An Airbus from the Malaysian low-cost airline AirAsia, at LCCT airport in Kuala Lumpur.
An Airbus from the Malaysian low-cost airline AirAsia, at LCCT airport in Kuala Lumpur.

AirAsia soon in France

  Between Two Journeys

Dear English-speaking readers, this page is an automatic translation made from a post originally written in French. My apologies for any strange sentences and funny mistakes that may have been generated during the process. If you are reading French, click on the French flag below to access the original and correct text: 

It's probably the company I've taken most often, with all my travels in Southeast Asia! In this month of October 2009, AirAsia, the Malaysian lowcost, has just filed an application for authorization to practice in France.

Soon a return Paris-Kuala Lumpur to less than 400 €, as it is the case for London since March 2009?

An Airbus from the Malaysian low-cost airline AirAsia, at LCCT airport in Kuala Lumpur.
An Airbus of the Malaysian lowcost airline AirAsia, at Kuala Lumpur's LCCT airport.

AirAsia would then operate from Orly airport. The announcement was made by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak on Wednesday evening in Paris at the end of his four-day visit to France.

The DGAC (General Directorate of Civil Aviation) should quickly validate this request. We do not know yet when the line will open, nor how many flights per week will be proposed ...

Kuala Lumpur's practice is that this is a huge air hub serving many destinations in Asia-Pacific. I have often traveled too Malaysia Airlines, according to their promos, for this reason. Once in KL, it is easy and inexpensive to reach Bangkok or Phuket, Bali, Makassar or Jakarta, Vientiane, Hanoi, Siem Reap or Phnom Penh ... and even Australia, India and of course China.

Phang Nga Bay, Thailand, drowned in fog (AirAsia flight KL-Phuket).
Phang Nga Bay, Thailand, drowned in fog (AirAsia flight KL-Phuket).

AirAsia's competition may also further drive down the prices of other airlines for Asian destinations. Malaysian lowcost has a very good reputation in terms of safety (the planes are new), unlike so many others in this part of the world.

I do not have any stock at home, but their very small prices and their reservation system on the internet allowed me to organize steps that I could never have offered otherwise.

The principle: the earlier we reserve, the less expensive it is. There are regularly "free seats" offers to look for, tickets in the 20-30 € via KL for the nearest Asian destinations ... When my last trip, A / R KL-Tawau cost me € 70, return KL-Kota Bahru € 50.

AirAsia from Paris ? A godsend, really, for budget travellers in love with Asia.

• • • • • • • • • •

EDIT. July 2011: I finally flew on AirAsia X, departing from Paris, shortly after the opening of the line! ! ! To read here :
→ Paris - Kuala Lumpur on AirAsia X

EDIT. January 2012: Less than a year after the opening of the Paris-KL route, AirAsia decides to close its routes to Europe... Read :
→ AirAsia abandons flights from Paris and London

  Between Two Journeys

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  1. To have traveled a few times on Air Asia, I confirm that it is a very good deal. 400 euros Paris-KL, that would be great for you. They could not come so far right? Because our national company, which has of course the monopoly, is downright outrageous.
    Have a nice week end!

  2. JE DIS OUI !!!!! Petit à petit les Perhentian’s et Sipadan se rapprochent de nous 😀 Mais pourquoi Paris 😥 … c’est pas Marseille la capitale ??? 😆

  3. Hello Corinne
    ❓ Well, that's good for you to talk about, because I'm wondering about Air Asia and maybe you'll get some answers:
    - for luggage, I see that it is possible to choose the weight that we record up to 30 kilos with a slight supplement, have you tried? it's effective?
    - can you choose your seat? it works well?
    - do you have to collect your luggage between 2 flights on the same company (example London-Kuala Lumpur-Denpasar)?
    - did you see their premium class and worth it? is it comparable to a business? Which company to compare comfort in eco?
    - did you test the food in flight?

  4. Alors il va falloir que je négocie au moins deux semaines de vacances supplémentaires pour partir plus souvent ! 🙄

  5. @ Hélène from Mauritius: Pfff, yes, I know, I looked at the rates for Mauritius, it's not given ... An AirAsia flight that would pass through Mauritius, in my opinion, it's not for now.

    @Anthony: Apparently, they had also considered Nice, as a possible airport ...

