Airline Review: Spotlight On Everything Malaysia Airlines

Flight attendant helping young girl

4.81min read

Published 9 September 2015


Malaysia Airlines has experienced plenty of highs since its first commercial flight in 1947. Recognition as the leading airline in and to Asia at the World Travel Awards in 2010-11, 2013 and 2015 has provided the base for its worldwide reputation.

Recently rebranded as Malaysia Airlines Berhad, Malaysia's flag carrier has not forgotten its esteemed past, which includes more than 100 awards. The company services around 60 countries with 100 aircraft, but has plans in place to build upon this in the future.

Cabin Classes


Malaysia’s modern Economy Class cabin is fitted with slimline seats allowing for greater personal space and comfort. Offering generous leg room on its long-haul fleet, Malaysia goes on to add further creature comforts such as four or six-way adjustable head rests, lumbar support and footrests.

Entertainment: Personal seat-back video screens and individual in-seat power supply gives passengers the ability to enjoy hours of on-demand entertainment. The seat-back video screen provides hundreds of hours of content from the latest movies and TV series to music, games and travel news. USB and power supply ports ensure passengers are able to use their personal electronic devices throughout the flight.

Food and Beverage: Malaysia Airlines serves an entirely halal menu consisting of hot meal choices of beef, lamb or chicken. Alcoholic drinks as well as juices, soft drinks, coffee and tea are available throughout the flight.

 Flight attendant helping young girl
Enjoy space and entertainment when flying Economy Class (Image: Malaysia Airlines)


Business Class privileges extend to the ground as well as up in the air. From exclusive check-in counters to lounge access and a more generous baggage allowance, Business Class perks are granted right from the start. During the flight, passengers are treated to a wide arm chair with lots of personal space and ample storage areas. Seat controls include multiple recline positions including lie-flat, when the plush pillows and blankets are most enjoyed.

Entertainment: Malaysia’s international wide body fleet features audio, video on demand (AVOD) entertainment on personal seat-back video screens. Passengers can enjoy hours of featured films and TV shows as well as a huge music collection and myriad video games. Each seat also comes with USB and laptop power points so that passengers can enjoy downloaded programming from their own electronic devices.

Food and Beverage: Select from an extensive menu of delicious starters, main meals and desserts specially plated and served individually. The restaurant-style service is enhanced with real crockery and cutlery and the freshest ingredients.

 People relaxing in Malaysia Airlines business class
Settle in to onboard comfort when flying Business Class (Image: Malaysia Airlines)


First Class is only available on the Airbus A380, which is used primarily on routes to London, Paris and Hong Kong from Malaysia’s base in Kuala Lumpur.

Designated check-in facilities and First Class waiting lounges along with a 50-kilogram baggage allowance are just the beginning in a string of features and amenities available in this premier cabin class.

Once in the air, First Class passengers are treated to a wide armchair seat in a privacy suite that features an ottoman, air-to-ground phone and large video screen. When ready for a restful sleep, the seat turns into a comfortable lie-flat bed, complete with a cosy duvet and fluffy pillow.

Entertainment: Guests seated in First Class are treated to a large personal video screen where a wide range of blockbuster movies, TV shows and music favourites can be enjoyed anytime. Additional features include USB and laptop power points.

Food and Beverage:  The First Class menu features 25 meal options with a selection of Malaysian and Western favourites, healthy choices and various chef recommendations. Malaysia’s Chef-on-Call option allows for passengers in First and Business to pre-order their desired meals with just a 24-hour notice.

 Malaysia Airlines first class
First Class lounge on the A380 (Image: Malaysia Airlines)

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Malaysia Airlines Baggage Allowance


Hand luggage allowance is determined by the cabin class. Economy guests are permitted one carry-on piece. First and Business Class guests are permitted two pieces of cabin luggage. Maximum weight for carry-on bags is seven kilograms. Passengers with infants are allowed one additional five-kilogram bag.

Carry On Baggage


The checked baggage allowance depends on the routing, ticket class and destination. North and South American destinations use the piece system allowance while all other destinations go by weight. Malaysia imposes a strict maximum weight limit of 32 kilograms for any one bag for health and safety reasons.

