Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Firefly makes maiden Ipoh-S'pore flight

Sultan Azlan Shah airport was a hive of activity when Firefly's ATR 72-500 flew in from Singapore yesterday.
The flight marked the airline's first flight between Ipoh and the island republic.

The flight from the republic, with 57 passengers on board, landed at the airport at 4.45pm to a welcoming ceremony which included traditional dances and a band from Sekolah Menengah Anderson Ipoh.

They were also screened for influenza A H1N1 by a medical team before they were allowed into the arrival hall.

They were received by state Industry, Investment, Entreprenuer Development, ICT, Tourism and Women Affairs committee chairman Datuk Hamidah Osman who represented Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir.

They were garlanded and given state tourism goodie bags.

Hamidah later launched the flight from Ipoh to Singapore with 71 passengers, including 21 Perak media representatives, which took off at 5.20pm. The delegation was led by state Health, Local Government, Consumer Affairs, Environment, Public Transport and Non-Islamic Affairs Committee chairman Datuk Mah Hang Soon.

In her speech, Hamidah said the air link was expected to "open up opportunities in the tourism and industrial sectors which would eventually contribute to the growth of the economy of the state".

Firefly operates four flights a week to Singapore.

The airport was previously used by Riau Airlines for its Medan-Ipoh service, with the last flight in March.

It is currently used by a flying academy for training purposes.

AirAsia operated the Ipoh-Senai route for nine months before it suspended the service in September 2006.

Firefly managing director Eddy Leong, who was present at the event, said the airline might increase the frequencies if there were demand for it.

The airline was also talking to travel agents to reopen the Ipoh-Medan routes.

Source : NST
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