    @Manta: So, I'll only be able to answer your questions on the Asian flights I've borrowed (I've never tested the London-KL flight yet, so I do not know if it's exactly the same, but in my opinion you will find a lot of information on their site).
    1 / Luggage: yes, during my last resas, I took 25kg of luggage. It must be indicated online when you buy the ticket. It then appears on your e-ticket, so no problem.
    2 / Choose your place: I do not know too much. I think so. I have never done it anyway. At one time, it was not the case, the seats were not even numbered, you went on the plane and you put yourself where you wanted. It's over now, you have a place number assigned on your boarding pass. It seems to me that when you resa online you can choose your place, for a fee. To check, then.
    3 / Collect your luggage: I would be tempted to say yes, you have to get your luggage and re-register, because that's what I had to do by chaining Kota Bahru-KL and KL-Tawau. But with the flight from London, I do not know. There may be information on the site ...
    3 / Classes: not seen the "premium", I can not answer your question. All the flights I took were, once again, domestic flights in Asia, or between Asian countries, and I do not remember seeing any significant difference between the seats in the front rows or in the back ... I do not do not know the level of comfort for the flight from London.
    4 / Food: I have tested some snacks and paid sandwiches on occasion, but not meals, so I can not answer you either. It must not be extraordinary, I think.

    @Malene: Eh eh! It gives holiday desires, huh, what kind of news?

  6. Hi Corinne,

    C’est une très bonne nouvelle que tu nous annonces là 😀 . Je fais pareil que toi quand je pars en Malaisie, vol sur KL puis j’organise mes vols sur Air Asia. Ils ont des vols un peu partout en Asie, c’est une très bonne compagnie. J’ai vu qu’ils ont le World’s Best Low Cost Airline 2009 par Skytrax, c’est pas mal ❗ . J’ai hâte de voir le prix des vols au départ de Paris 😉

    Merci pour l’info, je pense que ce blog mériterait d’être reconnu d’utilité publique (avec financement évidement 🙄 )

    A bientôt Corinne 🙂

  7. @Thib: Moi aussi… 😉

    @Alain: Oui, la compagnie est très bien « notée ». Et si je passais à « Petites Bulles d’Utilité publique » ? 😆

    @ Helen: Toi, évidemment, sans AirAsia tu n’aurais pas fait tout le périple que tu as fait cet été… 🙄

  8. Bin, désolé d’être le seul parmi vous à ne pas apprécier avec qui j’ai souvent voyagé mais se farcir 12h d’avion avec le pitch des sièges… je ne le souhaite pas à mon pire ennemi! 😯

    Par ailleurs j’ai une petite dent contre eux depuis le 25 février 09, date à laquelle ils ont commencé à attibuer des numéros aux sièges et à faire payer les numéros de sièges… figurez-vous que si vous ne payez pas votre numéro de place vosu allez vous retrouver à côté de n’importe qui mais surement pas à côté de ceux avec qui vous voyagez! vécu : ça m’est arrivé sur 4 vols de suite 😡 , ils se foutent même de ce que vous voyagiez avec un mineur, assis(e) tout(e) seul(e) entre deux personnes inconnues de lui et lorsque vous demandez à changer de place le steward/l’hotesse vous dit que ce n’est pas vraiment possible même si l’avion est vide… car ils s’empressent de condamner toutes les places non occupées… 😳
    As I know the annoyance of the Malays to deal with situations of conflict, I simply got up each time and sat on an empty row ... as of course, the staff pouted but no one came to tell me in face to join my place.

    Quant au tarif des vols, ajoutez les frais de dossier, les suppléments par bagage (attention le prix du billet suppose que vous ne voyagiez qu’avec un bagage de l’ordre de 5kg 🙄 ), la bouffe dans l’avion et je ne suis pas sur que les tarifs soient moins avantgeux que eux de Bangkok Airways par exemple, qui dans une optique autre, offre systématiquement l’accès au salon aéroport avec boissons, petit déjeuner etc. à ses passagers.

    Regarding AirAsia, I do not recognize the small dynamic company of 5 years ago that deserved at that time its title of best regional low cost with a nice staff (it does not cost anything either), it is now a big Ryanair type of money pump that I avoid to circulate in Asia, for the benefit of Bangkok Airways, Tiger airways, etc.

    M'sia recognizes that her biggest competitor is and I would not be surprised if they continue to make a fairly competitive rate policy to prevent them from spreading on the long haul.
    Si vous voulez rapiater 100€ pour arriver les genoux cassés à KL ou avec une phlébite, c’est comme vous voulez, personnellement entre l’une des meilleures compagnies au mponde en service classe éco (M’sia, Etihad, Qatar…) et « la meilleure compagnie low cost 2009 » (permettez 😆 😆 😆 ) il n’y pas l’ombre d’un dilemne en ce qui me concerne… et ne rêvez pas : Airasia pratique aussi le Yield management, les prix à 400 Euros, ce ne sera pas pour tout le monde 😉 essayez déjà de réserver un Londres/Kuala A/R sur vous verrez que vous en avez dans les 600£ sans les divers bagages etc.

  9. @ Wet & Sea Very interesting and rich, your comment. I think that Manta, with his questions for which I did not necessarily have a precise answer, will appreciate having your point of view as well, argued and lived. Thank you!

