AirAsia X eyes flights to London by end of 2022
AirAsia X continues to rebuild its network after the COVID-19 crisis, planning to launch new long-haul flights to Istanbul, Dubai and London by the end of the year.
The low-cost carrier is rebuilding after the COVID-19 pandemic and currently operates five Airbus A330s, from a fleet of 11 A330s, it said in a quarterly earnings release on Aug. 24, 2022. The airline airline currently offers scheduled flights to Seoul in South Korea and Delhi in India and also intends to add services to Australia and Japan by the end of the year.
“In the coming months, we will be reactivating more aircraft to return to popular medium-haul leisure destinations in Australia, South Korea, Japan and Saudi Arabia,” commented group interim CEO Tony. Fernandes. “Soon we will also be launching new short-haul services to Bali for the first time and new, more exciting longer-haul destinations to Istanbul, Dubai and London, which will begin operations by the end of the year.”
The budget carrier previously visited London in 2009 but was forced to pull out due to high fuel prices and weak demand.
AirAsia X said it hopes to have 15 A330s in service by “the first half of calendar year 2023 to meet strong consumer demand”. However, this represents a slight delay from June 2022, when management said the airline was currently using six of its A330s and hoped to have 15 Airbus aircraft in service by the end of 2022.
The airline hopes to restore daily services to most destinations before 2023, and Fernandes said there are also positive signs for China, which has implemented some of the strictest COVID-19 travel restrictions.
Partnership with Capital A
Fernandes also said more details would be provided in due course on a planned partnership with Capital A Group, to help AirAsia X expand its operations. AirAsia X is one of the airlines that make up AirAsia Aviation Group Limited, the aviation arm of Capital A.
“We will be able to leverage the capabilities of Capital A Group in terms of business requirements, cargo flight operations and technical maintenance requirements, to name a few – while ensuring that AAX’s costs are at rock bottom during this very crucial recovery period for the airline,” Fernandes said.
AirAsia X posted a pre-tax loss of RM652 million ($145 million) for the three months to June 30, 2022, but said it would have returned to profit had it not been for the voucher issuance costs. travel to passengers for flights that have been canceled during the pandemic.
Benyamin Ismail, CEO of AirAsia X Malaysia, said the airline was on track to recover, despite high oil prices and travel restrictions in key markets such as China, Japan and Taiwan.
“After the worst two years in aviation history, we are back stronger than ever. We look forward to resuming services to everyone’s favorite medium-haul destinations in the months ahead and delivering new new, even longer destinations that will offer our customers greater value and choice to meet the strong pent-up demand,” said Ismail.
The company also said more details on a rehabilitation plan for AirAsia X Thailand would be announced in due course.