SIBU (Bernama) – AirAsia’s maiden Kota Kinabalu-Sibu-Kota Kinabalu flight took off from the Kota Kinabalu International Airport at 6am with 78 passengers onboard an Airbus 320N.
Sibu airport manager Zainuddin Abu Nasir said the flight landed at 7.05am and departed on its return journey to Kota Kinabalu at 8.25am with 139 passengers onboard.
He said the new twice daily direct flight between the two sectors would not affect Malaysia Airport Holdings Bhd (MAHB) Sibu’s ability to handle 64 flights on an average per day.
“We (MAHB) are still operating under capacity and are capable of accommodating additional aircraft landing including that of the Airbus 330.
“Sibu airport starts operations at 6am up to 10pm and extends its operating hours until midnight if there is a necessity including receiving flights that are diverted from other airports, due to bad weather, and even accommodating flight delays due to technical glitches,” Zainuddin told Bernama yesterday.
Last November, the Ministry of Transport announced that low cost carrier, AirAsia, would be allowed to operate the Kota Kinabalu-Sibu and Kota Kinabalu-Bintulu routes, beginning this month, taking over from MASwings Sdn Bhd.
Malaysian Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook was reported to have said the Cabinet approved the termination of MASWings’ rural air service (RAS) contract earlier than the duration period of 2024.