Direct Flights to Sabah

Direct flights to Sabah has been recently approved with the introduction of four new direct flights to Kota Kinabalu and will further increase foreign arrivals from the Asia Pacific region. New and reinstated direct flights from Shanghai (starting 12 Dec), Hong Kong (starting 19 Dec), Osaka (starting 26 Dec) and Perth (starting Jan 1, 2013) bring a total of 13 international cities flying direct to Kota Kinabalu or KKIA. This also amounts to a seat capacity of more than 18,000 weekly from 11 airlines in the region which will most likely help increase tourism dollars to the state that is also known as Land Below the Wind. 

Sabah Tourism Board Chairman, Datuk Seri Tengku Zainal Adlin also mentioned to the press that "Shanghai is their gateway to Sabah through high speed connectivity" and "We are looking to 2013 and beyond. The State Government is drawing strategic plans in increasing air accessibility as 96 per cent of our arrivals arrive by air," he said. Three other direct routes reinstated by Malaysia Airlines are Hong Kong (Dec. 1) and Perth (Dec. 9) and from Osaka (to be implemented Dec. 20).

 KKIA Picture taken from a helicopter

There has also been an increase in foreign arrivals into Sabah since October this year, to more than 14.5 per cent or 779,845, compared to the same period last year. Currently, the Kota Kinabalu International Airport is also hands down the busiest airport in the entire island of Borneo. With the new flights coming in, it is guaranteed to get the tourism industry busy especially with the preparation of Visit Malaysia 2014 coming up and many will opt for direct flights to Sabah.