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Archive for 21/05/2013


RB flying forward

Written by Rano Iskandar. Posted in RA News

Double Daily to KL 


Click image to enter website




Exciting things from RB


Pehin Orang Kaya Hamzah Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awg Hj Abdullah graced the ceremony of Royal Brunei Airlines double daily flight to KL. Also in the picture are Jamilah Abdul Halim, Director of Tourism Malaysia (Brunei), Abd Mutalib, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Communications, Dato Paduka Hj Bahrin, Deputy Minister of Finance and Chairman of RB, Dermot Mannion, Deputy Chairman of Royal Brunei Airlines and Mariani Hj Sabtu, Acting Director of Tourism Development Board (Brunei) yesterday held at the Muhibah room, Airport Restaurant

A moment for the guest of honour from RB. The event took place yesterday morning prior to our flight to KL where the program continued

Royal Brunei Airlines (RB) are in the process of rebranding and they have created some presence in the UK lately and also in the region and wow, I’m pretty impressed with their rebranded products and services. Tomorrow will be a milestone for RB as they will be flying to Kuala Lumpur twice daily from Brunei. This is good news because of the high traffic of Bruneians flying over to KL. It was noted by Dayang Mariani binti Hj Sabtu, Acting Director of Tourism Development Board, that there is a figure of over a million visits alone from Brunei to Malaysia. That’s like 3 times more than our population. Perhaps it’s also safe to say that most of the frequency takes place between Brunei and Miri.

Of yesterday’s multiple events, I have to salute Dermot Mannion, Deputy Chairman of Royal Brunei Airlines, for his great leadership under RB ever since his appointment in 2009 and how he has turned the national carrier around step by step. Some of the new things introduced was the revamped online booking system and this year was the rebranding of Royal Brunei Airlines with their new logo and also a new theme carrying the message of “A Redefined Journey”.

I could feel the previous leaders or CEOs of the airline did their best but I honestly felt the stagnancy in the direction they were heading then. To tell you frankly, a few years ago, I had this feeling where I would make RB my second preference for flight bookings. It was more of a confidence thing and slowly after seeing the changes and the new direction it is heading, I began to believe in RB. Now with this being said, this shows how these small little steps can slowly change one’s mindset and made that difference.

After seeing Dermot’s presentation last night dinner event, I’m much more excited about the new things to come for RB. The rebranding process has slowly paid off and I truly agree that it’s not about the destination but the experience of the journey that makes a difference. Yes, there may still be complains here and there but RB has taken things more serious now and I could see the improvements over the past year or so.

RB’s presence of social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and instagram (@royalbruneiair) have also made communication easier and accessible and it also have played an important role in reaching to a bigger community especially through sharing information.

What I’m truly looking forward to is the the Dreamliner Boeing 787 which will make its debut insyaAllah by September 2013. The Dreamliner will be flown from Seattle and I hope I’m able to experience the new livery in September. The other tentative dates for 2nd, 3rd and 4th Dreamliner are October 2013, February 2014 and March 2014. For the record, RB will be the first airline in ASEAN to own a Dreamliner. That really shows of RB’s vision of moving forward and taking that extra step. I remember such news of Dreamliner was even announced back in year 2007 and supposedly scheduled for delivery in 2009 which didn’t materialized. So this time, it’s for real.

So what’s impressive about the Boeing 787 Dreamliner? It’s fuel efficient by 20% and that will help to reduce cost in a long run. In fact, it’s the most fuel-efficient airline. They have bigger seats even in economy section and this also means more leg room. You also won’t feel as suffocated (not saying that you will *lol*) but because you will leave the airline feeling fresher because the cabin pressure allows more oxygen to be absorbed into your blood. Did you know also that the Dreamliner generate 60% less noise than the standard planes especially during take-off and landing? So just imagine once you are on air.. it will be quieter than usual.

Dato Sri Mohd Effendi Morwawi with his spouse Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina looking at the RB’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner model at last night’s event

This is a planned appearance of how the interior of 787 Dreamliner looks like. Image taken from http://dreamliner.thomson.col.uk

Anyway, enough about the Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Let’s focus on the main subject here and that is the RB’s moving forward in terms of the double daily flight to Kuala Lumpur. This is a good indication for Brunei Tourism Development as well as Tourism Malaysia to explore more opportunities and work on the synergies and each other’s strengths.

Last night event also made a significant impact on the journalists and the media in Malaysia. Some said it’s the first time they have seen Royal Brunei organizing such event or dinner for their milestones and rebranding phase. This shows that RB is not taking this campaign lightly and they want to create an impact and branding awareness of RB’s vision and objectives and make make one’s journey a “redefined” one.

After a slightly turbulent phase back in 2011 (where routes such as Brisbane, Perth, Kuching, Auckland and Ho Chi Minh City were cut off and also the restructuring of the company began), RB is gaining back its momentum, thanks to the direction of Dermot Mannion who has a solid track record of achievement in airline operations, characterized by strong cash flow, improved productivity, low unit costs, excellent customer service and high staff morale. So far, he has a planted new seeds and give it a few more years and you will probably see how much different and improved RB has been since its restructuring phase.

Hats off to Dermot Mannion and his team of their new era and keep it up!!! Oh thank you to Royal Brunei Airlines also for inviting me exclusively for the coverage of this important milestone in Kuala Lumpur.

Upon arrival at the KLIA where our flight was blessed. Thank you @emmagoodegg for the wonderful moment shot

The traditional dance performance for the special guests

Another cake cutting ceremony held at the boarding room at KLIA. Also present during the press conference were Syed Yahya Syed Othman, Director of Tourism Malaysia, Dato Paduka Hj Ishaaq, Brunei High Commissioner to Malaysia, Dato’ Azmi Murad, Senior General Manager of Operations Services Malaysia Airports, Dermot Mannion, Deputy Chairman of Royal Brunei Airlines and Karam Chand, Chief Commercial and Planning Officer at Royal Brunei Airlines

Group photo with the guests

Karam Chand at the press conference yesterday upon arrival at KLIA

Members of the local media from KL

This is a special privilege –> To actually dine in inside a boarding room *lol*

Dermot took the KLIA Express train to KL Central. More on this service later on. It’s very ideal if you want to reach the city in less than an hour 😀

Muaz preparing for the evening’s event

On my right, Mr. David Hogan, founder of MalaysiaAsia and I love his job because he travels (more than me). Next to him is his Chinese editor of MalaysiaAsia, Janice Wong. Do check the website out!!!

This is to be launched by July in business class. Now you can watch movies or play games or listen to music through means of iPad. Of course, you won’t be able to access the internet. The experience alone using iPad Minis on a plane is just a first step.

Dermot appreciating the RB management team based in KL

Ok, this is the finale of the cake cutting ceremony which took place last night at Hotel Istana

Another press conference held last night and a lot of focus targeted on RB’s rebranding program. Dermot announced that RB invested USD 1 million in their rebranding journey.

Datin Seri Tiara Jacquilena who is famously known for her big role in Puteri Gunung Ledang had a photo opportunity with RB air steward and stewardess. Also in the picture is Jamilah Abd Rahman

Datin said service is the most important and she would like to fly RB one day.




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