport! 

KLIA Aeropolis_2

It will be an international meeting place which includes business parks, logistic parks, industrial estates and “free zones”, retail centres and merchandise marts, ICT complexes, hotels, a theme park, tourism and entertainment centres and an airport residential neighbourhood. 

*** *** ***

Meanwhile, a new masterplan for KLIA (airport) has been shown to the public.

KLIA new plan including Permanent LCCT

       -Picture by forumer Clarence-

Contrast the above plan with the below that was shown at the recent LIMA 2007 aerospace show.

KLIA plan @ LIMA07

       -Picture by forumer ntly1-

This is how KLIA (and Sepang F1 Circuit) looks like today from the air…

KLIA photo from air

And imagine when the whole KLIA gets built-up!

*** *** ***

Finally something from overseas…

Beijing T3

Beijing Capital International Terminal 3, the largest and grandest airport terminal complex ever built will be officially opened this coming March in time for Beijing Olympics 2008.

The future KLIA low-cost carrier terminal

A new low-cost carrier terminal building catering to 30 million passengers a year will be built in three to four years time. It will be much closer to KLIA main terminal compared to the present LCCT.

This terminal will be part of KLIA and will be connected by the Express Rail Link (ERL) train services.

Aerial view of KLIA 

Aerial view of KLIA components, by forumer Cattivo. [Satelitte should be Satellite] 

Hopefully there’ll be an aerotrain connecting this new LCCT to KLIA main terminal as well.

In the meantime, the present LCCT will be expanded to cater up to 15 million passengers annually.

Also, Malaysia Airports might want to built a second satellite building for the main terminal before 2015 as KLIA may sooner or later reach its limit.

(The initial proposal of KLIA was to able to handle 100 million passengers a year, thus having 4 satellite terminal buildings and Main Terminals of A and B. See picture above.)

AirAsia X is ready to fly!

AirAsia X's leased plane

AirAsia X’s first leased plane – the Airbus A330-300. [Photo courtesy of MalaysiaWings]

Affiliated to Asia’s largest low-cost carrier – AirAsia, AirAsia X (operated by Fly Asian Xpress) is ready to fly out of KLIA this September 8!

Australia will most likely be its first destination. The first long-haul low-cost carrier in South-east Asia (excluding Hong Kong) will either fly to Avalon, near Melbourne or to Adelaide.

A day later on September 9, Jetstar – the low-cost subsidiary of Qantas – will start its operations from Sydney to KL.

Indeed, this will be a new chapter in Asia’s aviation.

KL’s proposed rail network

According to the newspaper today, the government has approved the proposed alignment for the new light rail transit (LRT) line in the Klang Valley.

Indeed a good news to all Klang Valley folks!

— Let us refresh back on this development —

Somewhere in April 2006, KLIG (the holding company of KL Monorail) proposes this…

 KL Monorail's proposal

 The 4 new lines proposed by KL Monorail are:

1. The Petaling Jaya Line (21km) : from Damansara Perdana to – Bandar Utama – Damansara utama – integration with Kelana Jaya LRT – Lembah Subang – integration with KTM Subang Jaya – Subang Jaya, integration with another new line called SJ Line – USJ

2. The Subang Jaya Line (18km) : from KL Sentral Monorail to – MidValley – Taman Desa – OUG – Puchong – USJ – integration with new line called PJ Line

3. The Sungai Buloh Line (13km) : from Bandar Utama to – Bandar Sri Damansara – Kepong – Segambut – Titiwangsa, integration with present KL Monorail and LRT line

4. The Cheras Line (13km) : from Ampang Line LRT extended to – Bandar Tun Razak – Plaza Phoenix – Cheras Perdana – Bandar Tun Hussein Onn

Later, Syarikat Prasarana Negara Berhad (SPNB), the holding company under the Ministry of Finance tabled its version of public transportation plan in the Klang Valley.

SPNB LRT Lines

The government announced in the Budget 2007 in September last year that a new line from Kota Damansara to Cheras would be built and 2 existing lines are to be extended – from Kelana Jaya to USJ and from Sri Petaling to Puchong.

— —

SSC Forumers found a very interesting rendering on how KL rail networks may look like in the year 2020…

KL's visionary rail systems 

With all the current proposed lines built (which include an extension from the present Kelana Jaya Line to USJ and a new line from Kota Damansara to Cheras), there might already be a proposal for another three additional lines to be built in the future.

The first being an inner circular lope in KL city itself starting from KL Sentral to – Tasik Perdana – Mahameru – Titiwangsa – Jalan Tun Razak – Ampang Embassy Row – Kampung Pandan – Cochrane – Jalan Chan Sow Lin – Dewan Bahasa – Istana Negara – back to KL Sentral.

The second being an outer circular lope around KL suburbs starting from One Utama to – Kepong – Jinjang – Jalan Ipoh – (existing Sentul to Sri Petaling Line) Sentul – Masjid Jamek – Hang Tuah – Pudu – Miharja – Cheras – Salak Selatan – Sungai Besi – Sri Petaling – (extension) Jalan Puchong – PJ Old Town – Assunta – PJ New Town (State) – Seksyen 19 – SS2 – Taman Tun Dr Ismail – back to One Utama

A third line might be from Pusat Bandar Puchong to – Kinrara – OUG and Kuchai Lama – Desa Petaling – Sungai Besi – Jalan Istana – Loke Yew – Pudu – Thamby Dollah – Kia Peng – KLCC – Kampung Baru – Ayer Panas – Genting Klang – Setapak – Sri Gombak – UIA campus in Gombak.

— —

For now I just hope that the government will fulfill their promises to the people. Extend our present rail network to more and MORE areas… quickly!!! 

Proposed new LRT trains 

And recently, the government under SPNB bought many new trains to increase the present capacity on the Kelana Jaya Line. Soon we may get to travel on a 4-car train like the above picture!