Sunday, December 18, 2011

Truly Malaysian Carrier

Malaysia is a nation located in the Asia Pacific region. It is a nation with full of cultural diversity. Being a nation with Malay culture, Indian culture, Chinese culture, Punjabi culture, Kadazan culture, Iban culture and the others all put in together inside one nation, is it relevant to say that Malaysia Airlines are truly a Malaysian carrier? Malaysia Airlines represent the nation on a global stage and must show all the cultural diversity of the nation. Looking back at the past, Malaysia is a nation that is populated by Malays. But time over time after the Independence Day and Malaysia got its name, the identity of Malaysia is not only on the Malay cultures but also all the other culture which makes Malaysia it’s own identity. Malaysia Airlines are currently promoting the Malaysian culture with the uniform of their flight attendants, in-flight food, the airline’s logo and even their tag line, which is “MH: Malaysian Hospitality”.

Currently the uniform of the steward are a white t-shirt, green slacks, a tie, and a coat. Isn’t that resembles the western identity? Yes, it is practical but still there are many more Malaysian fashion that could be the uniform for Malaysia Airlines stewards. Looking into the Malaysian culture there are so many fashion to choose from which are also practical for all the stewards in Malaysia Airlines. A mixture of Malaysian clothing design must be put into the creation of a perfect uniform for Malaysia Airlines flight attendants to promote Malaysia’s culture at the world stage. For the stewardess of Malaysia Airlines, the “kebaya” with a “batik” design is only showing the Malay side of the total Malaysian culture. This is not using the full potential of being a nation with such cultural diversity. Even the checks in staffs are using the same uniforms. Even so Malaysia Airlines can’t mix cultural designs into one uniform, Malaysia Airlines can still have different uniforms for every staffs according to their job scope. For example, by having “kebaya” for stewardess, cheongsam for check in staff, and Punjabi suit for ticketing all with one texture to show uniformity.

Only the in-flight food can show some of the Malaysian culture. This is such as the “Nasi Lemak with Sambal Prawn”, which is a signature dish for first class cuisine in Malaysia Airlines. The “Nasi Lemak” was a result from the mixture of various cultures. Malay, Indian and also Chinese cooking styles were put into one dish. But even though this can represent on what truly Malaysia is on the global scale, it is still not enough for a national airline such as Malaysia Airlines.

Since the airline logo was created a long time ago and it’s serves as the airline’s identity, changing it would be out of the question. But still the logo, which is a shape of a “Wau Bulan” one of the Malay’s cultural kite, does not show the true identity of Malaysia. For an airline with a tagline “MH: Malaysian Hospitality”, Malaysia Airlines should change in accordance with time to really show what is Malaysia in the world stage.

In conclusion, travellers now are more attracted to cultures, foods and scenery. So Malaysia Airlines should give them a sneak peak of Malaysia within every flight. Marketing consist of 4 P’s, which are Price, Place, Product and Promotion. So where is the promotion part when there are limitless possibility on promoting as a Malaysian carrier. Malaysia Airlines can make more profit by evolving in accordance with time.

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