SEPANG, MALAYSIA – After 19 years of enabling everyone to fly, what started off as a humble low cost carrier with just two planes, airasia has come a long way, to be a leading player in the region and now, much more than just an airline.
From being the World’s Best Low-Cost Airline for the past 11 consecutive years, airasia has transformed into a leading all-in-one Asean digital travel and lifestyle super app, selling not just its own flight tickets but also those of other airlines.
Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, Executive Chairman of airasia group said: “When we first started off as a low cost carrier, many were in doubt of our prospects and being an underdog in a market dominated by legacy airlines made it all the more challenging. Almost two decades on, we not only proved our critics wrong; we are now connecting over 160 destinations across Asia and the Pacific, bringing the people of Asean even closer together. With airline operations in four of Asean’s largest economies and plans for more, no other carrier can be more Asean than us.
“In our birthplace Malaysia, we have played a key role in promoting integration between the West and East Malaysia by providing unrivalled connectivity to the people, and becoming the first airline to connect this country to the once forgotten cities of Macau and Bandung, just to name a few. Not to mention being the first airline to have female pilots in the country, thus recognising women’s contributions and achievements in aviation.
“Most importantly, we have built a strong foundation for a sustainable future for our airline and digital businesses to not only survive, but come out more robust and resilient than ever before. What we have done over recent times to turn the business around in these challenging times is testament to the dedication of our hardworking Allstars and feedback from over 600 million guests who have flown with us. We are working hard on bringing back Allstars that had recently left us at no fault of their own.”
Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, CEO of airasia group said: “Just as there were skeptics towards us as a low cost airline 19 years ago, there is an equal amount of pessimism towards our digital transformation today. What sets us apart from the rest, however, is our clear and deep understanding of value, our customers and the technology itself, and our determination towards making it happen. We are young, we have great brains that produce great ideas, and we will definitely come back stronger and more powerful post-Covid-19.
“While there’s a glitch – and Covid-19 is a glitch – this is not the end but a new beginning. airasia will be a never ending story that only gets better and better. We will keep on growing to be the best in the world; this is really the time to restart, refresh and rebuild.
“Today on our 19th anniversary, airasia.com is proud to be the leading travel and lifestyle super app in Asean, catering to 17 million monthly active users and growing, giving customers the convenience of finding anything and everything related to travel and everyday life like food and fresh produce all on the one platform.
“The travel downtime caused by the pandemic over the past months has indeed given us a great opportunity to accelerate our digital transformation. Apart from airasia.com for travel-related products and services, we also have e-commerce (airasia shop, airasia food and airasia fresh), Teleport (logistics), Santan (Asean fast food chain), BigPay and BIG Rewards (fintech), as well as the Muslim-centric services platform IKHLAS.”
To commemorate its 19th anniversary this year, airasia today launched airasia Museum, an online archive of the Group’s images, documents and publications related to the history of the company since its early days from pre-2001 up to 2020. The virtual museum takes visitors through key milestones in airasia’s digital journey that started from the outset in 2002, when it became the first airline in Asia to go ticketless via direct online bookings.
During the pandemic downtime, airasia has been rigorously preparing itself for the new norms of air travel by rolling out various contactless innovations such as biometric facial recognition (F.A.C.E.S.) and the Scan2Fly travel and health documents submission via the app to make flying not only safe and affordable but also more hygienic and seamless. In September, it launched Asia Digital Engineering to provide engineering services for airasia’s group of airlines as well as other airlines in the region.