Ben Mutzabaugh , USA TODAY
Asian budget carrier AirAsia X announced its first-ever route to the United States on Friday.
The airline – the long-haul unit of Malaysian low-cost carrier AirAsia – will begin flying from Honolulu on June 28. AirAsia X will fly non-stop from Honolulu to Osaka/Kansai, Japan, with continuing service to its main hub in Kuala Lumpur. Passengers traveling between Honolulu and Kuala Lumpur will have a stopover in Osaka of about two hours.
Introductory fares on the new route were on sale for as little as $99 one way to Japan and $149 to Malaysia, though regular fares will be higher.
AirAsia X’s Honolulu-Oaska-Kuala Lumpur service will operate four times a week on 377-seat Airbus A330-300 widebody jets. The planes include 12 lie-flat seats and 365 economy seats. Fares for the flatbed seats begin at $699 one way during the introductory period, though typical fares will be higher.
The carrier’s first route to America comes little more than two weeks after the company revealed it had gained approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to begin U.S. flights.
“This is the game-changing route we have all been waiting for,” Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, AirAsia X CEO, said in a statement. “We thank all relevant authorities and governments for their support. Their vote of confidence made today’s unique route launch possible and we will continue to work closely with all parties to ensure we can connect more people through this flagship intercontinental route.”