Indonesia AirAsia X to become a charter carrier

Indonesia, air transport

Thai AirAsia X aircraft at Don Mueang Airport in Bangkok

It is official: Indonesia AirAsia X will stop its activity as a regular carrier from this coming January. The airline was only flying a single route between Denpasar and Tokyo and never succeeded to impose itself as an alternative to other carriers between Bali and Japan. 

Indonesia AirAsia X will stop operating as a scheduled carrier from this coming January, transforming itself into a non-scheduled commercial carrier. The airline will then operate as a purely charter air provider, which could help it to secure easier traffic rights, particularly to Japan and China PRC.

The carrier’s only scheduled operation – a seven-times weekly service between Denpasar and Tokyo Narita using an A330 – will be suspended in January, the AirAsia X Group disclosed in its third quarter results. IAAX already terminated a regular service between Jakarta and Tokyo in October.

“With the challenging operational environment in Indonesia, primarily due to the series of natural disasters that occurred in proximity to Bali, the company is underway to evaluate the available options for our Indonesian associate to ensure sustainability of the company with the last schedule flight from Bali to Narita will end in January 2019,” says AirAsia X group newly appointed CEO Nadda Buranasiri.

“Moving forward, AirAsia X Indonesia will operate on a non-scheduled commercial airline basis.”

IAAX posted a net loss of $1.53 million in the third quarter of the year, compared to a profit of $2.15 million a year ago. The mediocre performance was due to the natural catastrophe hitting Indonesia which translated into a 32% drop in passengers carried. At the same time Indonesia AirAsia X has seen its costs jumping by 34%, a consequence to the rise in fuel prices.

However, some of the routes will be transferred to sister company Indonesia AirAsia which will be able from Bali to Japan, especially with the arrival of the future Airbus A320neo.