Koh Samui, SUNDAY 26 October 2008 – Firefly, your community airline and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines launched its new route from Subang to Koh Samui onboard the new aircraft ATR72-500 at 9.35 this morning. On board the flight was guest of honor, Vice President of Tourism Malaysia, YB Dato’ Seri Mahdzir B. Khalid, representing the Tourism Minister of Malaysia, Dato’ Sri Azalina Othman Said. Accompanying him on the flight was Assistant Director of Tourism Association of Thailand (KL), Ms Saratwadee Asasupakit, and Firefly’s Head of Communications and Marketing, Ms Angelina Fernandez. The arrivals, along with other commercial passengers, were welcomed with the customary fresh Thai coconut fruit drink and warm smiles, led by the Head of Tourism Association of Thailand (Koh Samui).
The flight marks the first of Firefly’s direct flights from Subang, Kuala Lumpur to the pristine island with a frequency of four times a week. Firefly currently flies to Koh Samui from Penang weekly on Mondays, Wednesday, Fridays and Sundays.
Firefly’s direct flights into Indonesia and Thailand is very significant for us as it establishes both Penang and Subang as a gateway for IMT-G. Kuala Lumpur and Penang are developed cities with excellent banking and financial infrastructure, connectivity to the whole of Malaysia’s renowned and recognized holiday destinations. They are blessed with a good variety of international hotels to choose from and a diverse multi cultural heritage that enables our commercial hubs to play a significant role that can and will spur growth into IMT. I believe the challenges posed by the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) can now be overcome with Firefly serving these region. said VP of Tourism Malaysia, YB Dato’ Seri Mahdzir B. Khalid.
He added; “Connectivity is key in operating an airline, and Firefly is exemplifying this point. Firefly’s soon to be announced code sharing arrangement with its parent company Malaysia Airlines will the gateway for Malaysia, Sumatera, Thailand to European, Oceana, Asian, Americas and Middle Eastern markets. This in-turn will bring economic growth and boost tourism in the region”. It is certain that Firefly is playing its role in promoting the IMTGT agenda. I dare say, that Firefly is truly a full fledged IMT carrier.”
Firefly is a full fledged IMT carrier. Our network expansion is focused on Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand only. Infact by the first quater of 2009, we will be introducing many more new destinations in this growth triangle. said Ms Angelina Fernandez in her statement during the press conference held at Koh Samui soon after her arrival.
She added that, “Koh Samui has always been a popular destination known by name but not by connectivity. We expect a lot of first time leisure travelers to this island from KL now that we are connecting the capital of Malaysia directly through this route. Now, more people can experience and enjoy what this beautiful island has to offer. Similarly, we are honored to be able to encourage the people of Thailand to visit KL and ultimately, Malaysia. We fly to many interesting Malaysian destinations such as Langkawi, Kuala Terengganu and Kota Bharu. This new connectivity between Subang and Koh Samui is also very convenient for expatriates living in Koh Samui to do their Visa runs and at the same time take the opportunity to explore Malaysia and Indonesia though our new routes.
She also announced that Firefly today commence flights to Sumatera, from Subang to Pekan Baru and from Penang to Medan and Banda Acheh.
“We expect Koh Samui to be one of our top Thailand destinations and we are happy to be able to provide the service, which is why we also have holiday packages via Firefly Holidays which provide customised as well as DIY packages to suit the needs of our passengers,” quipped the Ms Fernandez.
Holiday packages with Firefly Holidays starts from as low as RM 180* per person to RM 2800* for a 3 days 2 nights stay, fitting in everyone’s budget and requirement. In short, we custom ise your holiday package.
“Firefly Holidays specializes in group bookings of ten persons or more where we customize the package according to the needs of our customers. All the public need to do is write in to us at email@example.com and we will do the rest,”
The average air time for a trip to the island from Subang airport is two hours. With direct flight now available, would be passengers from KL will not have to worry about loosing time for transit via Penang. The timing of the flight is also essential in terms of checking in and out of the hotel as it isn’t too early nor too late in the day. Holiday makers would certainly take this as a major key point in planning their holidays to the island.
“I would like to encourage all our passengers take full advantage of our on-going promotions which are incredible values with low fares. You can book your tickets or holiday pacakages online at your convenience at www.fireflyz.com.my or contact your local travel agent.,” Ms. Fernandez further noted in her statement.
Firefly operates directly from Subang and Penang airports. Their new aircraft is all about COMFORT. It provides a generous 20kg baggage allowance with NO additional charges. Operating with smaller aircraft means less congestion at check-ins and baggage collection thus enhancing customer convenience satisfaction and flying experience with jet-like comfort. This convenience also includes designated allocated seating for all passengers. And to cap it all is its variety of complimentary refreshment and light snack on board. All these values for LOW FARES.
By August next year, Firefly would operate with a total of 10 ATR72-500 serving both domestic and regional routes, including network expansion into Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. With such modern and advanced aircraft, Firefly is keen to start its services to other Sumatran provinces such as Jambi, Padang, Bengkulu and Pangkal Pinang, as well as Pulau Batam, and Thailand by next year using three hubs – Subang, Penang, Johor Baru. Firefly commenced its inaugural flights from Subang to Koh Samui and Johor Baru on the 26th October 2008.
The ATR72-500 is a cost-effective short-haul aircraft manufactured by ATR, a European joint venture between EADS and FINMENCCANICA via its subsidiary Alenia Aeronautica. Benefiting from the in-service experience of more than 670 ATR aircraft flying worldwide, it boasts proven average dispatch reliability of 99.6%.
Equipped with state of the art technologies, the ATR 72-500 is also a very reliable and easy-to-maintain aircraft, and offers optimal performance in the short-haul routes operated by Firefly.
The unique features of ATR compliment Firefly business operations in terms of network coverage in the secondary routes that could not be viably served by the single-aisle jet aircraft. It consumes substantially less fuel and incurs lower operating and maintenance cost. In short, it is cost efficient. It is also very environmental friendly. These are essential and significant features for our business model.
“This aircraft is well suited for our business model and cost structure. With our new aircraft, passengers are now enjoying better comfort, convenience at low fares, in short incredible value” said Angelina C Fernandez.