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AirAsia X, first Airline in Asia to Introduce Innovative Empty Seat Option


Singapore, 9 February 2012

From January 2012, AirAsia X and its technology partner, Optiontown, have introduced an innovative new service, called ‘Empty Seat Option (ESo)’, available on Optiontown.com. AirAsia X is the first airline in Asia Pacific to offer its guests travelling in Economy, an option which provides a chance to get all three seats in a row for a nominal fee.

Empty Seat Option (ESo) is AirAsia X’s second successful ancillary offering introduced in partnership with Optiontown after the success of its Upgrade Travel Option (UTo) service, launched in 2011.

The UTo provides AirAsia X’s guests the opportunity to upgrade to AirAsia X’s Premium Flatbed seats. The UTo has helped to significantly increase AirAsia X's premium class load factor (by over 22%) and upgrade yield (by over 60%). Options are limited by flight to ensure a reasonable probability of successful upgrades. Each option is dynamically priced.

AirAsia X CEO, Azran Osman-Rani said, “AirAsia X has revolutionized air travel in many ways and we are constantly on the lookout for current innovative trend to ensure that our guests’ comfort are looked after when onboard our flights.

“We offer them the option to purchase only what is required depending on individual needs rather than bundling the cost to our fare offerings. This way, guests are able to enjoy continuous low fares from the airline. Feedback from passengers have been resoundingly positive as this service provides a clear comfort value for our passengers, and we’re delighted to expand our product offering to include ESo now, and other flexibility options in the near future.”

He adds, “AirAsia X remains focused on maintaining its global leadership position in the low cost, long-haul segment. The airline is constantly looking for ways to boost customer satisfaction and enhance their flying experience with us. I believe that the Empty Seat Option (ESo) will be a great addition to our family of ancillary products which will further increase our ancillary revenue stream. We estimate that we could earn up to US$1 million in 2012,” concluded Azran.

Optiontown Founder & CEO, Sachin Goel stated, “Our team is excited to bring this innovation to the guest of AirAsia X, which is sharing our philosophy of pioneering dynamic travel options. Our patented core technology ‘OptiMYzer TM’ allows us to creatively bring more utility to the guest of our airline partner AirAsia X’. The technology has still more options in store that we plan to launch in the near future.”

To add on the Empty Seat Option (ESo) to your booking, guests are invited to

1. Log on to www.airasia.com and select Upgrade with Optiontown under the Flight Information section 
2. Click on Optiontown and select Empty Seat Option (ESo)
3. Enter the current flight booking number and select flight for ESo
4. Pay a small sign up fee (MYR3) and a nominal Empty Seat(s) fee
5. Empty Seat(s) availability status will be emailed (72-4hrs) to the customer before flight departure
6. If Empty Seat(s) are not assigned due to unavailability, Empty Seat fee will be refunded automatically to the customer.
  (Options for each flight are limited in quantity to ensure a reasonable probability of successful upgrade.) 

AirAsia X is one of the 10 airlines collaborating with Optiontown, an innovative airline service provider headquartered in Massachusetts, USA with branch offices in India and Europe.

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