AirAsia Economy Class A320-200

In This Series:

  1. Introduction
  2. Japan Airlines Business Class 787-8 Seattle to Tokyo-Narita
  3. Japan Airlines Business Class 767-300 Tokyo-Narita to Jakarta
  4. AirAsia Economy Class A320-200 Jakarta to Denpasar, Denpasar to Jakarta, Jakarta to Singapore
  5. Beaches and Temples: What we did in Bali
  6. Hyatt Regency Bali
  7. Andaz Singapore
  8. 48 hours in Singapore
  9. Cathay Pacific Business Class A330-300 Singapore to Hong Kong
  10. Cathay Pacific Business Class A350-900 Hong Kong to Seattle

Founded in 1993 in Malaysia, AirAsia is a conglomerate of low-cost carriers that currently has subsidiaries operating as separate entities throughout Southeast Asia. Luckily, the reservation system is centralized throughout the whole AirAsia network regardless on the operating carrier. The planes hard and soft products are also well-integrated and uniformed across all subsidiaries. Aside from the language spoken by the crew, many passengers are likely unable to tell that they are on a flight operated by Malaysia VS Indonesia AirAsia.

Despite of being a well-known tourist destination, Bali does not have as extensive of flight offerings as Jakarta. For instance, Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon only operates a combination of 9 flights per week to Denpasar (one daily flight on CX and twice a week flight on KA). JAL and ANA do not even serve this market — which is surprising considering the number of Japanese tourists visiting Bali each year, but I digress. Due to the aforementioned reason, I have decided to connect to AirAsia flight from Jakarta to Bali, and again from Bali to Singapore via Jakarta on the return. Given the similarities across all of my segments on AirAsia, I have decided to ‘lump’ all the reviews into one report.

Flight Number: QZ7510
Route: Jakarta (CGK) — Denpasar (DPS)
Schedule: 05:10 – 08:05
Duration: 1h 35m
Aircraft Type: Airbus A320-200 (Registration: PK-AZF)
Cabin: Economy Class
Seat: 14B / Exit Row (“Hot Seat”)
Date: August 25, 2019

After a few hours roaming around Jakarta, we took a taxi back to the airport. The fare was not more than IDR 170,000 and at 3 o’clock in the morning, there was very little traffic in the area.

AirAsia occupies Terminal 2E for its domestic flights and Terminal 2F for its international flights at Soekarno-Hatta. As with the norms in many Asian airports, there was a security check to get into the check-in hall, and another toward the boarding gates. We stopped by briefly for a bathroom break at the Saphire Lounge en route to the gate. The lounge was acceptable but not particularly memorable.

Boarding was done through the jetbridge, which was appreciated. There was a different flight, bound for Surabaya, departing from the same gate. The attendant at the gate directed us to the holding room to the left. As hot seats passengers, we received priority boarding, and were among the first to board the aircraft.

Upon reaching the exit rows, we promptly sat down and got settled. The legroom on the exit row was generous, for a low cost carrier’s standard. The overhead bins were emblazoned with ads, and the headrests were covered with red cases with advertising on them as well. Taxi to the runway was short, and before we knew it, we rocketed eastward towards the island of Gods.

At cruising altitude, the crew sprung to action. Carts were rolled out to distribute pre-ordered hot meals, followed by snacks/beverages and merchandise sales. I had pre-ordered Nasi Padang and Nasi Lemak for ourselves, which was surprisingly quite tasty and reasonably priced at no more than US$2 per meal.

During descent, the captain announced that we were approaching Bali and that he had a special announcement. Apparently a fellow passenger one row behind us was celebrating her birthday. The crew and other passengers sang and wished them happy birthday and brought her a birthday cake, which was a delightful surprise to everyone, us included. The birthday girl had her pictures taken with the crew and the rest of the flight until touch down was relatively uneventful. We reached the gate 20 minutes early and our luggage was offloaded to the baggage claim shortly thereafter.

Flight Number: QZ7511
Route: Denpasar (DPS) – Jakarta (CGK)
Schedule: 08:30 – 09:20
Duration: 1h 50m
Aircraft Type: Airbus A320-200 (Registration: PK-AXV)
Cabin: Economy Class
Seat: 7A
Date: August 31, 2019

Flight Number: QZ264
Route: Jakarta (CGK) — Singapore (SIN)
Schedule: 11:00 – 14:00
Duration: 2h 00m
Aircraft Type: Airbus A320-200 (Registration: PK-AZF)
Cabin: Economy Class
Seat: 1B / Bulkhead (“Hot Seat”)
Date: August 31, 2019

The return flight was a little bit interesting in terms of the routing. Instead of booking a direct flight from Denpasar to Singapore, we booked DPS-CGK-SIN instead on two separate bookings, leaving an approximately 1h40m to connect between flights.

Unfortunately, AirAsia does not provide a through check-in in cases of passengers in a predicament like ourselves. We had to claim our bags at CGK and recheck them to our SIN flight. Luckily, as noted above, the airline operates at both Terminal 2E and 2F at Soekarno-Hatta, which is located next to each other. Our flight from Denpasar landed slightly early and we were able to recheck our bags without much difficulty.

The rest of the flights went rather uneventful and could not have been more similar to our first flight on AirAsia to Bali, so I would not review them again to avoid redundancy. While it is a no-frills airline, AirAsia provides an easy and cheap way to get around Southeast Asia. I did not encounter any issue on this trip despite of the rather unconventional itinerary (according to the staff).

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