Malaysia Airlines, the government-owned, flag-carrying airline of Malaysia, is scheduling to join the Oneworld alliance by the end of this year.
The airline is to fine-tune its carry on baggage policy in the run up to its acceptance into the alliance. It is increasing the weight of the one carry-on luggage item that is allowed in economy class, from 5kg to 7kg, and increasing the allowance to first and business class passengers to two items, each of a maximum 7kg. Bags are restricted to maximum dimensions of 56cm x 36cm x 23cm, and in addition passengers will be allowed ‘a notebook/laptop or briefcase or a binocular bag’, as well as ‘a small handbag and walking stick.’
Despite the airline’s efforts to standardise its baggage policy for ease of integration with its new partners, there will still be disparity. For example, Cathay Pacific’s baggage policy states a limit of 7kg for economy and premium economy passengers, 10kg for business class passengers, and 15kg for those in first class. While British Airways’ policy advises travellers that their hand luggage may weigh up to 23kg, subject to the passenger being ‘able to lift the bag unaided into the overhead lockers in the aircraft cabin.’
Malaysian Airlines says that it has developed several codeshares with other Oneworld members, including Cathay Pacific and Royal Jordanian, in advance of it becoming a full member by the end of 2012.