Malaysian carrier AirAsia X could fly between Perth or the Gold Coast to Auckland or Christchurch, according to the airline’s CEO Azran Osman-Rani.
Osman-Rani told attendees at an airline conference in Sydney that AirAsia X had a “golden opportunity” to enter the trans-Tasman market if there was consolidation between Air New Zealand and Pacific Blue’s services as a result of their alliance. “The earliest opportunity would be the end of the year,” he said. “We have gone into the market and met the airports in New Zealand. We will get there – it’s when.”
Separately, Osman-Rani said he was optimistic that the airline would be granted rights to fly to Sydney by the Malaysian government in 2011. AirAsia X has long been seeking access to the potentially lucrative route but has had recent attempts denied by the Malaysian government, which many believe is trying to shelter Malaysia Airlines from competition on the route.