Malaysia's budget long-haul carrier AirAsia X cleared for US flights

AirAsia X said it gained approval from the United States' Federal Aviation Authority and was considering flights to several US states including Hawaii.
AirAsia X said it gained approval from the United States' Federal Aviation Authority and was considering flights to several US states including Hawaii. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

KUALA LUMPUR (REUTERS) - Malaysia's AirAsia X on Tuesday (Jan 24) said it has become Asia's first low-cost carrier to receive approval to operate scheduled passenger flights to any destination within the United States.

The long-haul airline in a statement said it gained approval from the United States' Federal Aviation Authority and that it was considering flights to several US states including Hawaii.

"Our expansion up until now has concentrated on Asia, Australasia and the Middle East, and we are excited about our first foray into an entirely new market as we look beyond Asia Pacific," group chief executive officer Kamarudin Meranun said in the statement.

The announcement comes a day after Emirates Airline, the world's largest long-haul carrier, said it would add a US route. A US airline lobby group said that move amounted to unfair competition because Gulf carriers received government subsidies. Gulf carriers deny receiving subsidies.