by BERNAMA / pic by TMR FILE
KUALA LUMPUR – KL International Airport (KLIA) has improved its ranking further to be the world’s ninth best airport in terms of service quality in the first quarter of 2021 for the category of over 40 million passengers per annum (mppa), according to a survey.
In the global Airport Service Quality (ASQ) survey by Airports Council International, KLIA achieved a score of 4.99 over 5.00, up from 4.98 in 2020. Last year, it was ranked one of the world’s top 10 airports in the same poll.
In a statement today, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) group chief executive officer Datuk Mohd Shukrie Mohd Salleh said apart from KLIA, the group’s efforts to improve service levels saw Langkawi International Airport (LGK) named as the world’s third best airport in the two to five mppa category, scoring 4.97 over 5.00 in the ASQ survey during the same period.
He said the group continues to leverage on the lull period caused by international and domestic travel restrictions to carry out various initiatives to heighten passenger experience and ensure airport readiness when passenger traffic picks up again.
“Although we are facing an extreme contraction of traffic, we are not complacent when it comes to ensuring our services and facilities at the highest level.
“The encouraging results borne by the airport community’s efforts at both KLIA and LGK in upholding exceptional services and safety measures in the new travel norm will certainly help restore passenger confidence,” he said.
ASQ benchmarks the world’s best airports in terms of overall passenger satisfaction for terminal safety, facilities, services and cleanliness.
Last month, the total number of passenger movements for Malaysia Airports was about two million for its local network of airports as well as its Turkish asset, Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen International Airport (ISG).
Mohd Shukrie said the country’s border remains closed and movement control orders continue to be imposed as daily COVID-19 cases have been on the rise again recently.
Nevertheless, total passenger movements for the local network of airports in April was registered at 630,000, which was close to 8.0 per cent increase compared to the preceding month.
This was borne by the pickup on airline operations for the domestic sector with an increase of 161 weekly flights or 19 per cent growth compared to March 2021, sustaining an average load factor above 57.0 per cent, he said, adding that AirAsia registered the highest average load factor of 60 per cent in April.
“(A total of) 1.89 million people in Malaysia have been vaccinated under the COVID-19 National Immunisation Programme so far with the majority being front-liners and senior citizens.
“The vaccine rollout planned for the year may help pave the way for gradual recovery,” he said.
As for Turkey, the country has recently announced lockdown relaxation allowing interstate travel during non-curfew hours.
In April, due to the previous partial border closure, ISG recorded 1.4 million passengers which was a 20 per cent drop from the preceding month.
“Despite the decrease, local airlines such as Pegasus and AnadoluJet remain optimistic with the former adding Shymkent, Kazakhstan, to its network of operations with a weekly flight that is expected to launch this month,” MAHB said.
To date, they are operating a total of 56 domestic and 79 international routes in 48 countries, the airport operator said.