An Exclusive Interview with Riad Asmat on AirAsia’s New Route

Hot new destination alert! AirAsia now flies to Kuantan, Pahang!

Beginning 28 October 2018, AirAsia will commence daily flights from Malaysia’s capital city Kuala Lumpur to Kuantan, the state capital of Pahang.
caught up with AirAsia Malaysia CEO Riad Asmat to celebrate the occasion. Riad, an avid cyclist who enjoys spending time outdoors and savouring local delicacies, shared his excitement in launching this new route.

“We are now expanding aggressively in Asean and beyond, so it makes sense to also connect to all capital cities in our home country. Furthermore, the Kuala Lumpur-Kuantan route marks our service to and from all major airports in Malaysia. We believe the direct flight will benefit the east coast region as a whole, as the city is ideally situated near Terengganu and Kelantan. By connecting our guests to Kuantan, they have the option to also explore the region thus strengthening the three states’ tourism and economic sector. Additionally, guests from Kuantan will now have more options with low fares to fly to Kuala Lumpur and connect to our extensive network of over 130 destinations via klia2.”

He added, “Kuantan is not merely a domestic route as we are also well-connected globally. With this new route launch, Kuantan is now on the international travel map as guests from other countries are able to come here via our Fly-thru service.”

Being the CEO of the World’s Best Low-Cost Airline is no walk in the park. But even though he is always busy with work and meetings, Riad himself is looking forward to a holiday in Kuantan.

“As an outdoorsy person, Kuantan is definitely right up my alley, which I hope to visit again! I can cycle through Teluk Cempedak and stroll along the beach in the evening, enjoy the waterfalls at Sungai Pandan, go for a sunrise hike at Bukit Panorama and more! Also, no visit to Pahang is complete without a food trail to all the delicious fares such as
puding raja
(local dessert made with bananas, milk and nuts),
ikan bakar
(grilled fish),
(grilled fish cake) and curry mee!” Riad enthused.

One of Riad’s favourite dishes in Kuantan is the famous baked crabs at Tong Juan Restaurant. He loves it so much he would get any of his friends that go to Kuantan to bring some back to Kuala Lumpur, adding that he doesn’t mind waiting up to four hours for his friends to return, with the delicious dish tucked away in a takeaway container. Surely with this new route launch, it will be easier for him to savour this exquisite Kuantan specialty!

There is certainly no shortage of fun things to do in Kuantan. Complementing the booming food scene are the quaint cafes and hangout spots – just perfect for a family weekend. Pahang’s beautiful natural attractions are not to be missed as well. Located within the city is Teluk Cempedak, a popular weekend spot for locals to unwind. Meanwhile just less than an hour away by road, Cherating is known for its wonderful resorts, batik-painting classes by the beach, as well as dramatic waves – great for surfing. Other places to explore within the state include Taman Negara, Sungai Pandan Waterfall and the Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary.

With already 16 cities including Kuala Lumpur, Johor Bahru, Kota Bharu, Kuala Terengganu, Langkawi, Alor Setar, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Tawau, Labuan, Bintulu, Sibu, Miri, Sandakan, Ipoh and Penang, AirAsia continues to strengthen its Malaysian domestic network with this new destination.

To celebrate the launch, a special introductory all-in fare starting from as low as RM16 is available for booking from 15 to 26 August 2018 for the travel period from 28 October 2018 to 13 August 2019. For more info and to grab the low fares, visit


Route Flight Departure Arrival Frequency
Kuala Lumpur-Kuantan AK6230 07:05 07:55 Daily
Kuantan-Kuala Lumpur AK6231 08:20 09:30 Daily

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