KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 13): The KL International Airport (KLIA) and Langkawi International Airport (LGK) are the world’s No.1 airports for the second quarter of this year (Q2 2021) in their respective categories in the latest global Airport Service Quality (ASQ) survey by Airports Council International (ACI).
Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) said both airports achieved the perfect score of 5.0/5.0 in the industry survey that benchmarks the world’s best airports in terms of facilities and service standards.
KLIA was previously in ninth spot, scoring 4.99/5.0 in the first quarter in the over 40 million passengers per annum (mppa) category, whereas LGK was in third spot with a score of 4.97/5.00 in the two to five mppa category.
"At KLIA, these encouraging results are a testament to the company’s efforts in continuously maintaining exceptional services and implementing safety measures, while it prepares for travel resumption,” group chief executive officer of MAHB Datuk Mohd Shukrie Mohd Salleh said in a statement. "Major initiatives contributing to the improved performance include the strict implementation of new travel standard operating procedures (SOPs) that heightened a safe and secure travel experience and the opening of 64 newly refurbished washrooms for the continued comfort of passengers."
He noted that LGK’s refreshed and improved terminal ambience, which resulted from its successful commercial reset initiative, has continued to contribute to the overall satisfaction of passengers passing through the terminal.
Mohd Shukrie said the airport operator has seen a gradual uptrend in passenger numbers by recording a 35% increase from the preceding month for overall traffic growth in July.
Last month, the airport group surpassed the three million mark at 3.3 million total passenger movements for its network of airports for the first time this year, with the majority traffic contributed by its Turkish asset, Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen International Airport (ISG).
"With the easing of border restrictions and curfews, ISG saw a 35% increase in its total passenger movements at three million compared to the preceding month, reaching 89% of its pre-Covid performance. In fact, the airport’s July 2021 domestic passenger movement performance at two million was extremely encouraging, as it exceeded the passenger volume for any month pre-Covid in 2019 with a 1.5% growth over July 2019," he said.
On the local front, MAHB recorded a nearly 40% increase in total passenger movements at about 260,000 (International: 72,000; Domestic: 188,000) last month compared to June for its network of airports here.
"Despite the continued interstate travel ban, border closure, and stricter travel restrictions around the region following new outbreak of cases, the marginal increase is a positive break for MAHB, following the recent government announcement allowing flexibility for those fully vaccinated to travel interstate, as well as the reopening of domestic tourism within the same state (for states that have progressed to NRP Phase 2) from Aug 10 onwards," he said.
In addition, MAHB is also looking forward to the pilot project of Langkawi Island which emulated the Phuket sandbox model by inoculating 80% of the island’s population in a move to open the island to fully vaccinated tourists.
"Apart from that, there is also the possibility of the resumption of domestic tourism activities across Malaysia in September that will provide the much-needed stimulus to airports, airline partners and the tourism industry," Mohd Shukrie said.