AirAsia says it will resume domestic flights in several countries

Resumption of services will initially be for key selected domestic routes, which will increase gradually.

airasia flight safety_2
(PHOTO: Shutterstock)

Low-cost carrier AirAsia said it will resume domestic flights in various countries starting in Malaysia on 29 April, followed by Thailand on 1 May, the Philippines on 1 May, India on 4 May and Indonesia on 7 May, subject to approval from various regulatory authorities. The resumption of services will initially be for key selected domestic routes, which will increase gradually to include international destinations around the network, once the COVID-19 pandemic situation improves and governments lift borders and travel restrictions.

Like hundreds of airlines around the world, AirAsia has had to ground many of its planes as passenger air travel has ground to a virtual halt because of the COVID-19 virus. (PHOTO: Shutterstock)

President (Airlines) of AirAsia Group Bo Lingam said: “We are very pleased to be able to fly again and to serve our guests starting with domestic routes, and hope to resume full operations as soon as possible. We have undertaken a thorough review of our guest-handling procedures both on ground and on-board in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

A screenshot of the Johns Hopkins University virus tracking site taken on 17 April. Click on the image to go to the live site. (PHOTO: Matt Driskill)

AirAsia said passengers are advised to practise recommended protective precautionary measures including wearing a mask, social distancing and observing high personal hygiene. The aircraft, which are fitted with hospital-standard High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, will also be sent for a thorough disinfection after each flight.

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Matthew Driskill is the Editor of Asian Aviation and is based in Cambodia. He has been an Asia-based journalist and content producer since 1990 for outlets including Reuters and the International Herald Tribune/New York Times and is a former president of the Foreign Correspondents Club of Hong Kong. He frequently appears on international broadcast outlets like CNN, Al Jazeera and the BBC and has taught journalism at Hong Kong University and the American University of Paris. Driskill has received awards from the Associated Press for Investigative Reporting and Business Writing and in 1989 was named the John J. McCloy Fellow by the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University in New York where he earned his Master's Degree.


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