AirAsia X to stop flying to Europe, India

Malaysian long-haul budget carrier AirAsia X will stop flying to Europe and India from its Kuala Lumpur base due to soaring taxes and higher jet fuel prices, it said on its Facebook page today.

“AirAsia X will concentrate capacity in our core markets of Australasia, China, Taiwan, Japan and Korea,” the carrier said.

Air Asia X’s exit from the European market comes after the European Union implemented an emission trading scheme that put carriers from North America and Asia at a disadvantage as their aircraft need to travel a longer distance to Europe.

The withdrawal from London and Paris means AirAsia X will compete more directly with Singapore Airlines’ new long-haul subsidiary Scoot, which will kick of its maiden flight to Sydney in the first half of 2012.

AirAsia X said it will suspend flights to Mumbai from January, while the services to New Delhi, London and Paris will cease in March.

AirAsia X is a separate entity from AirAsia Bhd, although both were founded by Malaysian tycoon Tan Sri Tony Fernandes. – Reuters

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