flymd
Topic Author
Posts: 166
Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:34 am

Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 10:37 pm

Let me begin this thread by saying that I think that Air Asia is a good idea and for a specific type of traveller a decent airline to fly. Having said that, I think that the cost of flying Air Asia can really rack up for the majority of travellers and that in the end the cost can approximate that of a legacy or national carrier in the region.

I recently flew Air Asia (BKK-KUL-BKK) and have to say that the experience was interesting. I will be submitting a full TR once I get the pictures downloaded from my digital camera (ORD-NRT-BKK: Oct 4; BKK-NRT-ORD: Oct. 11 both on UA as well as BKK-KUL-BKK: Oct 6/10 on AK).

Why I say beware of Air Asia is that they really nickle and dime you. The cost of my AK flight was 6433 THB (Thai Bhat) roundtrip, which is approximately $200. I could have flown MH for between $270-300 but I wanted to give AK a try because who knowns when I would have the opportunity again.

ISSUE #1: VERY RESTRICTIVE BAGGAGE POLICY-
-When we (my wife, sister-in-law and I) checked in in BKK, we were told that our bags were over-weight. They only allow 1 piece of checked luggage per person and the weight maximum is 15kg. We had not even started our vacation yet (all we had was clothes in our luggage) and the bags were already "over-weight". We had to pay an additional 1600 THB (approximately $50 or $17 per person), not horrible but aggravating.

-Coming back however, our baggage weighed a total of 85kg (for three people distributed over 4 bags-we bought an extra bag for souvenirs). I don't think that this is too unreasonable, about 28kg each. However because we were 40kg over our "allowance", I had to pay 800 MH (Malaysian RIngits) which is approximately $250 or an additional $83 per person.

-AK only allows one piece of hand baggage with a maximum of only 7kg so there is not a lot of wiggle room there.


ISSUE #2: CHAOTIC KUL TERMINAL/SYSTEM WIDE CHECK-IN PROCEDURE-
-The LCCT at KUL is not large enough already for AK's capacity. The check-in lines are pure chaos (see my pending TR with pictures).

-To top the chaos off, each flight is assigned to a specific desk (in KUL and BKK). While our line for the KUL and BKK flights were snaking out of the door, the line for other flights (like Macau) were empty (yet when asked, they said they could not check me in at those desks).

ISSUE #3: CHAOTIC BOARDING-
- They do offer "Express boarding" where you can board first but it costs another 20 MR (approximately $6 each).

-If you don't get Express Boarding, good luck. Before the flights were called, there was literally a pushing rush to get to the front of the doors. I'm not a fan of open seating, but they should at least adopt a WN-like policy with boarding groups. The rush was literally dangerous.

ISSUE #4: LACK OF FLEXIBILITY-
-Obviously I cannot make this generalization systemwide, but I think that my experience in this regard was just a lack of experience on AK's part. After you have been doing something for a while you realize that there is the letter of the law versus the spirit of the law.

At any rate, we arrived at KUL for our BKK return flight about four hours early (hotel checkout issues). There was an earlier flight leaving for BKK within the hour with 40 empty seats on it. When I asked if we could take the earlier flight, they said "No. Our policy is that you cannot make changes less then 48 hours before your flight. You have to take you original flight or but new tickets." Bear in mind, the tickets are non-refundable, so I would lose all of my money just to take a flight 3 hours earlier.

Needless to say, I did not buy three new tickets just to leave 3 hours earlier. I understand that there are written policies but there is also the spirit of customer service. The supervisior literally let us sit at that airport for close to four hours while a flight was leaving in 1 hour with a third of it's seats empty. That is ridiculus, what did he or his company have to gain from that lack of lfexibility.


SO TO SUM IT ALL UP:

So in the end, I paid $307 RT per person for the flights on this "budget carrier". I could have flown MH for less ($274) and had assigned seats, gotten FF miles and a more generous baggage allowance.

AK targets vacationers and the segment of the population that was not really flying before, hence their slogan "Now everyone can fly" (i.e.rural people heading to larger cities or people heading back home). All of these people will be travelling with a good deal of luggage as evidenced by the VERY LARGE line at the dedicated "Excess baggage" counter.

If you are flying with very minimal luggage, AK is okay (the new Airbus 320s are nice). Just get express boarding, come to the airport early and bring lots of patience.
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
OHLHD
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 10:50 pm

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
ISSUE #1: VERY RESTRICTIVE BAGGAGE POLICY-

Well, I guess you knew in advance about their baggage policy. So I cannot see your point about complaining when you had to pay for excess baggage. This is regular on all LCC and other carriers.

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
ISSUE #3: CHAOTIC BOARDING-

Well, chaotic boarding is always fun. At least you did not have to run to get a seat.  Smile

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
At any rate, we arrived at KUL for our BKK return flight about four hours early (hotel checkout issues). There was an earlier flight leaving for BKK within the hour with 40 empty seats on it. When I asked if we could take the earlier flight, they said "No. Our policy is that you cannot make changes less then 48 hours before your flight. You have to take you original flight or but new tickets." Bear in mind, the tickets are non-refundable, so I would lose all of my money just to take a flight 3 hours earlier.

That of course you will find on almost every airline in the world. Just think if every passenger arrives at the airport early and demanding to be put on an earlier flight.

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
That is ridiculus, what did he or his company have to gain from that lack of lfexibility.

