Jfkj0han From Malaysia, joined Nov 2007, 7 posts, RR: 0 Posted (5 years 6 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 16329 times:
I was early. Not like your average Malaysian, but I just had to be. I mean, who wouldnt right?? It was my chance in a lifetime to actually be a part of Malaysian aviation history!!! And being the aviation buff like I am, I could NOT miss it for the world!
Hi, i'm JFK, Radio DJ, Music Producer and Private Pilot here in Malaysia. More importantly, Yes, I was also amongst the 95% of the full load for the Air Asia X Airbus 330 bound to Gold Coast, Australia from our Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT).
Just to share with you, before this, all trips on AirAsia were, although Internationally Regional, did not go long-haul. The most you could probably do in those planes were about 3-4 hours max! For me at least, I could not definitely sit in them small birdies for more than 2 hours before I start losing the feelings in both my legs and lower back. Yeah, from these pictures you can probably see how small everyone else is, compared to me. Hehe
Anyway, when I heard that AirAsia X bought the Airbus A330-300, I was a tad bit relieved as I knew that their seating configuration would allow for a more economy-sized-standard seating of 2-4-2 and there was an XL seat which could probably fit me comfortably in my flight all the way down under. More on this funky cool new XL seat from AirAsia X a tad bit later in our story. Lets get back to the fun!
So it was 7pm, all of us were checking-in, the VIPs, the Media, the whoswho in the aviation / transport industry... even some clowns (pun intended), were zooming all around the LCCT terminal showing off AirAsia X caps, GoGo Gold Coast tshirts etc. It was a fact that everyone in the terminal knew, that today, the 2nd of November, was AirAsia Xs Inaugeral Long-Haul Flight to Australia!
The flight was not until 9.40pm, and arriving at 7.00pm, by 7.30pm yours truly and partner were already done checking in. Thats how efficient everything was! Emmy and I then asked each other what shall we do till then? So we both decided to roam around the terminal and play with the clowns, take pictures and just spend a few moments in one of their restaurants for small and quick bite!
At about 8pm, we went into the departure waiting area of the LCCT and was pleasantly surprised that they arranged entertainment for all those waiting! We saw some of the cast from Warner Bros coming to greet us and that was fun!
Moments later, we were allowed to board. The fun was going to begin!!!!!!!!!!
That above, is Emmy... Muahss!
So we moved to the plane, lo and behold AirAsia Xs CEO Mr. Azran Osman Rani and AirAsias CEO Dato Tony Fernandez were there on the tarmac together with other VIPS from AirAsia! They were greeting us as we boarded the plane!!!
I even remember Tony saying that he feels so proud, like a proud new father.. and that he is so happy the younger generation are starting to make a change with his airline (quoting Azran and his team) let us note that Azran is only 36 years young btw!). Anyway... so we boarded the planeeeeee...... of course not after taking some pictures with the big guns myself.... weeeeeee..
That is Azran with the presss........
This is me with Datuk Kamaruddin Meranun, Deputy Group CEO of Air Asia.
So yeah... Lets boarddddddd.......
Okay.... now we're inside.
My first impression as I got into the plane was whoah, this is the biggest Air Asia aircraft I have ever seen to date! The inside is just Huggeeeee! I finally saw the 2-4-2 seating configuration I only dreamt about on an AirAsia flight. Two Isles people!!!! With this seating configuration, I was more impressed that I, a guy who was 185cms tall, could somewhat actually fit somewhat comfortably into the seat!
Also, I did not have any trouble at all putting my luggage up in the overhead compartment. One would think that it would be full, on this full flight alas.... there was still ample space! I was truly, amazed.
The boarding was just so pleasant as most of us kinda knew each other, since the bulk of us were also in the scene being part in some way or another, active in the aviation industry! So it was pretty fun! There were loads of cute kids who were also travelling with their families, and not one of them created havoc on the plane during boarding! Im guessing, everyone was just excited to be flying long haul for the first time, at such an affordable rate!
Suddenly, I hear Tony (the AirAsia CEO) on the Intercom and started rushing straight to the front of the plane to start taking more pictures!! Tony says a few words of encouragement and also explains how this was a dream which has now become a reality, and also wishes us all well as we get on our way to Australia. Behind him was AirAsia Xs CEO Azran, smiling like a big cat!
Of course, some of the passengers had to take this opportunity to shake hands with the man himself so once all that was over with, Captain Hans who is also the Director of Flight Operations for AirAsia X, came on the Intercom to apologize for the delay (as all the chaos was still going on in the cabin) however we were about to get started to make our way down south! It was about half past ten at night and we were schedule to leave tad before nine. However, Captain Hans also said that because we had a tailwind which would follow us through our flight, we would probably get there at the same time scheduled and be on time for a big welcome arrival!
