As Malaysia gears up to welcome 30 million foreign tourists for Visit Malaysia 2020 (VM2020), AirAsia is urging airport operator Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) to urgently address the worsening congestion at klia2 immigration counters.
AirAsia Malaysia CEO Riad Asmat and AirAsia X Malaysia CEO Benyamin Ismail said, “The congestion caused by long queues at immigration counters for foreign passports at klia2 is a daily occurrence. It has gotten so bad that countless guests have complained to us about missing their connecting flights as well as important meetings and appointments.
“The airport is the first encounter visitors have with Malaysia, and it is shameful that their first experience of our country is one that showcases inefficiency and poor customer service, particularly with VM2020 just around the corner.”
In some cases, guests have had to queue for over an hour at immigration, especially during peak hours between 3.00am to 7.00am, 2.00pm to 7.00pm and 9.00pm to midnight.
“The problem is caused by the poor design and flawed configuration of klia2. We have raised this issue with MAHB and were given an assurance that adjustments would be made to extend immigration clearance into the area presently occupied by the duty-free outlets. However, up to now we have not seen anything done to address the problem and congestion has worsened daily, with some passengers having to endure long queues that stretch all the way back to the disembarkation gates,” said Riad and Benyamin.
“The Immigration Department has been very understanding and helpful, ensuring all counters are opened during peak periods. Aside from that, there’s nothing much further they can do as the floor space and configuration at klia2, including the ability to add more counters and extend the queuing area falls under MAHB’s responsibility.
“As a regulator and aviation consumer protection body, the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) must step in to ensure this issue is quickly resolved.”