As I said. On major carriers you can pay hell of a money to get a flexible ticket to go when ever you want. On a LCC....no way.  Smile

I am sure you as an enthusiast will not fly the airline anymore but you can at least put the airline in your book and mark it as flown.  Smile I feel for you and your bad experience.
 
soups
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:03 pm

I flew with them on Kuala Lumpur-Kota Kinabalu-Kuching-Kuala Lumpur paid less than $150 for the 3 flights for 3PAX!
Fantastic service loved it. yes they are strict on baggage but you tried Ryanair or Easyjet? or any NON us low cost airline?
Next destinations, Suarabaya, beirut, paris, Accra
 
iclcy
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:09 pm

I think the words research, terms & conditions come to mind.
 
flymd
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:32 pm

Quoting IcLCY (Reply 3):
I think the words research, terms & conditions come to mind.

Research what exactly?. The baggage policy can be researched but even then it is just a number. I don't make habit of weighing my bags before I leave my house.

Regarding the boarding policy, I did research it hence it purchased the express boarding.

Regarding their check-in method or their terminal situation at KUL, how would you suggest that be researched?

And yes, all air carriers heck just about any business will have terms and conditions. Hence I referred to the "letter of the law". There is also common sense enactment of rules and regulations. As a owner of my own practice I have rules as well (i.e. you must be in the office by your appointment time). However, I also use common sense. If a patient comes 15 minutes late because they were stuck in traffic, I would not refuse to see them. It is called bending over backwards to please your customer. The airline would have lost NOTHING by letting take the earlier flight

Quoting OHLHD (Reply 1):


So I cannot see your point about complaining when you had to pay for excess baggage. This is regular on all LCC and other carriers.

I don't mind paying for excess baggage obviously the more the weight of the baggage, the higher the cost of the fuel. On the way back my sister-in-lawhad to pay a flat $50 fee to UA for excess baggage. $50 is reasonable, close to $300 is a bit much I think. Just my  twocents 
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
f1eddie
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:37 pm

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
VERY RESTRICTIVE BAGGAGE POLICY

Well i went travelling for 13months. I left Dub with all my luggage for this period in an 80Ltr backpack. Think it weighed about 18Kilos. I got two AX flights and i never had to pay excess fees!!! Maybe things have changed though as this was Oct > Dec 05

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
-To top the chaos off, each flight is assigned to a specific desk (in KUL and BKK). While our line for the KUL and BKK flights were snaking out of the door, the line for other flights (like Macau) were empty (yet when asked, they said they could not check me in at those desks).

Yeah they were dedicated lanes as well while i flew with them but i did Bkk > PNH and BKK > HKT and i dont remember any long queues for them. Maybe i just timed my arrival at the airport perfectly as both my flights were packed yet the queues were fine.

When did Air Asia change to AK. Flightmemory has them down as FD for me????
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OHLHD
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:39 pm

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 4):
$50 is reasonable, close to $300 is a bit much I think. Just my

I fully agree but bear in mind that you have flat-rates to the states which are generally cheaper than paying for each and every kilo to much.  Smile
 
Toast
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:41 pm

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 4):
I don't make habit of weighing my bags before I leave my house.

I do, always. Any old bathroom scale is perfectly adequate. I've never faced an excess baggage surcharge. Honestly, it takes 10 seconds and can save you lots and lots of $ and hassle.

 twocents 
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bullpitt
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:47 pm

Hi all

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
So in the end, I paid $307 RT per person for the flights on this "budget carrier". I could have flown MH for less ($274) and had assigned seats, gotten FF miles and a more generous baggage allowance.

I won't even anwer this. I think if you think about it you have anwered yourself. A lot of people who fly these LCC when they add it all up realize they could have saved some money if they flew a legacy carrier.

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 4):
Research what exactly?. The baggage policy can be researched but even then it is just a number. I don't make habit of weighing my bags before I leave my house.

Another mistake, you should, Airlines have a weight limit and as such you should know how much you can carry and how much you are carrying.



Quoting FlyMD (Reply 4):
The airline would have lost NOTHING by letting take the earlier flight

Yes they have something to loose, you see I don't know this specific carrier, but many carriers sell more expensive tkts that allow changes, if you start changing tkt that don't allow changes people start to expect this to be done and don't buy changeble tkts as they know they will be able to change them at the APT.
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flymd
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:48 pm

Quoting F1eddie (Reply 5):
80Ltr backpack. Think it weighed about 18Kilos.

For that 18 kilo backpack you would have paid a fee (their limit is 15kg)

Quoting F1eddie (Reply 5):
When did Air Asia change to AK. Flightmemory has them down as FD for me????

AK is Air Asia is believe, while FD is Thai Air Asia (I'm pretty sure, but I will double check)
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
mandala499
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:03 am

FlyMD,
Your 28kg per pax KUL-BKK would have attracted excess baggage per kilo on other airlines too you know!

Now imagine if you paid an extra 70 - 100 bucks a person and then STILL get charged 8kgs per person for the excess, ($43 a person)...

So, had you flew MH, you would pay an extra 113 - 143 bucks a person...

You have a luggage weight allowance, don't exceed it, no matter what airline you fly... any free excess is their discretion and not your right! I guess you're too used to the US system of having the allowance per luggage piece (regardless of weight) method.

The hand baggage with max of 7kgs is also expected at full service carriers too. I've been lucky to avoid it so far, had been let go for it before, but I've seen people forced to pay for the same excess as I had, that's on a full service carrier too, so I don't see what's unique with Air Asia on this one.

Oh hang on, U flew ORD-NRT-BKK on UA, then Air Asia BKK-KUL... no wonder you were surprised about the "weight policy".

LCC Terminal? LOL Well, welcome to Cattle Terminal *grin*... What were you expecting? In Asia, if they got a queue for a particular flight and the next desk is empty, there's never a guarantee that next desk is going to serve another flight! With Air Asia, there's a mishandling issue, workload issue, you name it.

As to the boarding, now that's THE reason why I've avoided Air Asia so far. It's amazing how good people are at rugby when boarding comes, and the best scrums are at Air Asia.

