Thursday, October 25, 2007

Budget airlines will fly MY-SG either 16 or 4 times (WTF?) a day

NST and TheStar appears to have gotten their wires crossed when they reported that budget airlines AirAsia and Tiger Air will be able to fly to Singapore from Malaysia. Malaysiakini also has a report on this, but since it's a paysite, I don't know what the heck its report says.

NST reported that a total 8 daily flights from 4 Malaysian cities to Singapore had been approved for Air Asia. Nothing was said about how many flights any Singaporean airlines will get but a reference to a 'reciprocal arrangement' was made.

AirAsia has been given the green light to operate two daily flights each from Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching to Singapore.

Sources said the cabinet agreed yesterday to open the routes to budget airlines from the two countries under a reciprocal arrangement, starting in December or January once the logistics are sorted out.

Prices for the Singapore flights are expected to start at RM9.90 for return trips.
The Star however mentioned only 2 daily flights out of KLIA's LCCT and nothing about Singapore-bound flights from Penang, Kuching or KK. It also specifically mentioned that Tiger Airways will get the same number of flights.
AirAsia got the nod from the Government yesterday to operate two flights daily to the republic. It is learnt that the Cabinet gave the nod at its weekly meeting.

According to sources, Tiger Airways, Singapore’s own budget airline, would also be offered to fly the same route.

AirAsia and Tiger Airways are expected to charge about 30% of the non-shuttle fare but will have the usual cheap offers for limited seats. The two low-cost carriers will operate the route between the LCCT at KLIA and the Budget Terminal at Changi Airport.

It was learnt that AirAsia and Tiger Airways would only be allowed to operate the two flights each on off-peak hours. Sources expected the two carriers to start operations in January.
Whether NST or Star got it correct... well, it's a matter of whether it's good news or great news. Either way, consumers will stand to benefit for once. I hope this is not a false alarm though.
More reading on the KL-Singapore air route:

KL-SG route: Open skies are open lies

Open Skies Agreements Can Cause Problems, Says MASEU

How badly is MAS screwing us over KUL-SIN? RM75 MILLION a year!

KL - Singapore route to remain high cost only

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