The Rojak Pot

AirAsia Unlimited Pass : NOT Worth The Hassle!

The AirAsia Unlimited Pass promises UNLIMITED AIR TRAVEL to five countries, for a whole year!

But seriously, the AirAsia Unlimited Pass is A WASTE OF MONEY, unless you fit certain criteria.

 

AirAsia Unlimited Pass : What Is It?

Stung by the Airbus bribery scandal and the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis, the AirAsia Unlimited Pass promotion is their effort to stem the bleed.

From 29 February to 7 March 2020, members of the AirAsia BIG Members frequent flyer program can now buy an Unlimited Pass which would allow them to fly to select countries on AirAsia X, as many times as they wish – for a year :

Recommended : AirAsia Unlimited Pass : Destinations + Embargo Dates!

That sounds like an AWESOME deal, doesn’t it? Who doesn’t want unlimited air flights to all five countries for a whole year?

However, AirAsia threw in so many caveats, the Unlimited Pass is almost useless… unless you are willing to put up with the hassle.

 

AirAsia Unlimited Pass : Long Story Short!

For those who don’t have the time to read, here is our quick summary of what you need to know :

  1. COVID-19 will prevent / discourage you from using the Unlimited Pass for many months.
  2. You are limited to flights over 4 hours, and only with the D7 or XJ carrier codes.
  3. You are NOT guaranteed tickets, because there are limited promo seats on each flight.
  4. The Unlimited Pass also may not apply during peak periods like weekends, public holidays and school holidays.
  5. Families should NOT bother with the Unlimited Pass. Holidays should be fun, not torture.
  6. You must be willing to book your ticket, and be seated, separately from anyone you are travelling with.
  7. It is best purchased and used by retirees, or singles / couples who have flexible working arrangements and can travel on working days.

 

AirAsia Unlimited Pass : Why It’s Not Worth Considering…

Reason #1 : Remember COVID-19?

Four of those five countries are in the throes of fighting COVID-19, and it is unlikely that India won’t be affected soon. And the COVID-19 coronavirus is spreading, not receding.

So how likely do you think you will be travelling to those countries over the next 12 months, even if there is no travel ban?

IMHO, many people will not be travelling (voluntarily) to China, Korea, Japan and Australia in the next 6 monthsat the very least.

Reason #2 : You’re NOT Guaranteed A Flight

With tourism falling off the cliff over the next few months, not only will people cancel their flights, so will airlines.

Even if you are fearless, it doesn’t mean AirAsia will be fearless as well, or stupid enough to fly an almost empty plane just because you insist on flying.

As stated in their rules (see below), buying the AirAsia Unlimited Pass does NOT guarantee you to a flight. It is up to them to decide whether you qualify for a flight to your destination.

Reason #3 : Severe Limitations On Tickets

It’s stated in their Q&A (conveniently located in a separate page) that :

These limitations are designed to reduce your ability to fly as often as you would like using the AirAsia Unlimited Pass.

Families, for example, must be willing to be seated separately. That’s probably why they are limiting it to children who are 12 years and older.

Unless you are retired, single or a couple, and able to travel during work days, you may not even have the opportunity to use the AirAsia Unlimited Pass at all!

Recommended : AirAsia Unlimited Pass : How To Plan + Book Your Flights!

Reason #4 : Forced To Pay Full Price

Flying as a group will be problematic, because there are limited seats available for the AirAsia Unlimited Pass.

What will likely happen is that some of your group will be able to use their Unlimited Pass, while the others will have to pay full price for their tickets.

The way out would be to split the group up, and fly on separate flights. But obviously, this makes travel much more of a hassle.

And remember – even if you get to fly out with the Unlimited Pass, you may not get to do so on the way back. You may have to pay full price, unless you are able and willing to adjust your return date according to what’s available for the Unlimited Pass.

Reason #5 : Fuel, Baggage + Other Fees

Even if you manage to several flights using the AirAsia Unlimited Pass, they aren’t free. You will still need to cough up extra money for ancillary fees.

Budget airlines like AirAsia make a large percentage of their profits not from flight tickets, but from ancillary revenue – administrative fees, baggage fees, assigned seat fees, flight insurance, cancellations, documentation, meals, merchandise, fuel surcharges, etc.

Frequent AirAsia travellers will also tell you that these ancillary fees often cost as much as, or even more, than the flight tickets!

 

AirAsia Unlimited Pass : Who Should Buy It?

Based on the severe restrictions AirAsia places on the Unlimited Pass, the best people to buy the Unlimited Pass should meet these requirements :

Everyone else should not bother. Really. Travel should be fun, not a torture.

And we should point out that the target group above can often get free or heavily discounted flights on AirAsia without the Unlimited Pass.

So all the AirAsia Unlimited Pass does is “force” you to travel more on AirAsia – they won’t make money from your flights, but they will make their money from your ancillary fees.

 

AirAsia Unlimited Pass : The Caveats

AirAsia conveniently lists the caveats of the Unlimited Pass in two sections in a separate Q&A page, which we have combined and summarised here (with our emphasis) :

 

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