Lack of flexibility? It IS their policy not to allow flight changes within 48hrs unless they pull money off you. Air Asia make big bucks on last minute sales, but a lot of the times, they'd rather see that seat go empty than allow shifting... why?

Quote:
So in the end, I paid $307 RT per person for the flights on this "budget carrier". I could have flown MH for less ($274) and had assigned seats, gotten FF miles and a more generous baggage allowance.

Add $43 per pax to the MH fare for your 28kgs which they COULD have charged you...

In my opinion, you were lucky UA only charged you $50 for your sis in law for the the excess baggage... Oh, hang on, the allowance isn't weight based is it?

In the past, I've seen pax booking on US airlines so they can carry more weight...

Mandala499
When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
 
f1eddie
Posts: 208
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:04 am

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 9):
For that 18 kilo backpack you would have paid a fee (their limit is 15kg)

Nope i definately did not pay extra. I would have been fuming if i did have to pay it. I also flew Bangkok Airways and i did not have to pay an excess fee with them. Mind you it did cost me E80 for O/W.

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 9):
AK is Air Asia is believe, while FD is Thai Air Asia (I'm pretty sure, but I will double check)

Thats what i taught. Maybe then this explains why i did not pay an excess fee....
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AirNZ
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:09 am

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 4):
Research what exactly?. The baggage policy can be researched but even then it is just a number. I don't make habit of weighing my bags before I leave my house.

Sorry, but I don't see your point here. You clearly say that their baggage allowance was freely available but you clearly chose to ignore it and didn't bother to even check your bags weight. In other words, with this being "just a number" to you, you simply turned up and expected them to bend just to your whims. Absolute nonsense, and I see no grounds whatever for your objecting to it.

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 4):
And yes, all air carriers heck just about any business will have terms and conditions. Hence I referred to the "letter of the law". There is also common sense enactment of rules and regulations.

You accepted the Terms and Conditions as the "letter of the law" when you booked the flight......another example of how you expect these to be waived to suit you.

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 4):
If a patient comes 15 minutes late because they were stuck in traffic, I would not refuse to see them. It is called bending over backwards to please your customer. The airline would have lost NOTHING by letting take the earlier flight

A completely different scenario (although a commendable one) and has nothing whatever to do with "bending over backwards to please your customer" With all due respect, you have in this case continually expected Air Asia to simply pander to just whatever you wanted. If you had wanted the earlier flight, then you should have booked it in the first place as you obviously would have known the hotel check-out time relative to the flight you did book.
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flymd
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:27 am

Quoting AirNZ (Reply 12):
Sorry, but I don't see your point here. You clearly say that their baggage allowance was freely available but you clearly chose to ignore it and didn't bother to even check your bags weight. In other words, with this being "just a number" to you, you simply turned up and expected them to bend just to your whims. Absolute nonsense, and I see no grounds whatever for your objecting to it.

My point is that I did not weigh my bag before I left my hotel in Bangkok. I did not expect them to bend to my whims.

My objection has to do with howreasonable the policy is (or is not). Who travels on vacation with a single bag weighing less than 15kg. If excess baggage is going to be a way to "make up" revenue why don't you have a reasonable policy and just charge another $10 per person. It is just the sticker shock effect. Advertise this ridiculously low fare and then charge for every little thing so that in actuality you pay way more than you expected to.

Quoting AirNZ (Reply 12):
You accepted the Terms and Conditions as the "letter of the law" when you booked the flight......another example of how you expect these to be waived to suit you.

Of course I accepted the terms and conditions when I purchased the ticket, hence I paid the fees. Maybe you just cannot understand my letter of the law statement. You can be rigid and when the battle but you may not necessarily win the war.

Quoting AirNZ (Reply 12):
If you had wanted the earlier flight, then you should have booked it in the first place as you obviously would have known the hotel check-out time relative to the flight you did book.

I guess you have never tried to take an earlier or later flight before huh?. It is always so easy to make black and white statements.
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
rongotai
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:49 am

"Maybe you just cannot understand my letter of the law statement. You can be rigid and when the battle but you may not necessarily win the war."

Bullpit explained really clearly why an airline that sells non-changeable tickets will 'lose the war' if it then allows the expectation to develop that that 'non-changeable' tickets can, in fact, be changed.

On my business trips my regular practice is to buy a cheap - non-changeable - ticket, leaving home in the morning because I know precisely what flight I will be on. I buy a more expensive, flexible, ticket, coming home because I am never quite sure when I will want to travel. If I knew that my 'non-changeable' tickets still gave me a chance of a flight change I'd probably buy them. Also, when I turn up at the airport and say 'Can you put me on anything earler?', I would be really pissed off if I knew that when they replied 'no', that might be because they had just released a free seat to someone who hadn't paid enough to deserve it.

Therefore, for me, learning that Air Asia is inflexible about such things, gives them a customer service tick as far as I am concerned.

[Edited 2007-10-12 18:01:01]
 
f1eddie
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:50 am

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 13):
I guess you have never tried to take an earlier or later flight before huh?. It is always so easy to make black and white statements.

Yeah ill back you up here. My dad flew DL to Sarasota back in Aug. For some reason like yourself on his return he arrived to the airport early. Maybe by three hours or so. They let him and my uncle get an earlier flight to ATL. But i would hope that this is one perk that legacy carriers have. Not that it is always done. I have been told it really is up to the airlines discrection but i would never think a LCC would provide this for you. We did spawn the birth of one of the most ruthless LCC here!!!!!
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mandala499
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:51 am

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 13):
My objection has to do with howreasonable the policy is (or is not). Who travels on vacation with a single bag weighing less than 15kg.

