AirAsia, the world's best low cost airline for nine consecutive years today celebrated two international inaugural flights into Johor Bahru's Senai International Airport, from Macao and Kolkata, India.
The two new international flights are scheduled to depart today from their respective countries, and the inaugural flight from Macao will be received by YB Datuk Tee Siew Kiong, Johor Tourism, Domestic Trade and Consumerism Committee Chairman; Abdul Malik bin Hj Ismail, Director of Tourism Johor; Md Derick Basir, Chief Executive Officer of Senai Airport Terminal Services Sdn Bhd; Zamani Bin Mohd Rafique, Director of Government Relations, AirAsia Berhad and Spencer Lee, Head of Commercial, AirAsia Berhad.
The seven times weekly direct flights from Macao and five times weekly direct flights from Kolkata are the fourth and fifth new routes launched by the airline into its Southern Malaysia hub this year, after Johor Bahru-Jakarta, Johor Bahru-Kuala Terengganu and Johor Bahru-Langkawi earlier this year – which further solidified its commitment in expanding the hub, besides adding two more A320 aircrafts to be parked at Senai International Airport by the end of this year.
Spencer Lee, Head of Commercial, AirAsia Berhad said, "AirAsia is pleased to connect more international cities into Johor Bahru and increase the number of existing direct flights to further boost foreign tourist arrivals into the southern state of Malaysia – in line with our long term plan to grow the hub and the state government's plan of improving direct connectivity".
"By adding new international link to the state, we hope to attract more foreign investments into Johor Bahru, subsequently turning the state into a high-value regional tourism destination. Since 2010, AirAsia has flown about 12 million guests in and out of Johor Bahru and this success would not be possible without the continuous support and cooperation from the Johor state government and Senai International Airport. We are very thankful to them and look forward to further strengthen this hub and grow our connectivity into Johor Bahru with their support."
Mr. Md Derick Basir, Chief Executive Officer of Senai Airport Terminal Services Sdn Bhd said, "We have been working closely with AirAsia for quite some time to develop these two new routes for Senai Airport. We are very pleased and excited that it has finally materialized. The direct connectivity between the two cities and Johor Bahru will be good for Johor and Iskandar Malaysia as it will further spur economic and tourism activities in the state. We are also anticipating to capture more travelers from Mainland China and Hong Kong through Macao, as well as to tap the travelers from other metropolitan cities in India, Bangladesh and Nepal by linking to Kolkata."
AirAsia currently operates 161 weekly flights one way into Johor Bahru's Senai International Airport. In addition to Macao and Kolkata, the airline also flies from Johor Bahru to Bangkok, Guangzhou, Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, and Surabaya as well as nine other domestic routes from Johor Bahru to Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Terengganu, Penang, Langkawi, Kuching, Miri, Tawau, Sibu, and Kota Kinabalu.