Ismail Sabri: Domestic flights only half-load with social distancing in place

On Wednesday (April 29), low-cost carrier AirAsia Group Berhad resumed its scheduled domestic flights, followed by flights to Thailand on Thursday, to Indonesia on next Thursday (May 7) and to the Philippines on May 16. — Reuters pic
On Wednesday (April 29), low-cost carrier AirAsia Group Berhad resumed its scheduled domestic flights, followed by flights to Thailand on Thursday, to Indonesia on next Thursday (May 7) and to the Philippines on May 16. — Reuters pic

PUTRAJAYA, May 2 — The National Security Council has decided the resumption of domestic flights in the country must follow the standard operating procedure (SOP) of allowing only half-load flights, said Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

He said, as an example, if an aircraft can accommodate up to 100 passengers, then only 50 will be allowed to board the flight.

“The seating will be similar to that of buses, whereby one person can only occupy two seats due to social distancing. To my knowledge, flights to and from Sabah and Sarawak are still being done by Firefly at the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Subang,” Ismail Sabri said during his daily press conference in Putrajaya.

The minister added that airline operators will also require police permission before conducting domestic flights.

On Wednesday (April 29), low-cost carrier AirAsia Group Berhad resumed its scheduled domestic flights, followed by flights to Thailand on Thursday, to Indonesia on next Thursday (May 7) and to the Philippines on May 16.

The group's executive chairman Datuk Kamarudin Meranun said the resumption will start with key select domestic routes, and gradually increased to include regional destinations once things have improved and Asean governments decided to reopen their borders and lift travel restrictions.

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