I've done it before... a 2 week holiday with a total flying time of >20hrs to get there. How reasonable is the policy? Very! Most of their customers are short-holiday traveller. For me, if I cannot go on 15kgs, I pick an airline that allows me more... if it's more expensive, then that's the price of the extra baggage allowance. I really do not see how unreasonable the policy is. If someone offers "$10 BKK-KUL one way, on condition that no luggage is allowed", is that unreasonable?

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 13):
Advertise this ridiculously low fare and then charge for every little thing so that in actuality you pay way more than you expected to.

They declare how much you have to pay, and any additional charges that can apply should you exceed allowances in their terms and conditions... I don't see anything wrong with that. The only problem I have is that they don't advertise how much they sell their onboard food for! LOL...

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 13):
You can be rigid and when the battle but you may not necessarily win the war.

Did you win the battle or the war?
They're providing a service consistent with their terms and conditions, and their promise. If to achieve that they have to be rigid, so be it.

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 13):
I guess you have never tried to take an earlier or later flight before huh?

I guess we all have tried to take an earlier flight... But when refused, regardless of availability, it's their discretion. Yes, I've been refused earlier flights, but I don't it up as "their inflexibility"... Try and take a later flight? LOL, that's even less likely!

Those who paid $20 one way for the BKK-KUL would be happy with the terms and conditions of Air Asia group... why? They want more, they pay more (probably with another airline)...

Mandala499
When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
 
flymd
Topic Author
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 12:56 am

Quoting Mandala499 (Reply 16):
"$10 BKK-KUL one way, on condition that no luggage is allowed", is that unreasonable?

I'm not sure I understand what you are trying to say, but I did not say they should charge $10 for the BKK-KUL oneway.

Quoting Mandala499 (Reply 16):
Those who paid $20 one way for the BKK-KUL would be happy with the terms and conditions of Air Asia group

I'm sure they would, but I did not pay $20
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
mham001
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 1:02 am

You need to learn to wear the right shoes that will slide under the front of the scale and give it a little 'lift' when they are checking your bag weight.
 
TreeHillRavens
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 1:56 am

It's Air Asia. Just like Ryanair and Easyjet. A complete different model than those LCC carriers found in United States.
 
mandala499
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 2:08 am

FlyMD,
Then what's the difference between flying Air Asia for $20 one way or $200 return? Nothing! Just a different price, but your fare is still restricted. There's nothing to beware about regarding Air Asia... everything is written beforehand. If there is one thing pax should be aware about is that "they really do stick to their rules"...

So, care to enlighten us on why their policies are not reasonable? Such as:
1. A 15kg baggage allowance (Where it is stated in your terms and conditions of purchase as such)
2. Not letting you go on an earlier flight (Where it is stated in your terms and conditions that for your fare, there are no changes allowed within 48hrs of departure).
3. Sticking to their policies.

Otherwise, you're just venting at your frustration that Air Asia does not give leeway to customers who do not comply with their terms and conditions or that you cannot understand that Air Asia's idea of customer service IS to provide a product consistent with their terms and conditions (not relative reasonableness because other carriers would allow such leeways)...

Quoting Mham001 (Reply 18):
You need to learn to wear the right shoes that will slide under the front of the scale and give it a little 'lift' when they are checking your bag weight.

LOL, that's a really old and forgotten trick my friend!  Smile

Mandala499
When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
 
ikramerica
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 2:46 am

I find it interesting how so many people on these forums lambast USA carriers for lack of service, but then when someone from the USA points out how restrictive a non-US airline is in any way, all he gets is "you knew what you were buying" and "everybody does it."

No, everybody does NOT do those things. Not in the USA at least. I guess we are all just spoiled here by our great service... Big grin

Most non-USA flight baggage rules SUCK. End of story...

Quoting Rongotai (Reply 14):
Bullpit explained really clearly why an airline that sells non-changeable tickets will 'lose the war' if it then allows the expectation to develop that that 'non-changeable' tickets can, in fact, be changed.

WN must be doing something wrong then. Because they let you do all sorts of changes day of if there's room, and even change your ticket to another day without any penalty!

Quoting F1eddie (Reply 15):
Maybe by three hours or so. They let him and my uncle get an earlier flight to ATL. But i would hope that this is one perk that legacy carriers have.

Very common here in the USA. If there is plenty of room on the earlier flight, people are usually allowed to fly early, at least as a standby and usually, if you ask nicely, the CSR just gets you seats. If there is limited room remaining, you are often allowed to pay a small fee to fly earlier or standby and hope for the best. No airline that I know of in the USA would be so rigid that they wouldn't let you change to the earlier flight in some way if there was plenty of room and you were at the checkin desk. They certainly wouldn't make you buy a new ticket...

Though I've not flown SkyBus, so maybe they wouldn't allow it. Don't know.

Quoting TreeHillRavens (Reply 19):
It's Air Asia. Just like Ryanair and Easyjet. A complete different model than those LCC carriers found in United States.

And this is his point! When you fly WN for example, you pay a fare, and basically you get to where you are going with a reasonable amount of luggage for that fare, with some leniency on changes. 21kg would incur no extra charges (they had 4 bags, not 3, so that isn't 28kg each as some misunderstood), and WN allows for 3 bags! (most other carriers allow for 2).

Further, most carriers in the USA have no rule at all about the weight of carry on baggage, or if they do, it is never enforced. I have never, in my millions of flown miles, had a carry on bag weighed. I've had it sized before, but never weighed.

