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Saturday, 14 June 2014, Kuala Lumpur: “Thanks for 22 great years of flying as Malaysia Airlines” was the key message that greeted passengers as they disembarked flight MH1165 from Penang arriving at KLIA this evening. The same was told to passengers on 3 other flights earlier this evening, arriving from Johor Bahru and Kota Bharu.
Arriving passengers were greeted by Malaysia Airlines senior management and presented with special memorabilia postcards to mark the occasion.
These flights were the last for the Boeing 737-400 series fleet which will be decommissioned, to make way for newer aircraft to operate the national airline.
According to Malaysia Airlines Group CEO, Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, “The Boeing 734 has been a real workhorse for us, reliably flying our guests for the past 22 years. Now it is time to make way for newer aircraft for our guests’ greater comfort. So we say Thank You to our Boeing 734 fleet – Thank You for 22 Great Years of Flying as Malaysia Airlines.”
Over the years, since May 1992, Malaysia Airlines operated a total of 54 B737-400 series aircraft, making it operator of the largest fleet of B737-400 outside of the United States of America at one point of time.
With a good safety record, the B737-400 were used to operate mainly domestic routes, including the important jet crossing from Peninsular Malaysia to Sabah and Sarawak. The aircraft also flew to selected short-haul Southeast Asia destinations.
The retirement of the B737-400 enables Malaysia Airlines to soon have one of the youngest fleets in the world, reducing it average age of fleet from 4.7 years currently to 4.35 years by the end of 2014.
Malaysia Airlines today has 151 aircrafts in its fleet, including the Airbus A380s, A333s and B777 used for long-haul routes, B737-800s for domestic and regional routes, as well as the new ATR72-600 series turbo-props.
From now on, the national carrier’s narrow-body fleet will comprise entirely of the new B737-800 series with its winglets that enable better fuel efficiency. Malaysia Airlines currently has 56 B737-800s in operation. Equipped with in-seat inflight entertainment, Boeing’s Sky Interior, roomier cabin space and modern seating, the environmentally-friendly B737-800 series jets has been popular with guests.
According to Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, “With the retirement of our B737-400 fleet, Malaysia Airlines continues to be competitive in delivering a quality product with great service onboard”.