AirAsia keen to share system

  • Business
  • Thursday, 05 Jun 2014

SEPANG: AirAsia Bhd may consider sharing its native check-in system with other airlines in KLIA2 if the move improves operational efficiency and mitigates security risk at the new terminal.

Chief executive officer Aireen Omar said there was a possibility its check-in system, which is a local product, could be implemented as a common user system in the airport to be used with other airlines.

“We would like to use our check-in system which is integrated with the Interpol database, allows visa document to be checked properly and is intergrated with the baggage drop-off system,” Aireen told a press conference after the airline’s AGM and EGM here yesterday.

She claimed AirAsia’s system was “superior” to what was used at KLIA2 as it was able to accurately measure baggage.

Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) has made it mandatory for the low-cost airlines operating from KLIA2 to use the SITA common user passenger processing system which the airport operator has invested in for KLIA2.

This was despite AirAsia’s request to use its own system which the airline has been using at the former Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT).

“We have to pay a higher charge for a product that doesn’t have the same features than what we already have,” she said. The SITA charges are part of the RM3 KLIA2 fee that AirAsia pass on to passengers flying from the terminal.

“The fee include the cost of other mandatory facilities like departure gate systems and aerobridges.

Refuting reports that AirAsia was overcharging passengers for the fee, Aireen said the airline was passing on the costs that was imposed onto its operations.

KLIA2 is the only airport where AirAsia does not use its native check-in system. The airline continues to use its own system in 11 other airports where it operates nationwide.

Almost a month into operating from KLIA2, AirAsia said it still had some teething problems and it could take months to adjust to the dimensions of new airport.

“Everyone is adjusting to the new airport, even the Immigration department. There is a need for more manpower as KLIA2 is four times bigger than the LCCT,” she said.

Aireen added that AirAsia did not want to compromise its 25-minute turnaround time for all its aircraft and might look into automating some of its processes to maintain the target.

On the construction of its new corporate office, Aireen said works should begin in July, with a target completion at the end of 2015.

“It is really a simple, six-storey building to house our corporate offices near the airport. It is not a big investment and there are no funding issues,” she said, adding that AirAsia would lease the land from MAHB to build the office block.

Work on the new office has been delayed due to a revision to the design and location plan following the changes to the KLIA2 terminal design.

On other concerns about the new terminal, Aireen said she hoped that MAHB and AirAsia consultants would find permanent solutions for problems like soil depression on the taxiway and aircraft parking apron as these would affect the assets and operational costs of the airlines that operate there.

AirAsia also launched its investor relations application at the AGM, available for tablet devices on both iOS and Android platforms.

The free applications offers investors access to information such as AirAsia’s annual reports, quarterly reports, operating statistics, Bursa Malaysia announcements and dividend policy.

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