“I will fly with Rayani Air……………” Before I could finish my sentence, I was cut off by my group of colleagues with various comments, none which are kind to the airline.
We were having a group lunch to mark the first official working day of 2016 when I suddenly brought up the topic of Rayani Air. This Islamic or syariah compliant full fledge airline have been under heavy criticism since its maiden flight in December 2015. It is in the news again today when it announces that it will appoint Datuk Haron Din, PAS’s spiritual adviser as its advisor pertaining to Islamic matters.
Rayani Air has been called with many labels including ISIS Airline for its bosses’ bold idea of making it an airline that runs in compliance with Islamic practices. Many have deemed this idea inappropriate for a multi-cultural and multi-religion Malaysia. Equally as many people are waiting to see how long will this airline stay on air and whether will it receive a government bailout or subsidy because it is “Islamic”. Needless to say, the call to boycott this airline is equally loud too.
To be fair to Rayani Air, I will fly with them before giving my judgement. I want to experience for myself how it is like when I fly with a “religious” airline in a time when half of Malaysia are calling for the practice of moderation with the other half are drifting towards the extreme.
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I am looking at the Kuala Lumpur – Kuching route that this airline is starting in February 2016. However, I think my flight journey with Rayani Air doesn’t start well. The airline’s website www.rayaniair.com is not accessible despite a few tries via my laptop and mobile phone. Ah….probably the World Wide Web is not syariah complaint thus the hiccup….lol!! Nevertheless, I will try again.