Uncertain future for Malaysia Airlines

The news was hardly surprising considering the airline’s recent financial woes, but Malaysia Airlines recently announced that they had gone into receivership. Fortunately, it seems that the airline will continue operating normally in spite of this, at least in the short to medium term. We do know that the airline will remain a part of the oneworld alliance, and also that it will remain a full-service airline. However what the future holds exactly remains to be seen.

This sounds like the intended outcome will be more like Chapter 11 in the US (quicker restructuring and removal of certain obligations to employees) than what happened to Ansett …. I guess wait and see.

There are significant changes on the horizon for Malaysia’s national carrier. From September 2015, Malaysia Airlines in its present form will cease to exist and a new company with a new yet-to-be-announced name will take over operations.

Nonetheless, the CEO of Malaysia Airlines was quick to assure customers that the airline would continue to operate, bookings would be honoured and that members of Enrich, the airline’s frequent flyer program, would continue to be able to earn and use their miles. Customers have been told that they can continue with book “with confidence”. However not all of our members are entirely convinced.

I am puzzled by the ‘book with confidence’… to where exactly? Should I book to Europe ‘with confidence’ given they will likely axe those routes? can I book regional business class ‘with confidence’ knowing my flat bed on a 772 or a380 will likely be replaced by a 737 or a330 with inferior product? Can I book ‘with confidence’ knowing my flight will operate as planned, and if not, I will be re accommodated free of charge on another airline if my flight is cancelled at some stage in the future?

In the meantime, there has even been some speculation that the airline will seek to sell all six of its A380 super-jumbo aircraft as it looks to downsize its fleet and cut routes.

Many members express sympathy for the airline staff who may lose their jobs during the restructuring process. But the sentiment is summed up well by this member’s quote:

Hopefully when all this is over we end up with a great airline.

Follow the discussion HERE.


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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]