North and South America destinations are allowed two pieces of checked baggage regardless of class flown. The maximum total weight for two bag total in Economy is 23 kilograms. Maximum total weight for First and Business is 32 kilograms.

For all other destinations, guests may check in multiple bags up to a maximum weight limit. Economy Class passengers are allowed any number of bags not exceeding a total of 30 kilograms. Business Class passengers may take up to 40 kilograms and First Class is permitted 50 kilograms.

Luggage allowance for flights on code share partners or alliance member airlines may be different.

Checked Baggage

Bulky items

Most sporting items and musical instruments are permitted and counted as part of the free checked baggage allowance. For bags exceeding maximum size limits, oversized bag fees will apply. Please check with your Flight Centre Travel Consultant for specific sporting packing requirements and size limitations.

Pet containers are not included in the free baggage allowance and will incur an additional excess bag fee.

Archery equipment, boogie boards, bowling equipment, fishing equipment and non-motorised bicycles are all permitted as part of the free baggage allowance. Bicycles require specific packing to be accepted.

Bulky Items

Infant baggage

Infants are allowed one bag and a collapsible stroller or car seat for check-in. The maximum total weight of these items is 10 kilograms. Accompanying adults are allowed to take as additional cabin luggage a collapsible stroller, carry cot and small food and diaper bag.

Restricted or dangerous goods

Dangerous goods are not permitted in carry-on baggage or checked luggage. These items are restricted as they may pose health and safety risks and may interfere with the safe operation of the aircraft. Restricted items include explosives and fireworks, flammable liquids, flammable gasses and solids, corrosive and radioactive materials, oxidizers and other toxic substances. Any questionable items should be brought to the attention of the check-in staff.


In addition to the airport counter, Malaysia Airlines provides guests with several methods for flight check-in.

Self-service check-in

Airport kiosks are available at most Malaysian airports and at selected international destinations. Anyone travelling on an e-ticket may use these convenient devices. Kiosks will print boarding passes and bag tags. Once checked in, proceed to the bag drop-off counter if travelling with checked luggage.

Web check-in

Guests may check in remotely from home or anywhere with an internet connection. Web check-in opens 48 hours before and closes 90 minutes prior to departure. Guests may select their seat and print off boarding passes.

International Check-In Guide

At home

  • Know what time you need to leave the house to get to the airport
  • Pack your things, check out our baggage guide
  • Have your flight itinerary ready
  • Ensure you have your valid passport ready

Getting there

  • Be at the airport at least 120 minutes prior to scheduled departure time

At the airport

  • Proceed to check-in counter with passport and itinerary ready
  • Go through security
  • Continue through customs
  • Check the gate number and flight status
  • Sit down and get comfy!

Golden Lounges

Malaysia’s Golden Lounges are quiet, peaceful retreats, away from the noise and crowds of airport terminals. These elegantly appointed lounges take the stress out of travel with comfortable chairs and lounges, reading materials, snacks and beverages, and even in-house massage therapists.

Guests can connect to the internet with free Wi-Fi and printing and photocopying facilities are available. In addition to Malaysia’s Golden Lounges, elite members of Enrich (loyalty program) have access to over 500 lounges worldwide as part of the Oneworld alliance.

 Couple laughing in the airport lounge
Relax before your flight in the Golden Lounge (Image: Malaysia Airlines)

Enrich Loyalty Program

Enrich is Malaysia Airlines’ frequent flyer program. Membership is free and passengers can sign up online. Enrich rewards members with free flights, travel awards and other status benefits depending upon status level.

Points are earned for travel on Malaysia, Oneworld and codeshare partner flights. Guests must join Enrich to receive miles or points as flights taken before membership will not be applied retroactively.

Enrich consists of four tiers or status levels - Blue, Silver, Gold and Platinum. Members automatically qualify for Blue status upon enrolment. Members must earn the qualifying number of sectors or miles before achieving elite status.

Visit your local Flight Centre store or call 131 600 for more advice and the latest deals.

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