Tony Fernandes: AirAsia airlines have already paid back nearly everyone

AirAsia Aviation Group Limited (AAAGL), the aviation arm of Capital A, has announced that they have already finalised over 99% of all customer queries for refunds and will work towards progressively settling the final 0.8% in the coming months. It reaffirms its commitment to resolve all refund requests caused by the ongoing effects of the pandemic as soon as possible.

AAAGL includes AirAsia Malaysia, AirAsia Thailand, AirAsia Indonesia and AirAsia Philippines, which operate smaller narrow-body aircraft like the Airbus A320. For guests who previously booked flights on AirAsia X (AAX) and Thai AirAsia X (TAAX), which operate larger wide-body aircraft like the Airbus A330, AirAsia says there are firm plans in place to compensate all affected guests within the coming months.

Capital A Group CEO Tony Fernandes said, “AirAsia airlines have already paid back nearly everyone.  AirAsia has opened the world to so many people and the majority of our guests decided to take a credit shell to help us which we thank them for. Now that travel restrictions have been removed substantially in our major markets, we saw that many of our guests have already utilised their credit shells to start travelling again.” 

He also added that there is often confusion between AirAsia Aviation Group (AAAGL) and medium to long haul affiliate airlines AirAsia X and Thai AirAsia X (TAAX), which are separate entities. He said AAX was in a much more difficult situation with international borders closed, so they were completely grounded for over two years with limited cash flow coming in during that period.

Following the debt restructuring exercise and the resumption of international travel, AirAsia X have started paying their guests with outstanding credit back with travel vouchers equivalent to the amount owed. Thai AirAsia X was also similarly affected by the pandemic and they are also working to settle all outstanding guest entitlements in the near future through refunds and credits.

AirAsia X CEO Benyamin Ismail said, “It’s great to be back in the air after two long years in hibernation. We have resumed flights to Sydney, Delhi and Seoul already and are planning to announce a number of new routes in the near future to our most popular destinations and even more.

“We understand the frustration from our guests who were waiting for reimbursement caused by flight cancellations during the pandemic. However, we are ensuring they get back what they paid for future use, in the form of full credits for such amounts paid, by way of travel vouchers.

“Under the terms of the scheme of arrangement that was sanctioned by the High Court further to our recent debt restructuring, we are legally restricted from making any cash refunds to our guests.  However, AAX is pleased to extend credits by way of travel vouchers to our guests, which are redeemable with immediate effect. These travel vouchers are valid for five years and may be used for future travel to any of our medium to long haul destinations which will continue to be increased and made available throughout this year and beyond. 

Benyamin shared that the majority of affected AirAsia X guests totalling over 155,000 have already received their travel vouchers. AirAsia X aims to complete the issuance of all remaining vouchers within the coming weeks.

If you have outstanding credit or an unused RM499 unlimited pass with AirAsia X, the airline has issued travel vouchers that are valid for 5 years. According to the terms and conditions, these vouchers are only applicable for AirAsia X flights which are currently operating between Kuala Lumpur to Sydney, New Delhi and Seoul. Unlike the previously issued credit, these vouchers can only cover the base fare and you can’t use them to pay airport taxes, fees, insurance surcharge and even add-ons such as baggage, meals, seats and etc.

As part of their commitment following the debt restructuring exercise, all affected AirAsia X guests will be entitled to receive a 0.5% one-off payment of their outstanding paid ticket fee in March 2023. Affected guests may potentially receive a portion of AirAsia X’s profits if it achieves certain targets for the financial years ending 2023-2026 as outlined in the Explanatory Statement.

Source: Soyacincau

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