KUCHING: AirAsia Berhad has finally decided to use the aerobridge for all of its flights after years of public complaints pertaining to the inconvenience of using the staircase to enter and exit the aircraft.
According to Transport Minister Datuk Seri Lee Kim Shin, using the staircase is difficult and inconvenient especially for the elderly, people with special needs, and those travelling with small children.
“With the formation of the Sarawak Transport Ministry on Aug 22 in 2019, the issue was brought up to AirAsia Berhad’s top management, the federal Transport Ministry, and the Malaysia Aviation Commission (Mavcom), whereby the Sarawak Transport Ministry had been pressuring AirAsia Berhad to use the aerobridge in tandem with other airlines.
“Following months of continuous engagements with AirAsia Berhad and other relevant government authorities, a representative from AirAsia conveyed at the State Public Transport Committee (SPTC) meeting on Thursday that all AirAsia Berhad flights arriving from outside Sarawak or departing from Sarawak will use the aerobridge for the safety and convenience of all passengers,” he said in a statement on Friday (Oct 22).
Lee noted that the matter was conveyed by AirAsia Berhad’s new government relations officer in Sarawak Hamdan Mohammad during his courtesy visit to the Transport Ministry’s office today.
Following this, the Senadin assemblyman expressed his thanks and gratitude on behalf of the state government to AirAsia Berhad for making the decision to use aerobridge.
In addition, AirAsia Berhad during the courtesy visit, requested more flights to Sarawak in view of the relaxation of the interstate and interdivision travel, along with the revival of the tourism industry, tertiary students being able to travel due to the opening of a new semester and the opening of other business sectors.
However, he mentioned that the state government recognises the need for more flights coming into and within the state, thus, advised AirAsia Berhad to write officially to the Ministry of Transport which will then liaise with the relevant authorities such as the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC), federal Ministry of Transport and Mavcom to seek their consideration and approval.
At the same time, Lee was also briefed by Hamdan and his team on the seamless and contactless travel that Airasia Berhad is introducing to the aviation industry for the convenience of passengers.
“Sarawak Transport Ministry welcomes the close cooperation with AirAsia Berhad in offering better services to the public by addressing pertinent issues raised by them.
“All these improvements will further promote and position Sarawak as the preferred tourism and investment centre in the region.
“The state government also looks forward to working closely with AirAsia Berhad in other fields such as cargo services and the marketing of agriculture products for the betterment of the people of Sarawak.”