Airline on an SA high
MALAYSIA Airlines has been bleeding badly but its South Australian business is in such good health it is lifting passenger capacity by 400 seats a week.
Mounting losses at Malaysia Airlines have prompted a radical rescue plan that involves cutting costs by 20 per cent, ceasing services on many unprofitable routes and stopping corporate sponsorship.
The Malaysian national carrier lost $222 million in the December quarter amid soaring fuel and staff costs, and needed more than $1.4 billion to solve its cash crisis.
Without the rescue plan it would have run out of cash by April, the global carrier said.
However, for its four SA flights each week, Malaysia Airlines is switching to larger 747 aircraft.
Malaysia Airlines state manager Richard Green said the move would provide an extra 400 seats per week from March 26.
"Adelaide's pretty right because we have been making a profit," he said. "Naturally we have got to watch our expenses like everyone else, but at this stage we are increasing our services, not decreasing."
SA's strong performance was due to several factors.
"We have been established here for some time and are well-known in the market, and the agents know the product," Mr Green said.
Malaysia Airlines is a major corporate sponsor in SA, with contracts including the Adelaide Festival of Arts, South Australian Jockey Club, South Australian Cricket Association and Balaklava Racing Club.
"All of our contracts are staying so we're pretty right with that," Mr Green said.
Malaysia Airlines employs 86 people in SA, including 65 at its national call centre in North Terrace, city. It said in its rescue plan that only three of its 10 Australian routes were profitable.
Jamo wrote:Nice to see the "Big Birds" returning to our skies and the new airport. It has been a long time since Ive seen passenger 747's. Something very "wow" when you see those great leviathins cruising through the sky.
Wonder if we will ever see the Airbus A380 in our skies?
AG wrote:The vast majority of flights in and out of Adelaide are just Qantas 737s. A lot of the international flights tend to be operated by 777s, with the rare 747 now and then.
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