Sabah welcomes Firefly maiden flight Penang-Kota Kinabalu
KOTA KINABALU: Firefly celebrated the commencement of its inaugural flight from Penang to Kota Kinabalu on Monday, carrying 85 passengers on board.
Passengers arriving on a Boeing 737-800 aircraft were greeted with a water canon salute as the plane touched down at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport at 5.10pm.
Sabah Tourism, Culture, and Environment Minister Datuk Jafry Ariffin and his Assistant Minister cum Sabah Tourism Board Datuk Joniston Bangkuai were present to welcome the passengers.
They were accompanied by the state’s tourism ministry permanent secretary Datuk Mohd Yusrie Abdullah @ Yantis Goduan; Sabah Tourism Board chief executive officer Noredah Othman; Malaysia Airport Berhad (Sabah) acting senior general manager Kamaruzzaman Razali; MASWing chief operational officer Captain Nasaruddin A. Bakar; and Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board deputy chairman Datuk Seri Dr. Anil Jeet Singh Sandhu.
According to Jafry, the launch of Firefly’s new Penang-Kota Kinabalu route is expected to result in an increase in tourist arrivals to Sabah, especially since Penang is close to Langkawi, which receives international flights.
“The state government thanks Firefly for choosing Kota Kinabalu as its destination route. I hope that cooperation between the state government and Firefly will be strengthened further to boost the state’s tourism industry.
“This Firefly route has unquestionably made Sabah more accessible to Malaysians and visitors alike. As such, I invite everyone to visit Sabah and immerse themselves in the state’s numerous fascinating attractions and culture,” he said.
Jafry added his Ministry is committed to working with all airlines in the country and welcoming more direct flights to Sabah in the future.
Meanwhile, Nasaruddin stated that Firefly will operate one daily flight between Penang-Kota Kinabalu and Kota Kinabalu-Penang until April 24.
From April 25 onwards, the airline will operate two flights per day on each route.
“The response has been very promising and encouraging, especially during the festival and holiday seasons. The Penang-Kota Kinabalu route is currently priced at RM119 until April 27.
“Pricing will change depending on supply and demand, so we encourage passengers to book their flight early and keep browsing for the best deal,” he said.
Firefly is under the Malaysia Aviation Group, which includes Malaysia Airlines and MASwings.