|Posted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 10:43 pm Post subject: Malaysia’s cramped low-cost terminal to expand: report
Malaysia’s cramped low-cost terminal to expand: report
KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 18, 2006 (UNI)
Malaysia’s recently opened low-cost airline terminal is to be expanded and upgraded next year in response to complaints about overcrowding and a lack of facilities, a report said Monday.
‘‘We will be providing better amenities and more chairs for the comfort of those using the LCCT (low-cost carrier terminal),’’ Malaysia Airports CEO Bashir Ahmad told The Star newspaper.
Bashir said that Malaysia Airports has been holding talks on the project with AirAsia -- the Kuala Lumpur-based budget carrier which is so far the only airline to use the terminal.
The Star likened the scene at the terminal to a ‘‘disaster relief centre’’, with weary travellers sitting on trolleys, lying asleep on the floor or slumped over tables at fast-food outlets.
The low-cost facility which is designed to handle 10 million passengers a year opened in March, just before neighbouring Singapore launched its own no-frills terminal in a race to secure the burgeoning budget sector.
From the start, the Malaysian terminal, a warehouse-style building located 20 kilometres (13 miles) from Kuala Lumpur International Airport, has been criticised for expensive food and a lack of seating.
There was also dismay that the high-speed train which connects far-flung KLIA with the city does not run to the new terminal and construction on an extension line is yet to start.
However travellers continue to flock there and aviation industry analysts say the facilities are a boost for budget airlines which face a constant battle to reduce costs.