17 June 2022
Malaysia’s low-cost airline AirAsia X is bringing back its London to Kuala Lumpur route after a decade waiting in the wings.
First launched in 2009, AirAsia X announced in January 2012 that it would pull its Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KUL) to London Stansted Airport (STN) service to “concentrate capacity in our core markets of Australasia, China, Taiwan, Japan and Korea,” it said at the time.
By March that same year, AirAsia X also withdrew from the French capital Paris, as well as Indian cities New Delhi and Mumbai.
So, when is the London revival set to happen? AirAsia X has essentially been on the ground for the past two years, so this is a big comeback announcement. Still, late 2022 is the current date, as an exact day or month has yet to be unveiled — nor has the exact London airport that the planes will be flying to and from.
The budget long-haul carrier plans to also launch regular services to sun seeker paradise Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, and Turkish city break hub Istanbul – as well as revitalising routes to some of its most popular destinations, including South Korea, Japan. Australia and India.
On sale now, Kuala Lumpur to Seoul Incheon (ICN), Tokyo Haneda (HND) and New Delhi (DEL) will fly from July 2022 twice-weekly, with routes to Sydney (SYD) starting from September 2022.
An Osaka Kansai (KIX) service will launch from October, which will also connect the Malaysian capital to Hawaiian city of Honolulu (HNL). Last but by no means least, four-weekly Kuala Lumpur to Sapporo Chitose (CTS) flights will take off from December 2022.
Of the announcement, AirAsia X’s CEO Benyamin Ismail says: “The return to London and first time flights direct to Dubai and Istanbul will be a gamechanger for great value long haul travel and these will be on sale soon for travel later this year.”
He added: “We are back, better and stronger than ever. We have spent the downtime in flying reviewing every aspect of the operation to deliver even greater value and choice for medium and long-haul travel.
“Now that international borders are reopening across the world, we are able to resume operations to our most popular destinations including Australia, Japan, Hawaii, India, South Korea first.
“Today’s announcement of the resumption of four routes to Japan and Hawaii and to launch flights to London, Istanbul and Dubai is just the beginning. We have many more destinations in the pipeline which we will announce soon, to meet strong pent up demand.”
While the founder of AirAsia X, Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, commented: “This is an incredibly exciting day as AAX returns to the skies refreshed and rejuvenated.
“We are thrilled to return to London and to launch flights for the first time to Dubai and Istanbul.”
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