AirAsia – AirAsia X to be more specific – is now offering its “BIG” members unlimited flights between Asia and Australia for just $118 USD a year. The airline hopes that its new scheme will combat a reduced demand for international flights amid coronavirus fears. Will it work?
Disrupting the travel industry
In response to a global animosity to flying during the coronavirus outbreak, AirAsia has unveiled a brand new scheme which it hopes will entice passengers to continue flying. The Unlimited Pass is available to AirAsia BIG members based in Malaysia and costs just 499 Malaysian Ringgit, the equivalent of $118 USD*.
BIG members who want to make the most out of this incredible saving must purchase their pass between now and 7th March. Once bought, the pass can be redeemed on flights to the following destinations:
While travel is unlimited – there are certain terms and conditions that apply to pass holders.
AirAsia hopes that its brand new Unlimited Pass will prevent coronavirus transmission fears from completely hampering the aviation industry. The CEO of Air Asia X Malaysia spoke proudly of the new incentive and suggested that if passengers follow WHO guidelines, air travel is safe. Benyamin Ismail said in a press release:
“This is unprecedented. However, AirAsia has always been known as the disruptor and we want to restore traveler’s confidence amid the current sentiment towards flying. Traveling is still very safe as long as everyone travels responsibly and is kept updated by World Health Organisation (WHO) or respective government’s travel advice.”
Any passengers who purchase the brand new Unlimited Pass will be able to fly as many times as they wish between the five listed countries for a year, between 2nd March 2020 and 2nd March 2021. By which time, the outbreak of coronavirus will hopefully be under control.
Will the Unlimited Pass work?
One of the key questions that springs to mind regarding AirAsia’s new travel pass is: will it work?
Of course, AirAsia will not want to put any of its customers at risk and by presenting this new offering, the airline makes us rethink just how much air travel should be avoided at this period in time. Whilst AirAsia’s deal will not be right for everyone, it does present an interesting opportunity. It could particularly benefit those who travel between Asia and Australia for business purposes.
In terms of leisure travelers, the success of the deal will stand the test of time. Many airlines have reported a reduced demand in sales suggesting a general wariness about non-essential international travel. However, those economical prices could be enough to convince some that a holiday is justified.
Despite the debate surrounding the health implications of the Unlimited Pass, there is another consideration about the astuteness of this offering. How do cheap unlimited airfares support environmental concerns?
Is AirAsia incentivizing cheap international flights?
Whilst, for now, the world seems to have its attention turned on the coronavirus, environmental fears are still prevalent in the global sphere.
AirAsia’s latest Unlimited Pass seems to do nothing positive for the environment in terms of incentivizing cheap international travel. At just $118 USD for a year’s worth of travel, it’s unlikely that passengers owning this pass will look to any other mode of transport than commercial aircraft. And that presents a problem in an age where we should all be responsible and conscious of the carbon emissions we produce.
That said, it’s unclear just how many AirAsia BIG members have already snapped up this deal. We contacted AirAsia for its comment on this but it was unavailable at the time of publication.
How do you feel about AirAsia’s Unlimited Pass? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
*Terms and conditions apply. Passengers still have to pay government taxes and fees, add ons and other charges. Pass holders are only allowed a total of 3 no-shows, and once you’ve exceeded this amount, AirAsia will forfeit your Unlimited Pass.