Even most non-USA carriers relax their baggage rules for USA flights because they have to match our higher level of service in that regard...
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
flymd
Topic Author
Posts: 166
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 2:52 am

Quoting Mandala499 (Reply 20):
So, care to enlighten us on why their policies are not reasonable? Such as:
1. A 15kg baggage allowance (Where it is stated in your terms and conditions of purchase as such)
2. Not letting you go on an earlier flight (Where it is stated in your terms and conditions that for your fare, there are no changes allowed within 48hrs of departure).
3. Sticking to their policies.

Okay, this is starting to feel like talking to a brick wall, but lets try again.

1. I never said that the baggage allowance was not stated in there terms and conditions. If that were the case, the excess baggage fees would not have been paid. Just stating an allowance does not make it reasonable. If they stated a 1kg allowance does it all of the sudden become reasonable?

2. Again, I never said that this was not in their terms and conditions. I never said that they HAD to let me take an earlier flight. All that I said was that it seems a bit unreasonable to let a flight depart with 1/3 of it's seats empty when you have customers who would like to take an earlier flight.

3. I never made a blanket statement that sticking to their policies is unreasonable. Of course in any company/organization there have to be ground rules. That does not mean that reasonable exceptions cannot occur.

Quoting Mandala499 (Reply 20):
Otherwise, you're just venting at your frustration that Air Asia does not give leeway to customers who do not comply with their terms and conditions or that you cannot understand that Air Asia's idea of customer service IS to provide a product consistent with their terms and conditions

"You're just venting your frustration (grammer corrected)"-DUH!. Hence the title of my thread was Beware of Air Asia, not Air Asia sucks. As I said, Air Asia is good for a certain type of traveller!

And I garantee you "terms and conditions" never contain things good for the customer, so please don't tell me that sticking to the legalese of terms and conditions is their idea of customer service. If so, that is pretty sad.
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
flymd
Topic Author
Posts: 166
Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:34 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 2:59 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 21):

THANK YOU!

Preach on Irkamerica, because I feel like people are just arguing to argue.

To say that I was happy to board a UA 747 (even with it's minimal IFE) after having flown Air Asia is saying alot!  Big grin

And for the record (though off subject), minus the lack of extensive IFE, UAs service was actually pretty good on the international sectors.
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
toltommy
Posts: 2741
Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2003 9:04 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 3:50 am

Nothing personal FlyMD, but after checking your profile, I'll take my chances with airline rules over doctors office and insurance company rules anytime.

As others have said, had you simply done a little extra research, a lot of this would have been revealed to you. You are an Anet member, you didn't think about asking a few questions before your travel?

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
but I wanted to give AK a try because who knowns when I would have the opportunity again.

Don't forget to add that into the value of the total price you paid.
A300/A310/A319/A320/A321/A332/A333 / 707/712/727/732/733/734/735/738/739/752/753
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flymd
Topic Author
Posts: 166
Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:34 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 5:34 am

Quoting TOLtommy (Reply 27):
but after checking your profile, I'll take my chances with airline rules over doctors office and insurance company rules anytime.

That is a really useful and relevant comment, it really added alot to this conversation.   

I'm not sure I know what your comment means and I would ask but I suspect you might not either. The great majority of "rules" that you encounter in health care are related to you insurance company/HMO and not your physician. I guarantee you that when you go to your doctors office, you are not given a 63 sub-article list of terms and conditions to read (i.e. the terms and conditions of Air Asia). But we digress, this is after all AIRLINERS.net

Quoting TOLtommy (Reply 27):
As others have said, had you simply done a little extra research, a lot of this would have been revealed to you. You are an Anet member, you didn't think about asking a few questions before your travel?

I really don't know how many times I can say the same thing, but I guess one more time may do it, so here goes......
Research is not the issue. Okay I did not do my research so no one else needs to say that. The point of my thread is "BEWARE". I think that the Air Asia policies are a bit restrictive, thats it. If you don't agree then you don't agree. I am simply imparting my experience. I said that AirAsia is good for a certain type of traveller.

Quoting TOLtommy (Reply 27):
Don't forget to add that into the value of the total price you paid.

Let me guess....... PRICELESS. Leave the sappy lines to MasterCard.
Clearly the experience was not that great.

[Edited 2007-10-12 23:05:49]
Fly the friendly skies of life!. Enjoy every minute.
 
flymad
Posts: 101
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 10:42 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 5:59 am

Quoting OHLHD (Reply 1):
That of course you will find on almost every airline in the world. Just think if every passenger arrives at the airport early and demanding to be put on an earlier flight.

[quote=FlyMD,reply=0]The supervisior literally let us sit at that airport for close to four hours while a flight was leaving in 1 hour with a third of it's seats empty. That is ridiculus, what did he or his company have to gain from that lack of lfexibility.[/quote

I agree that ir's just great customer relations, and with some of the flak that airlines are picking up with regard to how they treat their passengers, I would think that the airlines would be more flexible (obviously within reason).
Earlier this year I was on an Indian Ocean cruise from Durban and flew SA from JNB to DBN - i know - national carrier not LCC, but the principle remains the same. Anyway, I had reserved return flights to JNB for the afternoon as I was not entirely sure exactly what time the ship would dock and how long it would take to disembark and clear customs. As it turned out this happened quite speedily and we arrived at the airport 4 hours ahead of the planned flight departure. I might add that although we were flying SA, our fares were rock bottom non -transferrable ones. Upon enquiry at the desk as to whether it would be possible to change our flights to and earlier one, not only were our tickets changed but we literally had to run to get onto the new flight. Frankly, I was amazed - SA does not have a very good reputation for good customer relations here in South Africa (going by almost weekly reports in the daily rags) but all my experiences with SA have been very good and flexibility like this goes a helluva long way to improving passenger perception.
 
jbernie
Posts: 206
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2007 10:09 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 7:47 am

Quoting OHLHD (Reply 1):
That of course you will find on almost every airline in the world. Just think if every passenger arrives at the airport early and demanding to be put on an earlier flight.

