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AirAsia Champions the East Malaysia Hub with First International Connectivity from Kuching Airport

AirAsia Champions the East Malaysia Hub with First International Connectivity from Kuching Airport (Forimmediaterelease.net) Winner of the CAPA ‘Airline of the Year 2007’ award, AirAsia today commemorated the official launch of the Kuching – Macau route at the Kuching International Airport graced by the attendance of Y.A.B. Pehin Sri Tan Sri Haji Abdul Taib B. Mahmud, Chief Minister of Sarawak, YB Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh, Minister for Finance (II)&Minister for Urban Development and Tourism. They were joined by YBhg. Dato’ Seri Kalimullah Hassan, Chairman of AirAsia X, YBhg Dato’ Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia Bhd and YBhg. Dato Kamarudin Meranun, Deputy Group CEO of AirAsia Bhd.

AirAsia is the only airline to serve the international route to Macau from the Kuching hub with three flights weekly on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. It will be the leading and largest low-cost carrier fifth hub flying directly to Macau. Currently the Kuching hub serves seven routes to Penang, Kuala Lumpur, Johor Bahru, Kota Kinabalu, Miri, Bintulu and Sibu. Thus the inclusion of its international network to Macau will not only allow greater connectivity between the fourth largest city in Malaysia and the gateway to Hong Kong including Southern China, but also to other extensive network which AirAsia operates from.

The addition of the international route from Kuching is not only in accordance with AirAsia’s future route expansion plans to bring greater traffic load to both states but also prepares the East Malaysia hub for global low cost travel. The new international route will bring positive impact to tourism and travel related industries and further contribute to the economy of Sarawak. Most importantly, the people of Sarawak will continue to enjoy and have more access to international travel from Kuching now.

Primed as a tourists’ attraction centre, Macau is unique as it is positioned as the gateway to Hong Kong and Southern China. It is not only an attractive destination, but is also rich in heritage, boasts a wealth of entertainment and well known for its gastronomic delight. On top of its endless attractions, the city is only a few minutes drive by car from the city of Zhuhai in mainland China and less than an hour away from Hong Kong by ferry.
Dato’ Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia Bhd said “We have established Kuching as our hub in East Malaysia in July 2006. The development of this hub has strategically positioned Kuching, Sarawak at the forefront to stimulate and encourage more travel between the Peninsular and East Malaysia. Besides, the establishment of this hub will enhance Malaysia’s connectivity to the international market. The Macau route is an important gateway to China and with the launch of this international route from Kuching will inevitably bring more people from the mainland China to the fourth largest urban state in Malaysia. The Macau route is also highly popular among tourists thus it is highly anticipated that the flight from the Kuching International Airport will replicate the success as well,”

“There is a huge demand from our passengers in Kuching to Macau and vice versa. It is noteworthy to highlight that our inaugural flight recorded one hundred percent load. This is also evident as we have already recorded an average of over than 83 % load from both ways to date. The international connectivity is also in response to the call made by the State Government which requested for enhanced connectivity from the East Malaysia hub” concluded Dato’ Tony.

FLIGHT SCHEDULE for KUCHING – MACAU
Flights From Departure / Arrival Flight No Frequency
KUCHING – MACAU 15:40 / 19:25 AK 488 Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday

FLIGHT SCHEDULE for MACAU - KUCHING
Flights From Departure / Arrival Flight No Frequency
MACAU - KUCHING 19:55 / 23:40 AK 489 Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday

For further information, MEDIA please contact: AIRASIA PUBLICITY TEAM Sherliza Zaharudin My Office No : +603 8660 4264 My Email : sherlizazaharudin@airasia.com Janet Leow My Office No : 603 8660 4265 My Email : Janetleow@airasia.com Andrea Liong My Office No : 603 8660 4287 My Email : liongwoenyee@airasia.com Mazlan Rasheed My Office No : 603 8660 4263 My Email : mazlanrasheed@airasia.com

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