Yesterday (Sunday, 20th December 2015/8 Rabiulawal 1437H) marked yet another milestone in the aviation industry of Malaysia as Rayani Air, the country’s first Syariah-compliant airline’s inaugural flight, RN0600, took off from its main hub, Langkawi International Airport (LGK) and touched down at klia2 (KUL) at 1000.
What sets this new airline apart?
First, Muslim female cabin crew are compelled to wear the tudung (hijab). But, that does not mean that non-Muslims are neglected.
Second, there is a doa recitation by the lead steward before take-off of every flight.
Third, all foods and drinks are 100% halal.
For the record, it will deploy 2 Boeing 737-400s for starters,with Langkawi to Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) . Other destinations from klia2 include Kota Bharu (KBR), Kota Kinabalu (BKI), and Kuching (KCH). Plans are afoot to expand the network to include umrah and haj packages and international destinations within South-east Asia, Australia, and China.
Anyway, I would like to say Mabruk (Arabic for Congratulations) to RN for addressing the concerns that Muslims may have when it comes to travelling by air. I hope Malaysia Airlines (MAS) including its subsidiary FireFly (FY) and MASwings, AirAsia (AK,QZ,D7,etc), and Malindo Air (OD) will emulate this noble effort. This should deserve the entry to the Malaysia Book of Records as the first (or possibly THE only] Syariah-compliant airline in Malaysia.
Finally, I shall say that amid the tragedies of MH370, MH17, and QZ8501 last year (in 2014), there is indeed a hope for aviation industry in Malaysia. Insya-Allah [God Willing], I shall [NOT will] fly RN, and I urge my fellow Malaysian Muslims to support this new airline.It’s very good for you (or rather us all).