    For my part, having almost always traveled solo since the famous allocation of seats, I never had to suffer the inconvenience of being separated from others, and for good reason ...

    Otherwise, I have never made very long trips on AirAsia, so a possible discomfort of one to three hours, it supports very well. On the other hand, like you, I may be more cautious on long-haul routes from Europe. We should find testimonials of travelers who have already flown from London, and find out what it really cost them with food supplements, luggage, investments, etc., and know the conditions of comfort.

    For the luggage supplement, I seemed to remember that we only paid more than 15kg (but it may have changed?), "Packs" of 5kg or 10kg extra. I still see a young Malaysian in front of me, who had 17kg, and unpacked her bag at the time of the weighing, to remove two pounds of clothes from her checked bag, clothes that she kept with her in a plastic bag in the cabin ...

    Enfin, en Thaïlande, il y a certes pas mal de compagnies que l’on peut préférer. Mais pour rallier tout un tas d’autres destinations entre pays asiatiques (notamment l’Indonésie), les tarifs d’AirAsia restent quand même imbattables. Et puis, toujours en Indonésie, je préfère, quand j’ai le choix, faire confiance à un avion d’AirAsia plutôt qu’à un autre coucou des compagnies locales… 😕

    Quant aux départs depuis l’Europe, on va voir si on peut réellement ou pas toper un billet dans les 400€ en France. Pour l’heure, les compagnies que j’ai préférées, en terme de service et de confort, pour accomplir ce long trajet de plus de dix heures vers l’Asie au départ de l’Europe restent Malaysia et Singapore Airlines. J’ai bien aimé Emirates et Quatar, aussi, qui offrent souvent des prix très concurrentiels, car leurs avions sont neufs et tops (supers écrans individuels), le personnel très bien, mais leurs horaires sont souvent peu pratiques et l’escale à Dubaï ou Doha ou ailleurs est parfois bien longuette. 😯

    Le prix reste pour moi le premier critère, c’est vrai. Et je n’opterai pour AirAsia depuis Paris que si ça vaut vraiment le coup (pas pour gratter 20 malheureux euros). Car en surveillant régulièrement les promos, les variations de prix, et avec des dates flexibles à ±1-3 jours, on peut vraiment dénicher des tarifs dignes des lowcosts… Par exemple, pour mon voyage de cet été, l’A/R Paris-Kuala Lumpur, sur KLM, ne m’avait coûté que 540€ (avec des horaires décents et une escale à Amsterdam pas trop longue). 😀
    On this subject, read the post I published: Take off again


  10. Wet & Sea tells anything!
    I took a weight supplement to go from 15 to 20 kg, between Bali and Kuala, it cost me € 2.50; I bought my ticket VERY in advance, I paid 12 euros including taxes, 3 hours flight !!
    So, stop the systematic reviews, I have been taking Air Asia for 4-5 years, all brand new, food aboard not included, but ridiculously cheap (2 € a meat-vegetable tray); the flight has returned to me 14 €!

  11. @ DNL4U: The Wet & Sea review is actually about Air Asia flight from London, not about Air Asia flights in Asia, which we all appreciate, I think. Unbeatable rates and new planes, as you point out. And even the possible "supplements" are indeed derisory.
    On the other hand, not sure that the fare is really competitive from Europe, compared to the prices and regular promotions of a whole bunch of other companies, like Emirates, Malaysia, Qatar, etc.
    That said, nothing to get upset ...

  12. @ Wet & Sea Thin then, no more flight for Manado ... You teach me that. But hey, as you say, he remains Malaysia or Silk Air. I say that you are the voice of wisdom ...

  13. About Manado is over, Air Asia has suspended flights since the end of February 2010, Lembeh will become painful to access.
    Le segment Singapour-Tawau a aussi disparu à la même date, j’ai dû prendre l’un des derniers vols, adieu Sipadan en direct depuis S’pore. 😥 .

    Quelques nouveautés 2010 : des bookings fees appliqués pour le paiement online (LOL quand sait que est 100% net.. 😯 ) et quelques suppléments à payer pour avoir le droit de voyager sur un siège à côté de ses accompagnants (même pas un « Hot seat », juste un siège normal), sinon ils jouent les sièges à la roulette, ce qui ne leur apporte rien mais frustre simplement les voyageurs.

    Résultat, la plupart de mes vols régionaux sont maintenant sur MH ou sur SilkAir…avec une différence de prix pas énorme mais un service imcomparablement meilleur. Un jour on découvrira que n’est pas la compagnie sympa que l’on croit, mais puisque je dis n’importe quoi.. 😆 😆 😆

    English proverb that I often come out with: "pay peanuts, get monkeys" ❗