Malaysia Airlines is still on the path to recovery after two disasters rocked the airline industry and the world in 2014–the disappearance of MH370 with 239 people and the bombing of flight MH17 over the Ukraine which claimed 298 lives.
In an interview with Travel Weekly on Monday, MAS Chief Executive Peter Bellew said the company is on the road to recovery with increased load factors reported at the beginning of March compared with last year. In addition, the airline has started to hire again for various positions, a big change from 2014 when they were forced to cut 6,000 jobs as bookings evaporated.
“There is a belief that we owe it to the staff and families to build the airline back up again. No group in history has been through what we have been through so it’s built a bit of steel among us,” he was quoted as saying.
The Economist reported in 2016 that although neither event appeared to be in the company’s control, the company would be the one to bear the brunt of the damage as travelers “deserted” the airline.
In January 2017, the airline was said to be “slightly ahead of schedule” in their recovery, the Sun Daily reported. The report said the national carrier may be profitable in 2018 as money flow recovers.
In September 2016, the airline began picking up market share, the first sign of light since a two-year restructuring. Despite the disasters, the airline decided not to go through a major brand or name change, deciding instead to continue with the repaint of all aircraft and conduct a company restructuring. Changes were weighed but never made, the Guardian reported.
Travelers have now started to fly Malaysia Airlines again but it is unclear whether the airline will be able to fully recover from the disasters, one of which, MH370, is still an unsolved mystery and in the minds of many.
Bellew revealed in his Travel Weekly interview that the search for MH370 will now move to a more scientific approach going forward, based on raw data and not vast ocean searches.