May 23, 2008

What The Hell Is Happening To...

I was procrastinating (h'm, taking a productive break) from Molecular Cell Biology a few days back when I bump into the aviation forum Malaysianwings. Being a hardcore aviation enthusiast the 'productive break' quickly spiraled into a helpless fascination and hours glued to the screen reading forum posts.
It's been to my knowledge a few months ago that my favorite airline is undergoing some major changes in their cabins, with new uniforms rolling out replacing the old melon-colored kebaya very soon. And in all Indo-China routes hot meals had been replaced by the 'Snekbox'.
All photos from Malaysianwings unless otherwise indicated:

MAS says they got 91% satisfaction for their Snekbox...

...which consist of some Sandwic, fruit, air (water or air?) and typically some sweeties.

Another variation of the Snekbox, with a bakery bun, cake and yoghurt.

Eliminating hot meals means cutting lots of costs involved in passenger meals - hot food needs to be prepared fresh, rapidly chilled, and re-heated again onboard before serving. With the 91%-satisfaction snekbox MAS staff can earn extra income by doing OT packing the boxes, and send them to the airport for the following day's flight. Wallah, clever move!
However, it seems awkward to many that an airline which boast itself being 'more than just an airline code; MH is Malaysian Hospitality' would serve something so...common on its flights. Less than a year ago the hot meals usually comes in 2 options - Asian and Western. The Asian meal, being representative of Malaysia, would usually be Nasi Lemak or Rendang. And now, a Sandwic? Where is Malaysian Hospitality?
And I doubt the packaging is more expensive than the contents...

Serving the cheap snekboxes with award-winning cabin crew won't help.

Last but not least, they've decided to overhaul the seat fabric as well. Remember the oh-so-classy squarish seat covers they had? The square designs are reminiscent of a weaving motif of Sarawak (of which minority group I couldn't recall). They don't look classy like the leather seats of AirAsia, but at least it's some representation of Malaysian Hospitality.

I am especially attached to 737s of MAS as they are the usually the last flight before home.

And now...the new seat fabric...

Seems they will introduce flights directly to Bollywood very soon. Let's pray the colors are not going to stay. Give me back the blue-green covers! (The above seat covers are only applicable to domestic flights as of time of writing.)
Luckily for me Taipei is not an Indo-China destination, and Penang is too short for them to dish out Snekboxes. So, for my next flight with MAS I will still get nice hot meals and full-can sodas. But I do have to make two Kuala Lumpur-Penang trips this August. Let's hope the Bollywood covers would be history by then.


Melvin said...

hey JY... of course i remember you la.... ISM was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I never will forget all my wonderful teammates =)
I see you're going France? any chance coming to Manchester to see me? :p