AirAsia X has announced that from 24 October 2011 its Kuala Lumpur-London flights will operate into the UK capital’s Gatwick airport, instead of Stansted. The new base see six flights a week from mid-December.
The Malaysian low-cost long-haul airline said its decision to switch from Stansted to Gatwick intended to offer its customers a “wider choice to travel onwards and connect domestically and internationally”. Gatwick is the UK’s second busiest airport, after London Heathrow, catering for 31.4 million passengers in 2010, compared to Stansted’s 18.6 million.
AirAsia X’s CEO, Azran Osman-Rani said; “Our aim has always been to open up travel for all. The popularity of the London-KL route is further testament to the pent-up demand for long-haul travel, provided the fares are low and the quality is high. That is the combination that we at AirAsia X are offering our guests.
“With our new home base in Gatwick, guests would be able to further benefit from the airport’s destination served, airline diversity, and beyond market connectivity potential with faster and cheaper rail connectivity to the city as compared to Stansted. AirAsia X see’s strong potential for the airport as we believe our entry will address the fact that direct services to Asia is significantly underserved from Gatwick,” added Azran.
AirAsia X launched its maiden flight into London Stansted in March 2009. The low-cost long haul airline is currently operating six times a week on the route. The Gatwick services will be operated using AirAsia X’s Airbus A340-300 with 327 seats, including 18 ‘Premium Fly’ flatbed seats.