Really? I just flew MEL-LAX-DEN with QF & Frontier, Frontier asked if we wanted to take the flight to DEN leaving in 40 mins which we did not know existed instead of waiting an hour and 40 mins for our scheduled flight. We declined as I did not think out luggage would transfer and we would just end up waiting that time in DEN, and at least we could go get some breakfast while waiting.

Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 8):
Another mistake, you should, Airlines have a weight limit and as such you should know how much you can carry and how much you are carrying.

Remind me to pack my bathroom scales for my next trip so I can randomly check the weight of my bags at any time. In fairness to the original poster, you can pretty much only guess how much your bags weigh.

In saying this I found it a little bit annoying when flying out on the last trip (DEN-LAX-MEL) that Frontier decided to religiously enforce its baggage limits on the DEN-LAX flight that was at best 2/3rds full. We managed to get our 3 suitcases slightly overwright down to two suitcases overweight and paid the US$100. Seems odd that we could have carried an additional bag and not paid any excess charges yet pay fines for fewer bags.

I wonder what the weight limit is for the passengers, maybe if i had stepped on the scales and was 8lbs over their passenger weight limit they would charge for that as well?

Either way, I won't travel Frontier again when heading to an Intl flight unless their baggage limit matches that of the intl carrier, will fly UA or AA instead I guess. They got their US$100 and lost about $400-600 for each trip my gf and I take to Australia, could be up to US$1500 if my gf's family comes with as well.

Please note that if we were flying on a full flight and had a flight distance which approached the maximum flight distance of the aircraft type then I would not blink an eye at the charges, I once flew LHR-SYD on QF hopelessly overweight after a very enjoyable round the world trip and they didnt charge 1c even though the Bangkok-Sydney leg was 100% full and to be honest i was expecting some kind of fine.
 
CXfirst
Posts: 3021
Joined: Tue Jan 30, 2007 8:13 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 8:27 am

Quoting OHLHD (Reply 1):
That of course you will find on almost every airline in the world. Just think if every passenger arrives at the airport early and demanding to be put on an earlier flight.

With SK from LHR-OSL, we got an earlier flight (were transitting from EK and had 5 hours, did not choose earlier flight in fear of missing it). This meant our onward connection from OSL (which originally was like 35 minutes) was now a good 4 hours. However, OSL is a much better airport to wait at than LHR.

-CXfirst
 
[email protected]
Posts: 16616
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:29 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 9:21 am

Flown AirAsia quite a few times, and other than the occasional delay experienced no problems at all. Look forward to next time flying KUL-BKI-KCH-KUL for under £30 all-in.  Wink
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
Reggaebird
Posts: 886
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 1999 7:43 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 10:12 am

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
SO TO SUM IT ALL UP:

So in the end, I paid $307 RT per person for the flights on this "budget carrier". I could have flown MH for less ($274) and had assigned seats, gotten FF miles and a more generous baggage allowance.

AK targets vacationers and the segment of the population that was not really flying before, hence their slogan "Now everyone can fly" (i.e.rural people heading to larger cities or people heading back home). All of these people will be travelling with a good deal of luggage as evidenced by the VERY LARGE line at the dedicated "Excess baggage" counter.

If you are flying with very minimal luggage, AK is okay (the new Airbus 320s are nice). Just get express boarding, come to the airport early and bring lots of patience.

FlyMD,

First of all, I want to say that I enjoyed reading your detailed and thoughtful post. However, I think that there is a core issue here. You have "Americanisensibilitis"! Sadly, it afflicts tens of thousands of Americans who travel outside the USA every year.

Unlike most of the rest of the world, in the USA, the airline industry tends to be more customer-centric and their rules are more flexible. Even the the American LCC's that have tried to tighten the reigns on American expectations have found that a cheap price isn't enough to keep "quality" passengers. Of course, the LCC's, as in other parts of the world, have a lock on the "unwashed masses" who used to take Greyhound (national bus service) but can now fly at comparable prices. However, with most Americans enjoying a relatively high standard of living, the American LCC's also need the regular business travelers who hop on the same flights over and over to help reduce corporate expenses. These folks need flexibility in schedules and baggage allowances (to transport equipment and goods) and the rest of us benefit from that.

I have personally met foreigners onboard JetBlue and Delta Song flights who were stunned that these two carriers consider themselves LCC's with the high levels of service that are offered. Conversely, as I am currently on assignment in the UK, l have also experienced Ryanair, Easyjet and FlyBE, which are more typical of LCC operations in the rest of the world. With these carriers, you either follow their restrictive rules or you will pay significant penalties.

So, in summary, I say to Americans, when you leave home, leave your American sensibilities at home and pack some patience and humility instead.

Reggaebird
 
User avatar
na747
Posts: 91
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 8:41 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 10:18 am

Thanks for the heads up, FLYMD!
My partner and I are flying AK/FD this week: KUL-PEN the 19OCT and PEN-BKK the 22OCT.
I did notice their restrictive bag weight limits on their website.
Luckily, we chose to purchase Express boarding.
The total for both tkts cost $122 per person, not bad, but most of it was taxes and fees.
Never flown them before, so lets see how it goes.
 
[email protected]
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RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 10:43 am

Quoting Reggaebird (Reply 34):
Americanisensibilitis

What a great word!  Big grin

There was a thread a couple of weeks ago about a American A.nutter and his wife who had to pay £300+ (I believe it was £, perhaps Euros) for excess luggage when flying with EZY.  Wink
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
dhr
Posts: 118
Joined: Mon Jun 04, 2007 7:35 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 10:43 am

Bottom line is that US passengers enjoy more flexibility with their LCC's than the rest of the world. I suppose that since all travellers to and from the USA enjoy more generous baggage allowances than travel to non US destinations. This I think is the issue when it comes to baggage allowances, especially after arriving on a flight from the US and where US passengers get burnt. It all comes down to reading the terms and conditions of each ticket rather than taking things for granted.
 