Oh boy I canttt wait.
Azran comes towards our seat..... and... Gulp...
Tadaaaaaa....... hehehe he da man...
So yeahhh........ As soon as we take off, Azran the CEO of AirAsia X starts to make his way up and down the cabin with his staff to make sure everything is okay and that everyone is well in their seats, comfortable and ready for dinner service!
Look how Emmy loves the nice plush XL seats on AirAsia X. Truly a first. She loves the comfort, I on the other hand, am just really happy that I can move my body without hurting anyone next to me. Hehe Anyway.... FOOOOOOOOODDDDDD.......
Yours truly has only heard of the 12 inch hot dog only available on Air Asia X, so I had to get myself one. Take a look at this! This gastronomically-awesome hot dog is THE BOMB! If you had to buy a ticket just to try the hot dog, DO IT. The Xtra long hot dog made my Xtra long flight.. Xtra worth it!! If only they didnt run out so fast! I would have had another....... and another... and another... and another......... Hehe
Okay guys.. I gotta run now, but I will be back!!! Part II of the AirAsia X Inaugeral Flight into Australia is NEXT WEEK so check back here then aights...
I will share with you photos from the arrival ceremony to some cute Koala Bears and all... right here... In the meantime if you really cant wait for the stories and just want to see the pictures, go to my blog jfk.lifelogger.com. Its on the frontpage, just scroll down / next.
PlymSpotter From Spain, joined Jun 2004, 11111 posts, RR: 63 Reply 1, posted (5 years 6 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 16324 times:
Firstly, let me say welcome to the the site!
Very interesting report, it's nice to read another account of the inaugural flight - do you know if they will be keeping the 2-4-2 configuration, or swapping to 3-3-3? I don't think I'm alone in eagerly anticipating their arrival in the UK, can't wait to fly on them when they do - preferably the first flight!
Jfkj0han From Malaysia, joined Nov 2007, 7 posts, RR: 0 Reply 2, posted (5 years 6 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 16314 times:
I sure hope they do keep the configuration... and like you, I too am eagerly anticipating their flight to the UK! More over, I am praying that I might actually, when that happens, fly the airplane myself! Fingers crossed that whatever i'm working on right now to get my commercial pilots license, happens, so that this will become a reality!
Should this happen and I assist in commanding that particular vessel and you are on my passengers list, please tell the nearest flight attendant that you were the first person to reply to my post and i'll do everything in my power to put you in the jumpseat (so help me god) hehe...
Get down here to Malaysia buddy and take that flight on X. Their 12 inch Xtra long hotdogs are to DIE FOR!
PlymSpotter From Spain, joined Jun 2004, 11111 posts, RR: 63 Reply 3, posted (5 years 6 months 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 16286 times:
Quoting Jfkj0han (Reply 2): Should this happen and I assist in commanding that particular vessel and you are on my passengers list, please tell the nearest flight attendant that you were the first person to reply to my post and i'll do everything in my power to put you in the jumpseat (so help me god) hehe...
Thank you - that would indeed be an honour Fingers crossed for your flight training and that all goes well!
Quoting Jfkj0han (Reply 2): Get down here to Malaysia buddy and take that flight on X. Their 12 inch Xtra long hotdogs are to DIE FOR!
Well, it's a long way to go for a hotdog, but if the fares are cheap enough when launched, then I don't see why not
Jfkj0han From Malaysia, joined Nov 2007, 7 posts, RR: 0 Reply 4, posted (5 years 6 months 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 16248 times:
Check this out... I discovered that the average price for an economy seat (KL-GoldCoast-KL) was, in USD, $250 round-trip inclusive of taxes and charges for the inaugural flight itself!!!! Thats like half of Malaysia Airlines, and lets not even think of mentioning Singapore Air.. hahah... AirAsia X's Xtra plush.. Xtra large XL seats.. was only about $600 too!
I'm sure if you plan your finances out.... aim to pay usd250 for the hot dog, and get a free holiday to the gold coast!
Alangirvan From New Zealand, joined Nov 2000, 2091 posts, RR: 1 Reply 5, posted (5 years 6 months 1 day ago) and read 16045 times:
A great report, and a great hot dog. I hope people from Malaysia like to try skiing and AirAsiaX will extend the flights onto Christchurch in NZ as well. I think AirAsiaX will be a fun way to fly from this part of the world to the UK, with a stopover in a Tune Hotel in KL. Did you try the chicken pie from the menu as well?
Jfkj0han From Malaysia, joined Nov 2007, 7 posts, RR: 0 Reply 6, posted (5 years 6 months 1 day ago) and read 16036 times:
About the peeps from Malaysia loving skiing -- I am certain that anywhere with snow would make our people go wild! As a matter of fact anywhere which is cooler/colder than the hot 30'c of Malaysian tropical weather throughout the year... would be FUNtastic!
