It wasn’t until recently when I realised just how much Air Asia has influenced my life in the past three years. This odd realization came while chatting to a stranger about my wedding which I celebrated last year in Ubud, Bali “Oooh that sounds so romantic, how did you decide to marry in Bali?”, “Air Asia had cheap flights…”, “Huh?”. This is now the norm in my life. Living in Bangkok we are fortunate to have flexible working hours, I study through distance learning and Allan on the blog and this gives us flexible times to travel. We therefore make the most of these times with Air Asia offers, and flight bookings in advance. So the day after our engagement we look to wedding plans and our scheduled flights for the coming months. “We’re flying to Bali in April?”, “Perfect, our wedding will be in Bali.” Before we know it my family and friends are booked on Air Asia flights leaving Thailand to join our wedding celebrations. For my parents it was their first ever time on a plane, so it was a new and magical experience for all 🙂 On the 25th of April we marry in Ubud, Bali using flights booked almost a year earlier in May the previous year. So I don’t know if I should be embarrassed by my frugal jet-setting or proud of it. While we no doubt look like cheapskates, we also travel better, cheaper, and more often than ever before. Air Asia are the best low cost carrier in Southeast Asia and without them our travels, and life would no doubt be a little more bland.
I can’t remember the last time when there were no flights in the pipeline. We now sit in anticipation of our winter and New Year escapes with two new destinations on our list. These wintery getaways were inspired from last year’s offers having jumped on some ridiculously cheap flights to Xian for Christmas which we then followed up with New Year in Beijing. So the first of our flights will be from Bangkok to Chongqing China (January). We will travel a bit in the area, including Zhangjeijei and the avatar views, before flying back to Bangkok from Changsha. Not long after these travels we will fly to Tokyo, Japan for two weeks exploring everywhere we can. Again, both these travels were booked months in advance and at the time were completely unexpected. This goes more so for Tokyo and we booked it just weeks into saving pennies for our China travels. But we didn’t have much choice here. Long ago we agreed that Japan was a destination we could never pass on given that we find incredibly cheap flights. “If we ever find Tokyo flights for less than 8,000 Baht we book them? Deal?” At the time we never expected to find them this cheap so when they pop up on Air Asia at 7,790 Baht, we were shocked… and couldn’t say no. The next minute and a couple of clicks later “Yeay! We’re going to Tokyo!”
To date, many of our most exciting and adventurous journeys have come from destinations which we did not expect. The perfect example of this would be the now discontinued Kolkata route from Bangkok where I honestly had little enthusiasm for the visit… but it was too cheap to turn down… After booking the flights we look further into other options in the area and given 10 days of travel we find ourselves roaming up into the Himalayas and the less visited areas of India’s Sikkim. Few people ever follow these routes, or at least tourists don’t, so we managed to get well off the beaten track and find experiences few others ever will. Now I will often get more excited for the lesser known destinations on the Air Asia routes.
Completing the Tick-List
While we never set out to complete a tick-list we did accomplish one at the end of this year. In December we inadvertently covered every Southeast Asian country in the ASEAN zone (10 in total) the final country ticked off with a last minute in the rainforests of Brunei. This would be the last of this region and we are now pushing further into East Asia . If I were to look back at journeys together, the very first was to Hong Kong and Macau. Since then we haven’t really stopped. At any given time there has always been at least one Air Asia flight in the pipeline and now our lives have become focused on travel. However it is very rare for us to choose our own destinations and the next journey will more-than-not depend on what Air Asia promotions offer us next (Taiwan and Korea… Please). So after Hong Kong and Macau it was Malaysia, then Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, India, China, Vietnam, Cambodia… As long as Air Asia keeps adding routes, we will continue to keep flying.