Tony Fernandes tackles refunds head on: Air Asia committed to pay back 450,000 unpaid customers

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes is not like your typical airline owner and CEO who have avoided answering the number one concern of consumers since the pandemic grounded air travel in arch 2020: ticket refunds.

Fernandez assured all of Air Asia’s customers would be refunded no matter the difficulties by the airline and its staff.

“I’m gonna say it as it is: the reality is Air Asia hasn’t flown for a year. We haven’t had any financial support of any kind like a lot of government airlines. Since January, we paid back 1.5 million refunds. I want to thank 2.9 million people who have said they would take their refund in the form of a credit shell,” said Fernandes in a no-frills video message posted on Facebook.

“We have 450,000 people still to pay back and we’re going to pay back. Every week, we are still clearing with whatever little cash we have. And we’ll get there, for sure. What we want is to pay everyone back a refund or give them a credit shell and ensure AirAsia survives,” Fernandes added.

He said AirAsia has 245 grounded planes and laid off 10 percent of its workforce with the remaining 22,000 employees retained on less pay. He said he would “make sure to hire back the over 2,000 staff we’ve had to let go.”

“Covid-19 is not our fault, we are not bad people. It has obviously affected us badly like many other airlines but we are still trying to do our best to keep as many of our staff,” said Fernandes.

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