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MELAKA: Syarikat Penerbangan Melaka Air (Melaka Air) today performed the inaugural flight from the Melaka International Airport in Batu Berendam to Medan on a ATR 72-500 aircraft.
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam, who launched the flight, said Melaka Air aims to fly 25,000 passengers in the first operational year to boost the usage of the newly-renovated Melaka International Airport.
He said Melaka Air has been given five months till March next year to gauge public response for the flight.
"From there, we'll decide whether to continue the flight," he told reporters when launching the inaugural flight.
He performed the flight gimmick at 11.11am sharp to mark today's auspicious date -- 11.11.2011.
The flight, passing through Subang and Penang, flew domestic tourists in the package to visit Medan, Indonesia's third biggest city. They will return on Sunday.
From Nov 21, Melaka Air will fly twice weekly, on every Mondays and Fridays, to Subang and Medan. The one-way fare is RM60 to Subang and RM250 to Medan.
"If public response is encouraging, the flight will be expanded to Bandung, Palembang and Batam and to Penang and Kota Baharu.
"We also aim to fly to major destinations in Asean countries," Mohd Ali said.
The chief minister also said Melaka Air would acquire Puteri Holidays Sdn Bhd, to be known as Melaka Holidays Sdn Bhd, to woo more tourists to Melaka via air.
He said flights on Melaka Air can be booked online at www.fireflyz.com or www.yayasanmelaka.gov.my
Since the Melaka International Airport was refurbished and upgraded in February last year, only "Wings Air" was operating thrice weekly flights on the Pekan Baru-Melaka sector. -- BERNAMA