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Amadeus boosts AirAsia's global expansion

Amadeus announced that it has formed a groundbreaking partnership with AirAsia, the World's Best Low Cost Airline , which for the first time will enable Amadeus-subscribing travel agencies worldwide to book AirAsia flights in the same way they would for a full-service carrier. More than 102,200 travel agencies worldwide using the Amadeus Global Distribution System (GDS) for reservations will now be able to book flights for travellers on AirAsia and all its subsidiaries - Indonesia AirAsia, Thai AirAsia and its long-haul low-fare affiliate, AirAsia X. This has been achieved through the implementation of a unique Amadeus technology solution for low-cost 'ticketless' airlines, named Amadeus Ticketless Access. This technology enables travel agents to find flight options to suit a broader range of needs, especially for travellers who are particularly budget-conscious.

Madrid, Spain, September 10, 2009: Amadeus, a global leader in technology and distribution solutions for the travel and tourism industry today, announced that it has formed a groundbreaking partnership with AirAsia, the World’s Best Low Cost Airline , which for the first time will enable Amadeus-subscribing travel agencies worldwide to book AirAsia flights in the same way they would for a full-service carrier. More than 102,200 travel agencies worldwide using the Amadeus Global Distribution System (GDS) for reservations will now be able to book flights for travellers on AirAsia and all its subsidiaries – Indonesia AirAsia, Thai AirAsia and its long-haul low-fare affiliate, AirAsia X. This has been achieved through the implementation of a unique Amadeus technology solution for low-cost ‘ticketless’ airlines, named Amadeus Ticketless Access. This technology enables travel agents to find flight options to suit a broader range of needs, especially for travellers who are particularly budget-conscious. Kathleen Tan, Regional Head of Commercial, AirAsia Group said, “AirAsia is already an established leader in Asia Pacific’s aviation industry evolving to be a global brand player. Our growth strategy is to aggressively expand AirAsia footprint globally through a broader channel distribution, making our amazing low fares inventory more accessible. This collaboration with Amadeus will enable us to tap into a broader mix of new market segment of international customers to complement our commercial strategy, especially for AirAsia X as we make long haul travel more affordable. Since the implementation of this agreement, we have seen positive interest from overseas markets, in particular Europe. Ultimately, we hope the new segment offered through Amadeus will help us to serve a new market segment through the travel community to complement our channel marketing strategy and support our continued expansion plans worldwide.” Amadeus’ Ticketless Access is a breakthrough solution that allows real-time fare and flight information from the Low Cost Carrier (LCC) to be displayed alongside that of full-service airlines, on a travel agent’s Amadeus screen. Developed by Amadeus in response to market demand from LCCs, travellers and travel agents, this solution helps LCCs to target new customer segments (such as corporate travel and sales in global markets), while travel agents are able to offer their customers better service and a wider range of flight options. Amadeus is already receiving positive feedback from travel agents who are finding it very easy to make bookings, since the display is the same as the traditional process of booking any other airline. David Brett, President, Amadeus Asia Pacific, said, “This is an important milestone not only for AirAsia, but also for the Asia Pacific travel industry as a whole. Amadeus is very proud to be pioneering this solution in Asia Pacific with AirAsia, and we hope its success will support their growth and rapid expansion globally. Amadeus’ technology can support this revolutionary change, bringing more flight options to travel agency customers and giving AirAsia’s existing passengers more flexibility and choice in the way they book and pay for tickets. This may be of particular interest to business travellers who are looking for more economical options, especially during today’s economic climate.” Kathleen Tan, Regional Head of Commercial, AirAsia Group further comments, “The advent of today’s technology and rising awareness of LCC is shaping consumers’ behaviour and buying habits. The global economic downturn creates opportunities for AirAsia as demand for affordable low fares intensifies amongst budget-conscious travellers, especially from leisure and corporate travellers. With a massive network AirAsia has built across Asean, China, Australia, Middle East and Australia, with eight hubs in Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu, Johor, Penang, Bali, Jakarta, Bandung, Bangkok and soon Phuket and Surabaya, the travel options on AirAsia are incredibly exciting and dynamic. By enabling bookings through Amadeus travel agencies, we are opening access to the AirAsia family via a rich new global platform. We believe this initiative will integrate an important component of our global development plan and expansion strategy.” AirAsia was founded in 2001 and has grown to become Asia’s largest and most successful LCC airline. Recognised as the World’s Best Low Cost Airline by Skytrax this year, the carrier flies to over 70 domestic and international destinations with over 130 routes, and operates over 400 flights daily from hubs located in Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. ### Notes to the editors: About AirAsia AirAsia, the leading and largest low-cost carrier in Asia, services the most extensive network with 130 routes covering more than 70 destinations. Within the grasp of 7 years of operation, AirAsia has carried over 70 million passengers and grown its fleet from just two aircraft to 83. The airline today is proud to be a truly Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) airline with established operations based in Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand, servicing a network stretching across all Asean countries, China, India and Bangladesh. This is further complemented by AirAsia X, its low cost long-haul affiliate carrier that currently flies to destinations in Northern China, Australia, the UK and now the Middle East. AirAsia is the only regional carrier with the largest destination network and highest flight frequencies. AirAsia has been awarded the 2009 World’s Best Low Cost Airline in the annual World Airline Survey by Skytrax. About Amadeus Amadeus is the chosen technology partner for providers, sellers, and buyers of travel. The company provides distribution, IT and point-of-sale solutions to help its customers adapt, grow and succeed in the fast changing travel industry. Customer groups include travel providers (airlines, hotels, car rental companies, railway companies, ferry lines, cruise lines, insurance companies and tour operators), travel sellers (travel agencies) and travel buyers (corporations and travellers). Solutions are grouped in four solution categories – Distribution & Content, Sales & e-Commerce, Business Management and Services & Consulting. Amadeus has central sites in Madrid (corporate headquarters & marketing), Nice (development) and Erding (Operations – data processing centre) and regional offices in Miami, Buenos Aires and Bangkok. At market level, Amadeus maintains customer operations through 71 local Amadeus Commercial Organisations covering 219 markets. The company is majority owned by WAM Acquisition, whose shareholders are BC Partners, Cinven, Air France, Iberia and Lufthansa. Amadeus employs over 8,600 employees worldwide, representing 105 nationalities. More information about Amadeus is available at: http://www.amadeus.com Contact details: Amadeus Media Relations / Corporate Marketing tel: +34 91 582 0160 fax : +34 91 582 0188 e-mail : mediarelations@amadeus.com