[email protected]
Posts: 16616
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:29 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 10:53 am

Copied-and-pasted from another A.net thread re. some Americans:

"Working on ryanair check-in we get people all the time who simply dont read what they are booking. Yesterday we made Ryanair £650 on a Dublin flight. A group of americans all turned up - golf bags (£20.50), and about 10KG excess (£55.00) Plus check in for their bags (£10.00) and airport check-in (£2.00). They were completely shocked but then they should have read the terms and conditions - this stuff is the basics!"

[Edited 2007-10-13 03:54:21]
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
FlyingAY
Posts: 416
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 2:26 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 10:57 am

Air Asia is a very typical LCC; tight baggage rules is something you should expect from a LCC. And keep in mind, that LCC in most parts of the world means Skybus-type of LCC not JetBlue-type. You can read about Skybus rules of flying in their website, just like you can read the rules from Air Asia website. They're also pretty restrictive, even though they're American. http://ask.skybus.com/about/rules-of-flying.shtml

I'm not saying that you should not be complaining, as you're very clearly stating that this is just about Air Asia not meeting your expectations. But to me it would seem that your expectations were a bit too high, as this thread really seems to just point out the obvious: LCCs have their strict rules and they are not known of their flexibility.

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 13):
Who travels on vacation with a single bag weighing less than 15kg.

I do. Every single time. I don't like to stay put and dragging two 15+ kg suitcases is not my idea of a vacation. Also, I think that South East Asia is very popular among backpackers, who commonly have one bag, not heavier than that. Air Asia with their cheap fares fits those people very well.

Quoting FlyMD (Thread starter):
At any rate, we arrived at KUL for our BKK return flight about four hours early (hotel checkout issues). There was an earlier flight leaving for BKK within the hour with 40 empty seats on it. When I asked if we could take the earlier flight, they said "No.

I know that this is common in the states, but yet again, the rest of the world is typically different. Even if you're flying big airlines like LH, SK or such. Unless you have a flexible ticket, changing flights is a no-no. Some airlines permit changes even with their lower fares, but at a cost that could be as much as you paid for a one-way trip. Of course, some airlines are more flexible towards their elites.

Quoting CXfirst (Reply 32):
With SK from LHR-OSL, we got an earlier flight (were transitting from EK and had 5 hours, did not choose earlier flight in fear of missing it). This meant our onward connection from OSL (which originally was like 35 minutes) was now a good 4 hours. However, OSL is a much better airport to wait at than LHR.

But was that with a strictly restricted ticket or a ticket that permitted changes?
 
Reggaebird
Posts: 886
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 1999 7:43 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 11:19 am

Quoting FlyingAY (Reply 39):
And keep in mind, that LCC in most parts of the world means Skybus-type of LCC not JetBlue-type. You can read about Skybus rules of flying in their website, just like you can read the rules from Air Asia website. They're also pretty restrictive, even though they're American. http://ask.skybus.com/about/rules-of...shtml

It remains to be seen if Skybus will survive. If you read user opinions about this new American LCC, it seems that the tide is starting to turn against them already. American passengers are starting to realize that a cheap ticket price does not equal cheap trip cost with this carrier.

Reggaebird
 
cx777fan
Posts: 289
Joined: Sat Feb 26, 2005 5:22 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 11:38 am

Quoting FlyMD (Reply 24):
To say that I was happy to board a UA 747 (even with it's minimal IFE) after having flown Air Asia is saying alot!

I was going to comment on the irony of someone flying UA complaining about Air Asia, but you beat me to it. Apart from paying excess baggage, I've experienced most of the other problems you had on Air Asia flying UA - long, chaotic queues at check in, refusal to budge on rules, pushy boarding. Add to that consistently rude "service", sub-standard in flight ameneties, entertainment and catering etc...At least when flying an LCC like Air Asia one knows exactly what to expect.

Having had my UA rant, I got stung by Air Asia's (Thailand) 15kg baggage rule earlier this year flying from Chiang Mai to BKK on a flight that was over an hour late. My bag was about 18kg. I just went through the charade of putting some books in my carry on. Letter of the Law can sometimes work in one's favour. I knoew that he knew that I knew that my total weight was identical, but it's just about playing the game sometimes!
 
MH001
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Nov 07, 2006 10:53 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 1:24 pm

Thank you for your report FlyMD...very interesting. it's an eye-opener and confirms what a money grabbing operation AK is. The LCCT in KUL is too small for the number of passengers - and the boarding is a joke. It is dangerous.

AK is the original Air Asia
FD is Thai Air Asia
QZ is Indonesian Air Asia
 
[email protected]
Posts: 16616
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:29 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 2:44 pm

Quoting Mh001 (Reply 38):
the boarding is a joke. It is dangerous.

Dangerous? You must explain it.

Quoting Mh001 (Reply 38):
The LCCT in KUL is too small for the number of passengers

That's why it's to be expanded. Surely you know that coming from Malaysia?

And it's obvious you'd be anti-AirAsia: you are a major fan of MH.  rolleyes 

[Edited 2007-10-13 07:54:50]
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
jbernie
Posts: 206
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2007 10:09 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 6:30 pm

Quoting [email protected] (Reply 39):
Quoting Mh001 (Reply 38):
the boarding is a joke. It is dangerous.

Dangerous? You must explain it.

I believe the intent was that a large group of people rushing to a small entry generally leads to someone getting hurt, trampled, pushed out of the way, etc etc. Some control in the boarding process is desirable so boarding the plane is a safe process.

