(Updated February 19, 2021)
Even though bans have been eased in many countries, airlines around the world are still having problems.
This has led many airlines to innovate and turn to different business models. For example, Singapore Airlines started restaurant service on its planes and ran behind-the-scenes tours at its training facility.
Like many airlines, the low-cost airline AirAsia ventured into a new industry with AirAsia Food – the delivery of food.
Sabrina Khaw, head of AirAsia Food, told The Straits Times that the airline switched to food delivery after discovering that Malaysia had food delivery platforms charging "exorbitant commission rates".
AirAsia groceries operate on a zero-commission model, and merchants can choose from flat-rate plans that allow for payment and delivery.
The Malaysia-based airline officially started operating AirAsia Food in May 2020. According to the airline, it had served 500 restaurants and delivered nearly 15,000 orders within three months of its operation.
Now the delivery service plans to start operations in Singapore and will start next month.
Entry into Singapore's Crowded Food Delivery Industry
Tony Fernandes, Managing Director of AirAsia / Image Credit: The Star
On Wednesday (February 17), AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes announced on LinkedIn that AirAsia groceries would come to Singapore "with a roar".
Although AirAsia Food started in Malaysia almost a year ago, Singapore will be its first overseas foray.
This means it would have to compete with giants like Foodpanda, Deliveroo and GrabFood, as well as smaller players like WhyQ and Pickupp.
Despite the foreseeable challenges, Tony said he was confident that AirAsia food would do well in Singapore.
“It took me seven years to get permission to fly to Singapore, but better late than never. So I would say we are way ahead of the food schedule. I am sure we will be very welcome, ”he told The Straits Times.
He also mentioned that interested dealers can now sign up for AirAsia via email.
"As a disruptive market leader, we are ready to face the new challenge in Singapore and bring value, simplicity and inclusivity to everyone," he said.
Selected image source: Lowyat