Posted on: 09 November 2015 by Ross McSweeny
AirAsia X, the long-haul affiliate of the AirAsia Group, has revealed its operating statistics for the third quarter of 2015 (3Q15).
tIn line with the strategic capacity management that was implemented during the first half of the year to address the issue of irrational competition, especially in the Australian segment, and to prevent further losses from routes that have yet to mature, available seat kilometres decreased by 9% year-on-year to 5,770 million in 3Q15.ttRevenue passenger kilometres decreased 16% in comparison to 3Q14 to 4,333 million due to the effect of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) outbreak in May 2015, challenging aviation regulations in Indonesia and the depreciation of USD:MYR. Consequently, Air Asia X’s 3Q15 passenger load factor was down 6% year over year to 75%.ttHowever, the group is seeing strong forward bookings from October 2015, signifying the return of business in 4Q15. It has seen strong recovery for the China segment in 3Q15 with an average load factor of 85% despite a higher average base fare. Japan has also seen improvement following the termination of the loss-making Narita route in August 2015 with newly launched Sapporo showing promising demand after its maiden flight on 1st October 2015. ttAs for fleet movement, the group has a total size of 26 A330s as of 30 September, 2015, with 20 based in Malaysia AirAsia X, 4 based in Thai AirAsia X and 2 in Indonesia AirAsia X. The group recently took delivery of 1 A330 aircraft in October 2015, to be based in TAAX, bringing the group’s current total fleet size to 27 A330s.ttThai AirAsia X recorded a load factor of 71% in 3Q15, which is lower than the previous year, but the group maintains a positive outlook about the carrier’s operations. The airline introduced its first direct service from Bangkok to Shanghai during the quarter.ttIndonesia AirAsia X announced in early October 2015 that it has complied with Indonesia’s Ministry of Transportation’s regulatory requirement of minimum 10 aircraft ownership, with the fleet now consisting of which 8 A320s and 2 A330s. The additional fleet will be operating from Bali, Surabaya and Jakarta, tapping on the existing frequency slots from Indonesia AirAsia. These major trunk routes will benefit the group with high volume feeder traffic and improve Fly-thru connectivity. Aside from that, the carrier terminated its Bali–Taipei route and launched a Bali–Sydney service.ttAs expected, the operating performance for China and the Australian market has seen improvement in 3Q15 on the back of aggressive marketing activities and brand campaigns during the first half of 2015. Furthermore, there will be co-brand campaigns with AirAsia Japan and aggressive marketing collaborations in both markets which the group hopes will bear fruit moving into 4Q15 and 2016.