Air Asia is the brainchild of Malaysian businessman Tony Fernandes, who has been awarded several prizes in recognition to his entrepreneurial spirit. Fernandes acquired Air Asia in 2001, and managed to turn around a failing business venture into one of the world's most famous entrepreneurship projects. International destinations in nearby South East Asian countries were added in 2004, and three years later the airline broke passenger number records, nearly reaching 14 million. The company's main hub is in Kuala Lumpur, from where it operates more than 80 aircraft and flies to a similar number of destinations in the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East.
The airline's success is partly due to its low fares and extensive route network. Moreover, Air Asia offers a range of add-on services specifically designed for budget travellers including low-cost accommodation, insurance and SIM cards. The Malaysian airline is the only carrier to have won the World's Best Low Cost Airline Award for seven consecutive years.
Seat classes include Economy and Premium Flatbed (which is the equivalent of Business Class). Premium Flatbed seats come with a complimentary meal, free baggage allowance and priority check-in. Travelers on these tickets also get access to the airline's lounges.
All-In or Low Fares tickets are the cheapest, but fees apply if passengers wish to change a name or date. Premium Flex is a standard fare that offers more flexibility, free seat selection and access to dedicated check-in and immigration counters. Premium Flatbed fares are the highest but come with additional benefits as described in the previous paragraph. Visit Air Asia's fares page for an overview of fare classes and their respective inclusions and exclusions.
Ticket prices are based on demand, route, and how far in advance a ticket is booked. In addition, the airline offers heavily discounted promotional fares a couple of times every year through its BIG Sale program. AirAsia BIG is the airline's loyalty programme, which allows travellers to accumulate points when flying and using travel services from partner companies such as Tune Hotels, Booking.com or AVIS. Visit AirAsia BIG to learn more about this program.
Self check-in is available at airport kiosks, online and using the Air Asia mobile app. Please note that self check-in is mandatory for travelers flying out of Klia2 airport (Kuala Lumpur). Counter check-in is available on all other flights.