Malaysia Airlines resumes services between Kota Kinabalu and Taipei

 Tuesday, December 6, 2022 


Malaysia Airlines today resumed its direct services on the Taipei-Kota Kinabalu route effective 5 December 2022.

This move comes after Taipei recently reopened its borders to international travellers and lifted its mandatory COVID-19 quarantine restrictions for arrivals.

Flight MH069 which arrived Kota Kinabalu International Airport (BKI) from Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) at 8.00pm local time was commemorated with a welcome ceremony including water salute to celebrate the passengers.

The senior managements from Malaysia Airlines. Berhad (MAB), Sabah Tourism Board (STB) and Malaysia Airports Berhad (MAHB) were also present.

According to Malaysia Airlines’ Group Chief Executive Officer, Captain Izham Ismail said that they are delighted to resume our services to Taipei with twice-weekly direct flights from Kota Kinabalu in addition to seven flights weekly from Kuala Lumpur.

This demonstrates the airline’s commitment to facilitating the market’s travel and tourism recovery, as well as driving inbound traffic to ensure that the travel and airlines industry recovers stronger than ever in the post-pandemic era.

They believe that their continued collaboration with the Sabah Tourism Board will position Sabah as a preferred holiday destination and strategic transit point for travellers connecting seamlessly to and within the Land Below the Wind, as well as from Kota Kinabalu to neighbouring states via sister airlines Firefly and MASwings.

In August this year Malaysia Airlines also began direct services between Kota Kinabalu and Singapore.

They restored the majority of their pre-pandemic domestic market capacity across all MAG airlines, and they expect to end the year with 82% capacity of pre-pandemic level.

With the reinstatement of Taipei, the total international direct air connectivity to Sabah has increased to six (6) cities around Asia after Incheon (South Korea), Singapore, Manila (the Philippines), Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei) and Bangkok (Thailand).

Pre-Covid, Sabah was connected to 20 cities in the Asia Pacific region from countries like China, Brunei, the Philippines, Japan, Australia, Singapore, South Korea, Indonesia and Taiwan through scheduled direct flights.

Sabah has regained one third of its international direct air link in the span of April to December 2022. This is a good indication of recovery for the tourism industry in Sabah.

Air accessibility is important to Sabah as 90% of travellers come to Sabah by air.

Hence, STB is continuously working closely with airlines operators to regain and create new international connectivity to not only Kota Kinabalu, but also other major airports in Sabah.

For this, they congratulate Malaysia Airlines for reinstating the Taipei-Kota Kinabalu route said Puan Noredah Othman, the CEO of Sabah Tourism Board.

Puan Noredah also added that, bird watching has a big following in Taiwan. The connectivity will surely create more choices for the birding community there to consider Sabah, as they are only 3.5 hrs. away from Taiwan.

With a total of 688 resident and migratory birds and 15 Important Birding Areas, they believe Sabah can offer the best experience for the bird watching enthusiast.

Other potential segments for STB to tap into for this market includes diving and hiking.

The airline will operate the twice weekly direct flights starting from 5 December 2022 which will depart from BKI-TPE via MH068 and depart TPE-BKI via MH069.

The flights will be operated by B737-800 aircraft, equipped with 160 seats, comprising 16 seats in Business Class and 144 seats in Economy Class.

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