AirAsia opens first restaurant serving inflight meals

In another major stride towards cementing itself as a lifestyle brand that sells more than just airline tickets, AirAsia has commercialised its inflight menu to launch its first on the ground restaurant, Santan Restaurant and T&CO Café, at the Mid Valley Megamall in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

The fast food outlet, which opened for business yesterday, promises a maximum four-minute wait time for orders made at the outlet. Menu prices at the restaurant are slightly higher compared to pre-orders meals on AirAsia’s flights, as airline meal portions are smaller.

Photo Caption: (From left) Santan Restaurant and T&CO Cafe’s Catherine Goh, AirAsia’s Fam Lee Ee, deputy secretary-general of domestic trade Alauddin Sidal, AirAsia Group’s Tony Fernandes, minister of domestic trade and consumer affairs Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, AirAsia Group’s Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, AirAsia’s Aziz Bakar, and AirAsia Group’s Aireen Omar at the Santan and T&CO flagship restaurant launch at the Mid Valley Megamall in Kuala Lumpur

Santan Restaurant and T&CO Cafe’s general manager Catherine Goh said: “We have seen a significant appetite for our in-flight menu offerings beyond our flights across the region and this is our answer to that demand… By the end of 2020, we aim to have five Santan restaurants and 100 franchise-operated restaurants and cafes within the next three to five years with expansions in global markets.”

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes shared that it was his dream to open a Santan restaurant at the Times Square in the US. He added that he was also looking at franchise opportunities within South-east Asia and beyond, with a franchise set to open soon in China.

While Santan Restaurant and T&CO Café will compete with many other restaurants selling local and South-east Asian favourites, Fernandez said that its competitive edge lies in its pricing, quick customer service response time, and hyper-personalisation by leveraging big data to further customise its food offerings to cater to customers’ food preferences.

Designed to enhance customers’ dining experience through a personalised digital journey, the restaurant and cafe features a smart menu equipped with artificial intelligence and machine learning, which is able to serve up recommendations based on time, past ordering patterns as well as demographic taste.

Customers can order ahead online at or the T&CO mobile app before collecting their orders at the outlet.

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