Changi Airport as a good benchmark for Terminal 3, KLIA.

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Someone forwarded me a property related news article about KLIA having started planning for Terminal 3. Well, let’s learn a little about KLIA versus the closest competing airport in the region, Changi. Reported in Channel News Asia, Changi airport welcomed 40.9 million passengers within the first 9 months of 2015. If we assume arrivals remain the same and annualise this, it will be around 55 million. Quite a huge number and this is one major reason why Changi airport is always bustling with people and there are now three terminals with Terminal 4 (T4) to be ready by 2017. There are already plans for Terminal 5 as well to be built on reclaimed land. What about our very own KLIA and KLIA2?

According to a passenger traffic snapshot by Malaysia Airports, the first 6 months of 2015 saw a total of over 24 million passengers passing by KLIA which meant that it’s very near to its full capacity of 25 million passengers. I think this is also the reason why more shops and retail outlets are now opened there. KLIA2 meanwhile handled 12.3 million for the first six month of 2015 and if we annualised it, KLIA2 will be handling nearly 25 million passengers for 2015. Total capacity for KLIA 2 is at 45 million. It can accommodate more budget airlines and I think this budget industry would continue to grow faster than the non-budget ones. Some estimates have said that KLIA 2 will be able to support passenger growth for the next 10-15 years.

Well, I seriously think Terminal 3 is still rather far away but of course, we should always plan ahead. Perhaps good to keep announcing so that everyone can keep commenting. As for today, in total, KLIA and KLIA 2 handles less passengers than Changi airport and this is hardly surprising since any airline coming into ASEAN will most probably choose Singapore first due to the connectivity. This is where the opportunity lies. China, India and Japan would be that few countries that we should somehow have more direct flights with. China and India for the size of their population and Japan for the huge senior population which would definitely be more at home in Malaysia plus golf versus many other nations. Happy flying.

written on 23 Nov 2015

Next suggested article: KLIA’s new mall, the MItsui Outlet Park

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