Flying With A Baby On Malaysia Airlines?

flying with baby, malaysia airlines, banning babies, babies on flights

Babies Not First Class Citizens?

Recent headlines suggest Malaysia Airlines is the first airline to ban babies on flights. In fact, it was a twitter exchange between Malaysia Airlines’ CEO Tengku Azmil and an Australian travel writer that “confirms” Malaysia Airlines will not be installing bassinets in the first class cabins of their 747-400 and upcoming A380 aircraft – alluding to the possibility that infants will not be allowed in first class. Hardly banning babies on flights at all, and actually, not even saying with certainty that all babies will not be allowed in first class.

I may not have a journalism degree, but something tells me confirming a story on Twitter is not the pinnacle of journalistic excellence… but I digress.

Bassinets are sometimes offered by airlines in the bulkhead rows of seats. Typically they are not allowed for infants over a certain weight, and should not be used once baby is old enough to sit unassisted. However, flying with babies is a pain, so if you manage to reserve a bassinet, having that extra space just to hold stuff while you hold the baby is a bit of a luxury.

Bassinets are not offered for ticketed infants. Bassinets are customarily reserved for parents flying with a lap infant only. This is where the whole Malaysia Airlines thing has (possibly) been blown out of proportion. The aircraft mentioned are used for long-haul flights, a full-fare first class return ticket from London Heathrow to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia is over £5000. If a parent wanted to purchase a full-fare first class return ticket for their infant, to use with an approved-for-flight car seat, I have a hard time believing that Malaysia Airlines would refuse to sell that ticket. I think what Malaysia Airlines is saying, is that lap infants will be discouraged in their first class cabins on long-haul flights, as parents won’t have access to bassinets.

**Hardly as exciting as saying babies are banned from first class**

I’ve emailed Malaysia Airlines for confirmation that infants are, in fact, banned from these first class cabins. I’ve also “tweeted” CEO Tengku Azmil as well. Seeing as such outlets as The Globe And Mail, and the LA Times are willing to accept tweets as credible sources, who am I to argue?

EDITED TO ADD:
So Tengku Azmil tweeted me back this morning: “We do not take infants in 1st Class whether on their own seat or on the lap. We do lose some revenue but many ppl complained”

Malaysia Airlines may want to update their online booking process, as this was not mentioned when I tested booking a flight from London to Kuala Lupur.

Oh well. Wouldn’t handing out noise-cancelling headphones to 1st class passengers than restricting potential revenue?And doesn’t Tengku realize that toddlers are way more annoying than infants? ;)

 

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6 Responses to Flying With A Baby On Malaysia Airlines?

  1. Andrea Claire at 23:39 #

    I always get agitated with stories about babies/children on planes. As you know I travel all the time too. We sit in the front, back middle… business, economy… always someone on board has a crack about babies on planes and they like to talk in a slightly louder voice so you hear that they aren’t happy that a baby is on the plane. Common one is ‘Great, now no one will sleep. There’s a baby on this plane’

    I’ve heard as I’m settling my daughter into her business class seat that there should be age restrictions. Another crack, always pleasant to hear.

    What about the guy who drinks to much and makes learing comments to the flight attendants? [seen this often in business class] What about the one who sleeps, snores and drools onto your shoulder? What about the people who spend way too long in the toilets and then never clean up after themselves?

    Too much grief is put on travellers with babies. There are good and bad travels in all age brackets and in all classes of seating. Babies can’t be controlled with their crying but the ones who drink too much and become obnoxious should be banned…

    Ok. Rant done. :D

    Good post!

  2. Corinne at 07:55 #

    Agreed on all points! Imagine the headlines if airlines restricted booze…

  3. Andrea Claire at 07:57 #

    I’d be the first one to jump on that too! :D

  4. britishworkingmum at 11:48 #

    it’s seems that it’s always been fine to take babies in business class/economy – just first class (only available in EMEA).

    i travel a lot with work and sometimes when my loft masters allow it, i’ll go first class – even as a mum myself i think i agree with malaysia airline’s!

  5. Corinne at 13:29 #

    I can’t agree with you, BWM – I think it’s a really scary precedent to set.

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  1. Fishy Logic in Malaysian Airlines First Class Baby Ban | PhD in Parenting -

    […] case you are thinking that this can’t really be true, check out the update in the post on Have Baby, Will Travel, in which the Malaysian Airlines CEO is quoted as saying: “We do not take infants in 1st Class […]