>  Blog!   >  AirAsia Review: AK6303 Langkawi to Kuala Lumpur
AK6303 AirAsia

For our return from Koh Lipe, the timing – and my lapsed Executive Club status – meant that Malaysia Airlines made no sense, and so it seemed high time for an AirAsia review, on this short hop from Langkawi to Kuala Lumpur.

Like a good economy passenger, I plumped for nothing extra other than front row seats, and checked luggage.

In my experience, AirAsia is one of the ‘less nasty’ ultra low-cost carriers globally; tacky, but not quite as bad say, Ryanair; extra charge-minded, but not quite as bad as say, Spirit or Frontier.

Langkawi Airport has had a mild renovation, if you can call it that, in the landside shopping areas to the front, but remains otherwise a very compact airport that one should definitely not arrive too early to experience. Unfortunately, we didn’t actually follow our own advice there and spent the guts of an hour wandering the one long corridor out front, back and forth between Costa Coffee and the food village down the far end. To be avoided.

Check-in, because of Langkawi’s duty free status, involves passing through a customs check and luggage x-ray upfront, before reaching the counters.

AirAsia has, very thoughtfully, installed multiple self-service baggage weight/labelling machines, along with several self-service check-in counters to send your luggage on its way – unfortunately, for whatever reason, nobody else at the check-in area seemed to have decided to try to use one, so we were the ultimate benefactors, skipping a queue of around 15 people for the one, lone, manual check-in agent.

Langkawi Airport

The departures hall of Langkawi Airport, at least on the domestic side, is absolutely nothing to get excited about – there’s toilets, lots of seating, some nice views over the apron, and a way to order KFC from outside. That about sums it up.

Langkawi Airport - Boarding

Thankfully, at this stage, there wasn’t long to go and before long we were boarding – in this case, by walking out onto the apron and along the side of the building to our plane, giving us great views of our steed as we got closer.

AirAsia A320 at Langkawi

If there was nothing to get excited about in Langkawi Airport, there’s even less to get excited about on board this typical all-economy AirAsia A320. Legroom in row 1 is very generous, and I had more than enough space to stretch out during the short 1-hour jaunt.

AirAsia A320 Row 1 Legroom

Meanwhile, although Malaysians don’t seem as compelled to bring the kitchen sink on in their hand luggage as in Europe and especially the US, those in row 1 would still do well to board as quickly as possible to make sure hand luggage doesn’t have to be stored a few rows back – always awkward.

Before long we were on our way – 10 minutes early, in fact, with a very short taxi time to take-off out over the sea.

There was just enough time for meal pre-orders to be dispensed with before a very quick service for anyone else; not that it was of any interest to ourselves after, I will admit, having a cheap dinner at the food village back at Langkawi Airport that I made fun of earlier.

AirAsia pushback at Langkawi Airport

One drawback, as always, of AirAsia is actually not really their fault, but it’s their home at KLIA2 (now laughably known as KLIA Terminal 2, as if it was of equal quality and standard as the original KLIA Terminal 1, which it absolutely isn’t), which is ridiculously large with seemingly multiple level changes for any journey through the airport, very barebones, and clearly designed primarily for commercial opportunities than passenger experience.

We used the KLIA Ekspres train to get into town, and as always, this station too was seemingly a victim of the ‘low cost’ nature of the airport build, with the station platforms stuck outside in the tropical heat – not a good combination with luggage to be lugged on and off the trains.

KLIA Ekspres station at KLIA2

Overall, as I’ve said about trips with AirAsia before, a perfectly pleasant if unremarkable journey – made worse only by their home airport and its prioritisation of passengers and airline operations as a second thought. AirAsia, in spite of their ultra-low cost nature, do a good job with what is generally a degree more decency than most other global competitors of the same nature.

Reformed backpacker & former ultra-cheap traveller, Andy now atones for his past by overspending on premium travel experiences and failing at making the most of the miles & points game. Former expat now returned to Ireland, he is a product manager by day, and travel aficionado by evening and weekend.

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