Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Subang, Selangor, may soon be crowded as airlines operating from there are expanding and new budget carriers are coming in, despite an expected slowdown in global travel.
Business Times understands that Lion Air, Indonesia’s biggest low-cost carrier, will commence flights this month from Hat Yai in Thailand to SkyPark Terminal.
Lion Air currently operates daily Jakarta-Kuala Lumpur flights from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang.
It now plans to offer four flights per week on the Hat Yai-Subang route via a collaboration between its subsidiaries, Thai Lion Air (TLA) and Malindo Air.
TLA is commencing flights on March 21 on four routes from its newly-created hub in Hat Yai to Subang, Medan in Indonesia, and Surat Thani and Hua Hin in Thailand.
It is learnt that Wings Air, also a unit of Lion Air, has expressed interest in operating flights from Indonesia to SkyPark Terminal using its ATR 72-500/600 turboprops.
Wings Air is expected to submit its application to the Transport Ministry soon for approval to launch flights in late next year or early 2016.
“SkyPark Terminal is getting very busy. Existing airlines are pressing ahead with plans to expand their fleet and routes in spite of an expected slowdown in travel demand. Everyone wants to compete to get a larger share of the pie,” said a source.
SkyPark Terminal caters for turbo-prop domestic and regional international commercial flights operated by Malaysia Airlines’. budget carrier arm Firefly, Tan Sri Vincent Tan’s Berjaya Air and Malindo Air, which is owned by National Aerospace and Defence Industries Sdn Bhd and Lion Air.
SkyPark Terminal also caters for charter planes and military aircraft, and is the homebase for Eurocopter Malaysia.
Swiss-based VistaJet Holding SA, which started operations in 2008, provides private jet travel worldwide.
Future developments include a mixed development commercial project adjacent to the terminal.