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AirAsia gets green light for Thai long-haul airline

February 5, 2014

AirAsia has received permission to launch a new long-haul low-cost carrier based in Bangkok.

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Thailand’s Department of Civil Aviation granted an Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) to Thai AirAsia X this week, allowing the airline to commence operations from Bangkok’s Don Mueang International Airport.

The new airline will initially lease two 377-seat, two-class Airbus A330-300s for its first year of operations, before expanding its fleet in the future. AirAsia X recently placed an order for 25 new A330s, several of which are expected to be operated by its Thai unit.

AirAsia X’s CEO, Azran Osman-Rani, said the new unit would boost connectivity across the region, allowing passengers to connect in Bangkok between AirAsia’s short- and long-haul networks.

“Thai AirAsia X is expected to offer connecting ‘fly-thru’ services with Thai AirAsia’s short-haul domestic and regional network, offering greater connectivity options from hubs in Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok. The establishment of our Thai hub will see the beginning of AirAsia X’s strategic multi-hub plan turn into reality,” said Osman-Rani.

The new Thai carrier is expected to operate to a range of destinations across Asia Pacific, including Australia, India, Japan and Korea. In future it could also operate longer flights to destinations in Europe.

Nadda Buranasiri has been named as the new chief executive officer of Thai AirAsia X.

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