Malaysia Airlines celebrates 20 years in Auckland

07 December 2009

On 7 December 1989 the inaugural Malaysia Airlines flight took off from Auckland Airport bound for Kuala Lumpur. The weekly service commenced with a DC-10 aircraft.

Since that date, more than two million passengers have now travelled with Malaysia Airlines from Auckland Airport, connecting to over 100 destinations worldwide across six continents.

In 2000 Malaysia Airlines operated a daily B777-200 service to Auckland. Today this service operates five times a week, with Malaysia Airlines being the only carrier offering a direct service to Malaysia.

Auckland Airport’s chief executive, Simon Moutter, said, “We are thrilled to celebrate this milestone in the long-standing partnership we have with Malaysia Airlines. When Malaysia Airlines first decided to fly to Auckland in 1989, it was one of the first new airlines to fly here since the airport was corporatized in 1988. This long-term commitment to Auckland Airport has been vital in our ongoing development into one of the 10 best airports in the world. Any success we have had is because of the willingness of airlines like Malaysia to commit to a long-term vision to help grow the New Zealand market”.

Malaysia Airlines Area Manager NZ & SWP, Halid Alpi said: “Malaysia Airlines receives excellent cooperation from Auckland Airport and continues to work closely with the Airport in helping to grow the New Zealand market. The Free Trade Agreement signed recently on 26 October 2009 in Kuala Lumpur will see the continuation of growth in terms of passengers and trade between Malaysia and New Zealand. We look forward to another successful 20 years in partnership with Auckland International Airport.”

Malaysia Airlines first joined forces with Auckland Airport during a time of enormous change. In 1989 Auckland was in the middle of hectic preparations for the 1990 Commonwealth Games, including major terminal renovations at the airport. In a sign of developing travel trends, the first duty-free arrivals shop in New Zealand had just opened at Auckland Airport. On a global scale momentous events were happening with the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the imminent release from prison of Nelson Mandela.

Since those times, the partnership between Malaysia Airlines and Auckland Airport has continued to flourish, with consistent growth in passengers.


For further information, please contact:

Richard Llewellyn
Senior communications manager
Auckland Airport
+64 (0) 9 255 9089
+64 (0) 27 477 6120

About Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia Airlines holds a lengthy record of service and best practices excellence, and is also one of only six airlines worldwide to be accredited a “5-Star Airline” by Skytrax, an accomplishment it has achieved for 4 consecutive years, 2005-2009. It has also received the accolade of “World’s Best Cabin Staff” by Skytrax over 6 years, 2001-2004, 2007 and 2009.

About Auckland Airport

Auckland Airport - World Airport Award Winner 2009
Auckland Airport has been voted the 10th best in the world and the best airport in the Australia Pacific region, in the 2009 independent Skytrax World Airport awards. The World Airport Survey is conducted by UK-based aviation research organisation, Skytrax. The survey is completed by approximately 8.2 million travellers from more than 190 airports around the world. The questionnaire asks travellers to evaluate their experiences across 39 different airport service and product factors - from check-in, arrivals, transfer through to departure at the gate.