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uniopp Aug 7th, 2006 12:42 AM

Air Asia
We got some cheap fares (US$50 return per person) from KL to Kota Kinabalu for Jan 2007 and I'm wondering if they are going to be reliable (Air Asia that is). I have read mixed reports about the reliability with a lot of delays and canceled flights. A delay on the way out would not be too much of a problem. On the way back we have a connecting flight and although we have about 4 hours I'm still a bit worried. Any feedback would be appreciated.
Also, do they allow families with children to board first? I heard there is no seat allocation.

JannaG Aug 7th, 2006 02:45 AM

There may or may not be delays - I think even the airline itself wouldn't know right now. My suggestion would be for you to call or go online to check the flight times a few days before and then again on the day you're taking the flight...just in case.

AirAir doesn't have seat allocation but yes they do allow families to board first.

rhkkmk Aug 7th, 2006 09:20 AM

in asia i would not even take a really reliable airline, which air asia is not, with only a 4 hour turnaround for an international flight....way too risky and nerve racking , imo...

SueHuml Aug 7th, 2006 12:10 PM

We used Thai Air Asia for 8 legs during our Jan 06 vacation in Thailand and Vietnam. Our first flight on Air Asia was two hours late leaving for Phuket (they said it was weather ) so we did not have too much expectation for the rest of our trips with them. However, except for our very first flight, all 7 others left on time or early (if everyone is on board, they go, there's no waiting until actual take off time) Most arrived early.
That said, I agree totally with Bob, I would not want to risk a 4 hour window between an Asian airline and an International flight. That's way too little fudge time for my level of comfort.

Susan33 Aug 7th, 2006 03:26 PM

I would be really leary of taking an Air Asia flight that connects on the same day to your international flight.

We arrived for a domestic Air Asia flight and found that the flight was cancelled--no reason given. We were put on the next flight that left 4-hours later. We were so thankful that we did not have to make a connection. Remember that Air Asia's luggage weight is less than many airlines, and they will charge for excess weight.

JamesA Aug 8th, 2006 03:03 AM

If that connection is a long haul or at a fare deal I would try and get in earlier, if you happen to get in late it could really mess things up.
Another point is that early morning flights 'tend' to be more reliable, any delays have been 'washed out' over night, but the later in the day it gets that is when delays, late take-offs etc can build up, it's a rough guide but the later in the day the more % chance of a delay.

uniopp Aug 8th, 2006 05:48 PM

Thanks everyone.
Looks like I should have thought about this a bit more before I booked and payed for the Air Asia tickets. I also realized a couple of days ago that we will not be arriving at the main terminal and will have to transfer from the LCC terminal to the main terminal (see separate post regarding terminal transfers).
I looked at changing the flight to an earlier one but it appears that the fuel surcharge has nearly doubled since I made my reservation a couple of weeks ago and it would expensive to change six tickets.
I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed that there are no Air Asia delays or cancellations.

uniopp Aug 9th, 2006 02:51 PM

I decided to pay the extra for the ticket changes and we now have 7 hours from the time we arrive at KLIA LCC terminal on Air Asia to the time we leave the main terminal for our international flight on Malaysian Airlines. That should allow for most delays and even a canceled flight (assuming they put us on the next flight).
Thanks for the advice.

laurieco Aug 9th, 2006 03:56 PM

I had an Air Asia flight in Kuala Lumpur delayed for 11 hours. Actually, they changed the flight time to over 11 hours later with no advance notice. I changed airlines and made a scene until Air Asia refunded our money. I'll never fly them again.

easywalker Aug 9th, 2006 08:58 PM

Hi, Uniopp! This past spring I took AirAsia from Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok.

The flight was prompt in taking off and landing, and was fairly uneventful. Complimentary beverages were served, and a hot meal was available for purchase. My only concern was that the aircraft looked old and grimey.

Enjoy your flight, and the connection!

Girlspytravel Aug 9th, 2006 09:28 PM

My experience with Air Asia could not have been better- I flew them from Macau to Bangkok for something like 60US (the other carriers were charging around 250-300US). They helped me with a ticket issue, they took off on time, they had first-rate excellent English speaking F/As who were very safety conscious, we got off the plane at BKK, and it seemed like it was no more than 10 minutes later that I was walking out the door to the airport limo with baggage in hand. I'll definitely fly them again, absolutely no reason not to, and as far as cancellations go, I've experienced those, including without any warning, on all the major American carriers, so I don't take that as a deal breaker by any means-it depends on the circumstances.

Harriet Nov 29th, 2006 02:57 AM

We just returned from Malaysian Borneo and 4 out of 4 of our experiences using Air Asia were perfectly fine.

I don't know how our experience might compare with yours. We never flew out of KL and none of our flights was international. We never checked luggage and took only (large) carry-on bags.

We flew JB to Kuching, Kuching to Kota Kinabalu, and KK to Sandakan (round trip). Three out of 4 flights actually left EARLY and arrived early. The fourth flight left 10 minutes late and arrived only 5 minutes late.

Families with children always boarded first as did people with any physical challenges and people 55 and over. Sometimes there's a separate line or area for early boarders. You have to listen closely to the announcements or ask a gate agent for assistance. There are no assigned seats.

The ticket agents, gate agents and flight attendants were all friendly and helpful.

The Kota Kinabalu airport is in the midst of a major rebuilding so there's not a lot of waiting or roaming room. Despite all that, it's easy to get around. There's a small booth in the arrival area where you purchase a voucher for a taxi (teksi) ride into town. As soon as you step outside, there's a line of taxis waiting to take you to your destination.

Overall, we were very pleased with Air Asia and wouldn't hesitate to fly them again.

Bon voyage.

kaneda Nov 29th, 2006 10:54 AM

I've flown budget and expensive flights. Some were on time, some were over a day late. There is no hard and fast rule.

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