Maybe just put random boarding #s on the boarding pass, all people with boarding #s1-30 come to the gate, 31-60 etc. And enforce the rules so people quickly learn that if the number isnt called they leave the line and wait. First X number of people can pay for a low #, $5 for the first group, $4 to be in the second, after that it probably doesn't matter, must pay at time of booking to avoid doubling up and all.
 
MH001
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Nov 07, 2006 10:53 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 9:06 pm

thank you for your post. that is why i think it is dangerous. I am a malaysian and i have to say that we do not understand the word 'queue'. I am ashamed that we do not give any leeway to parents with young children or even the elderly.

Pearson - i have followed your posts throughout and respect your opinions. the last one was a tad bit childish really.
so what if i am an MH fan?
i know that they are expanding the LCCT as i keenly follow the aviation news.

it does not change the fact that the government built it in record time without considering the implications or expansion of the terminal just so that it would open days before SIN's LCCT - enabling them to say that it is Asia's first LCCT. its all about who is first, who has the tallest or biggest building or the longest bridge. that is the mentality here.

we still have a long way to go before we become developed!

by the way - i am still pro-government as our opposition is more corrupt and much less credible. don't know whether that might upset you.
 
MH001
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Nov 07, 2006 10:53 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 9:08 pm

sorry - i meant to say thank you for your post jbernie!
 
UN_B732
Posts: 3532
Joined: Wed Jul 04, 2001 12:57 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 9:32 pm

This is an old topic here on A.net. LCCs aren't for everybody. Look at the full package before choosing your carrier.

You pay for a Kia Rio, you don't expect to haul as much cargo as you would with your Tacoma.

-A
What now?
 
imag
Posts: 64
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2007 5:11 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 9:59 pm

Quoting Reggaebird (Reply 30):
leave your American sensibilities at home and pack some patience and humility instead

I'm pretty sure that patience and humility weighs no where near 28 kilograms too! How does someone travel with a bag that weighs that much?

Isn't the limit 33 kilograms anyway? Sounds like you were cutting it close!
 
Vulindlela
Posts: 455
Joined: Sun Apr 07, 2002 10:34 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 10:54 pm

I would like to add that I flew Air Asia from KL to Cambodia a while back, turned up at the airport some 65km out of town only to realize at the ticket counter that my flight had been booked for the next day! The woman at the counter clicked a few buttons on the computer and changed my ticket to that day for no cost! I know a lot of other airlines that would never do that on a non-refundable ticket.
"If you take everything I've accomplished in my entire life and condense it down into 1 day, it looks decent!"
 
MAS777
Posts: 2766
Joined: Sun Jul 11, 1999 7:40 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 11:21 pm

Try flying Easyjet or Ryanair and you would be charged for checking-in even A single piece of luggage let alone be over the weight limit.

On excess weight - many airlines charge for excess baggage - some if not most even charge a percentage of the first class fare - for each kilo over the limit. On flexibility - most airlines do not allow travel on an earlier available flight - as someone's pointed out - otherwise we might as well all book on the last flights of the day and just turn up whenever we want earlier in the day to try and catch an earlier flight(!). Of course you can do that with many airlines as long as you book a full fare ticket and subject to availability.. but then again - you were flying a budget carrier which doesn't offer this facility...

...so i'm afraid i have to agree with many other replies here - am not quite sure what this complaint is about...
 
chrisrad
Posts: 967
Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2000 7:26 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sat Oct 13, 2007 11:57 pm

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 21):
Even most non-USA carriers relax their baggage rules for USA flights because they have to match our higher level of service in that regard...

Nothing to do with it, IATA rules for flights to and from the USA are piece system, whilst all other regions are weight system.

Having said that, on my most recent trip with DL we were charged $25 per bag for excess baggage and we were only a few pounds over each bag? Obviously sticking to the rules?
Then we had to buy an extra suitcase to pack our "excess" pounds into for USAir, yet ultimately the total weight is the same? Talk about stupid policys.
Welcome aboard Malaysia Airlines! Winner of Best Cabin Staff 2001,2002,2003,2004,2007,2009,2012
 
alangirvan
Posts: 522
Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2000 2:13 pm

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sun Oct 14, 2007 12:46 am

Nowadays, carrying bags is a Profit Centre for Low Cost Carriers. Ryanair now charge passengers to check one bag up to 15kg. Before they started charging for the first bag, their rule was that excess baggage would always be charged - no exceptions. The condition actually said "our agents are not allowed to turn away revenue."

It is not getting any better. For the new Long Haul Air Asia X, between Gold Coast, Australia and KUL, you will pay $7 (Australian) to check your first 15kg, and the amounts go up substantially after that. If you buy a lot while you are on holiday, you will be better off posting it home.

It is not just LCCs. Hong Kong Kai Tak Airport was very efficient at charging excess baggage fees for people flying any airline. The Unaccompanied Baggage counter did a lot of business.

All hotels is Asia should provide bathroom scales.
 
andaman
Posts: 2271
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:29 am

RE: Beware Of Air Asia

Sun Oct 14, 2007 1:37 am

Quoting MAS777 (Reply 46):

...so i'm afraid i have to agree with many other replies here - am not quite sure what this complaint is about...

 checkmark 

Same here.
Airline rules can be annoying, but when you buy the ticket, you accept them. And if you expect flexibility, you shouldn't choose a LCC. Don't know about US, haven't flown any US carrier.
Personally I like Air Asia, my flight few years back was better than on the most European LCCs.
The chaotic boarding sounds familiar, but I think that tells more about the cultural differences. And 6$ (around 4 Euros?) for the Express Boarding sounds really ok to me.
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"

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