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Air Asia announce new fees if you want to check-in at the airport counter

Tanutam Thawan

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The AirAsia Group has announced it will begin charging travellers a fee to check in at airport counters – you know, that bit in the terminal where it says “Check In’. Even better, their excuse for the new charge… in part to encourage customers to “minimise physical contact with staff during the coronavirus pandemic”.

Malaysia’s AirAsia last month reported the biggest quarterly loss in its history due to the impacts the closing borders and grounded airlines has had on travel demand, with revenue down 96%.

At this stage the new charge has not been announced for the Thai franchise, Thai Air Asia. But travellers on the some of the parent Air Asia flights, who don’t check in via the airline’s website, mobile app or airport kiosk, will be charged the equivalent of 20 Malaysian ringgit (150 baht) for domestic flights and 30 Malaysian ringgit (225 baht) for international flights. This new rule is applicable at airports in Malaysia, Vietnam, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Taipei, Kaohsiung and Honolulu.

There are exceptions. Counter check-in will still be provided free to guests with reduced mobility, Premium Flex or Premium Flatbed guests, those affected by flight disruptions or if there’s been an airport kiosk outage.

Travellers who want to avoid the new counter check-in fees can either check-in online or use the Air Asia kiosks in the airports to scan or enter their flight details and receive a boarding pass.

The AirAsia Group COO Javed Malik says he hopes the new fees will help “motivate travellers to make use of the airline’s investment in digital technology”.

“In view of the Covid-19 pandemic, these self-check-in facilities have become very crucial in minimising physical contact between our guests and staff.”

In response to the huge losses the airline has had to shoulder, officials say they have applied for bank loans in its operating markets and had “been presented with proposals from investment bankers, lenders and potential investors to raise capital”.

The newly announced add-on fees for AirAsia are still below the European budget carrier Ryanair who charge 55 euro (2,000 baht) charge for airport counter check-ins. That charge was put in place before the Covid-19 outbreak.

 

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Tuesday, September 1, 2020 at 4:27 pm

    Very clever.
    They have few customers and they announce extra fees!
    Thai greed survives no matter what. The cannot stop themselves.

    • Avatar

      David Tucker

      Tuesday, September 1, 2020 at 11:29 pm

      From the article: “At this stage the new charge has not been announced for the Thai franchise, Thai Air Asia.”

      Air Asia is a Malaysian company. Only flown with them once, from Udon to Phuket. Price was right.

  2. Avatar

    Perceville Smithers

    Tuesday, September 1, 2020 at 4:36 pm

    Fewer customers, less staff. Encouraging customers to self-serve.

  3. Avatar

    Mika Heikkinen

    Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at 8:18 am

    AirAsia has the worst customer service i have seen in any company in long time.
    First of all, they don’t have it- everything is redirected to a chat bot named Ava.
    I could write an essay of the Air Asia pass issue but i leave it with just a comment- shit.

    And to refer to covid19 to make even more contactless traveling is just embarrassing for them.
    I flew Bangkok to Phuket couple of days ago with my family.
    During check in they couldn’t put us to sit together so i thought the plane was full.
    Surprised to see more empty seats in the plane than occupied.
    So im real Covid19 spirit they decided its better to separate people from family and mix with other and upon this put them all in same area of the plane. Empty rows of seats everywhere but people sat next to each other.
    Totally embarrassing to see in the name of Covid19.
    Shame on AirAsia

  4. Avatar

    Bahtboy

    Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at 11:43 am

    I am an Air Asia “BIG” member and as such I receive vouchers from Bangkok Bank for free baggage and “Hot” seats which are allocated at check in. So my frequent flyer “BIG” status has now virtually been annulled. Think about it, Air Asia.

    • The Thaiger & The Nation

      The Thaiger & The Nation

      Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at 12:29 pm

      As the article says, it is not currently being applied to Thai Air Asia.

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