Re: the chicken pie, I will most definitely try that the next time I fly AirAsia!
SQ772 From Singapore, joined Nov 2001, 1792 posts, RR: 5 Reply 7, posted (5 years 6 months 1 day ago) and read 15995 times:
Thanks for the report, and I'm sure it was a memorable flight for you. Overall, it was a pleasure to read, and at some points in the report, I felt as though I had to RAP it instead of just reading it to get the whole feel of your mood DUDE!! heheh Looking forward to more reports from you.
Crosswind From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 2571 posts, RR: 59 Reply 8, posted (5 years 6 months 21 hours ago) and read 15847 times:
Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 1): Very interesting report, it's nice to read another account of the inaugural flight - do you know if they will be keeping the 2-4-2 configuration, or swapping to 3-3-3? I don't think I'm alone in eagerly anticipating their arrival in the UK, can't wait to fly on them when they do - preferably the first flight!
No the configuration is currently the ex-Aer Lingus configuration, all future aircraft will be in the real Air AsiaX layout and 9M-XAA is also due to be reconfigured to match...
While AirAsia X’s first A330 will be configured with 315 seats, it will squeeze about 400 passengers on its fleet of purchased A330s. This will include an unusual 3-3-3 configuration in economy instead of the normal 2-4-2 configuration used by almost all A330 operators. AirAsia X has 15 A330s on order and the A330 leased from AWAS, which has been appropriately named “Semangat Sir Freddi” in tribute to low-cost carrier pioneer Freddie Laker, will also eventually be reconfigured to match the tighter configuration of the purchased aircraft.
Bit naughty of Air AsiaX if you ask me - launch using the Aer Lingus config with normal economy and 90s style Business class and then reconfigure to a high-density layout with 3-3-3 seating in economy and normal premium economy seating...
PlymSpotter From Spain, joined Jun 2004, 11111 posts, RR: 63 Reply 10, posted (5 years 6 months 9 hours ago) and read 15511 times:
Quoting Crosswind (Reply 8): No the configuration is currently the ex-Aer Lingus configuration, all future aircraft will be in the real Air AsiaX layout and 9M-XAA is also due to be reconfigured to match...
Thanks for the info - flew in a 3-3-3 configured A310 recently and it wasn't great. Better though than a 2-4-2 767 I must say, but still on the cramped side of things. Even so, you get what you pay for, so I think it would be worth it.
Quoting Lutfi (Reply 9): Meh, this whole TR sounds like a PR piece - did you pay for your own ticket and accomodation or was it a free trip in return for publicity on your radio show?
Chill out a bit, it's nice to get reports which appear in different styles.
Jfkj0han From Malaysia, joined Nov 2007, 7 posts, RR: 0 Reply 11, posted (5 years 6 months 5 hours ago) and read 15374 times:
Quoting Lutfi (Reply 9): Does Emmy love the 12" hot dog too?
Meh, this whole TR sounds like a PR piece - did you pay for your own ticket and accomodation or was it a free trip in return for publicity on your radio show?
Yeah Emmy loves the hot dog as well. We wanted it on the way back alas, it was sold out! Of course I've had my fair share of hotdogs from around the world but I say again, its the idea that you are in flight, having an Xtra long hotdog which did it for me! I was just tired of the staple breads and rice from Asian Airlines.
Also, of course it was a PR exercise! You got to give the Airlines a positive break. They are now letting most of us who don't earn the big pay cheques, a chance to FLY long haul to a foreign land! And i'm certain that if I was the CEO of the airlines, I would want to tell everyone and what better way than through PR!
If you were in either of the two countries you would have already heard the buzz about it on television or radio. I'm just doing my bit to say THANK YOU AIRASIA X -- online.
FInally, FYI, The costs to travel to Gold Coast on a competitor airline could be close to double if not 3 times more expensive! So yeah.... kudos AIRASIA!
Alangirvan From New Zealand, joined Nov 2000, 2091 posts, RR: 1 Reply 12, posted (5 years 6 months 4 hours ago) and read 15325 times:
I have been in an A300 with 3-3-3 seating for an hour long flight. Hip room was OK, compared with being in a 757 with 29" legroom, where the tray table sticks into you when you are trying to eat. Perhaps you do not need a tray for a hot dog.
When the new seating configuration comes in, it will be a matter of whether people can survive flying between Avalon and Stansted in an Air Asia A330 compared with an Emirates 777-300ER or A380. If AirAsia do the stop at Sharjah, I hope they will be there during daylight hours so airliners.net members can take photos.