By: Mond Ortiz
Capital A is moving towards another round of widebody aircraft order for AirAsia, with CEO Tony Fernandes mentioning ongoing discussions. Airbus is the main focus of these talks, although Boeing has also made some offers. This new order aims to significantly expand the AirAsia network.
Tony Fernandes has big plans for AirAsia. He aims to develop a multi-hub strategy that could make AirAsia a key player in the ASEAN region, which consists of ten countries. While he did not disclose the exact size of the new order, he confirmed that it would contribute to making AirAsia a major airline in the ASEAN region.
Current State of the AirAsia Fleet
The AirAsia group, which includes airlines like Philippine Airlines, Thai AirAsia, and Indonesia AirAsia, currently operates a variety of Airbus narrowbodies. They have 362 A321neo Family aircraft scheduled for future delivery. The airlines that handle longer flights, AirAsia X and Thai AirAsia X, operate A330-type aircraft and are set to receive A321XLRs in the future. Additionally, there are 13 A330neos that have yet to be delivered.
Recovery and Future Plans
AirAsia is showing strong signs of recovery from the pandemic. According to Fernandes, the airline is almost back to pre-Covid levels. Since China reopened its borders in March, AirAsia has flown 3.5 million Chinese nationals. The airline has also returned to all its pre-pandemic Chinese airports and is considering adding new ones next year.
By the end of October, 180 planes are expected to be back in service. The goal is to have all 204 planes operational by the end of the year.
Capital A and AirAsia are in the process of negotiating a new widebody aircraft order. This is part of a larger strategy aimed at making AirAsia a significant airline in the ASEAN region and beyond.