Kuala Lumpur International Airport

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Kuala Lumpur International Airport
Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur International Airport Logo.svg
KLIA MTB&Tower.jpg
The KLIA control tower and part of the airport
Airport type Public
Owner Government of Malaysia
Operator Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad
Serves Klang Valley
Location Sepang, Selangor, Malaysia
Hub for
Time zone MST (UTC+08:00)
Elevation AMSL 70 ft / 21 m
Coordinates 02°44′36″N 101°41′53″E / 2.74333°N 101.69806°E / 2.74333; 101.69806Coordinates: 02°44′36″N 101°41′53″E / 2.74333°N 101.69806°E / 2.74333; 101.69806
Website www.klia.com.my
WMKK is located in Peninsular Malaysia
Location in Peninsular Malaysia
Direction Length Surface
m ft
14L/32R 4,019 13,186 Concrete
14R/32L 4,000 13,123 Concrete
Statistics (2013)
Passenger movements 47,498,157
Airfreight movements in tonnes 680,982
Aircraft Fmovements 325,537
Source: AIP Malaysia[1]

Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) (IATA: KULICAO: WMKK) is Malaysia's main international airport and one of the major airports of South East Asia. Built at a cost of US$3.5 billion[2] in Sepang district of Selangor, it is located approximately 45 kilometres (28 mi) from Kuala Lumpur city centre and serves the Greater Klang Valley conurbation.

The airport can currently handle 40 million passengers and 1.2 million tonnes of cargo a year. In 2010, it handled 34,087,636 passengers; in 2011 it handled 669,849 metric tonnes of cargo. It was ranked the 9th busiest airport in the world by international passenger traffic, and is the 4th busiest international airport in Asia. It was ranked the 19th busiest airport by cargo traffic in 2010.[3]

The airport is operated by Malaysia Airports (MAHB) Sepang Sdn Bhd and is the major hub of Malaysia Airlines, MASkargo, AirAsia, AirAsia X, Malindo Air and Department of Civil Aviation (DCA).



KLIA main entrance from the side
KLIA Main terminal architecture

The ground breaking ceremony for Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) took place on 1 June 1993[citation needed] when the government decided that the existing Kuala Lumpur International Airport, officially then known as Subang International Airport (now Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport) could not handle future demand. It was created as part of the Multimedia Super Corridor a grand development plan for the nation.

Upon KLIA's completion, Subang International Airport's Terminal 1 building was demolished. Malaysia Airports agreed to redevelop the remaining Terminal 3 to create Subang International Airport a specialist airport for turboprop and charter planes surrounded by a residential area and a business park.

The IATA airport code KUL was inherited from Subang International Airport, which currently handles only turboprop aircraft, general aviation and military aircraft. Subsequently, Subang International Airport's IATA code was changed to SZB.

Current site[edit]

The airport's site spans 100 square kilometres (39 sq mi) 2,[2] of former agricultural land and is one of the world's largest airport sites. An ambitious three-phase development plan anticipates KLIA to have five runways and two terminals each with two satellite terminals.[4] Phase One involved the construction of the main terminal and one satellite terminal, giving a capacity of 25 million passengers, and two full service runways. The Phase One airport had sixty contact piers, twenty remote parking bays with eighty aircraft parking positions, four maintenance hangars and fire stations. Phase Two, designed to increase capacity to 35 million passengers per year is largely complete. Phase Three is anticipated to increase capacity to 100 million passengers per year.[4]

Grand opening[edit]

Kuala Lumpur International Airport was officially inaugurated by the 10th Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Tuanku Ja'afar of Negeri Sembilan, on 27 June 1998 at 20:30 MST, a week ahead of Hong Kong International Airport and in time for the 1998 Commonwealth Games. The first domestic arrival was Malaysia Airlines flight MH1263 from Kuantan (Kuantan Airport) at 07:10 MST. The first international arrival was Malaysia Airlines flight MH188 from Malé International Airport at 07:30 MST. The first domestic departure was Malaysia Airlines flight MH1432 to Langkawi (Langkawi International Airport) at 07:20 MST; the first international departure was Malaysia Airlines flight MH84 to Beijing (Beijing Capital International Airport) at 09:00 MST.[5]


Inside the main terminal building.
The Jungle boardwalk, a recreational walk path located at the centre core of the KLIA satellite terminal.

The inauguration of the airport was marked with problems. Aerobridge and bay allocation systems broke down, queues built up throughout the airport and baggage handling broke down. Bags were lost and there were waits of over five hours.[6] Most of these issues were remedied eventually, though baggage handling system was plagued with problems until it was put up for a complete replacement tender in 2007.

The airport suffered greatly reduced traffic with the general reduction in economic activity brought about by the East Asian financial crisis, SARS, bird flu epidemic (Avian flu), the global financial crisis and the swine flu pandemic. 1998 saw a reduction of passenger numbers as some airlines, including All Nippon Airways, British Airways, Lufthansa (later reinstated) and Northwest Airlines, terminated their loss making services to KLIA. KLIA's first full year of operations in 1999, in its Phase One manifestation (capacity of 25 million passengers per year), saw only 13.2 million passengers.[7] Passenger numbers eventually increased to 21.1 million in 2004 and 23.2 million in 2005 — though short of the originally estimated 25 million passengers per year by 2003.


Kuala Lumpur International Airport has two parallel runways, located 2 kilometers from each other, which are designed for simultaneous take-offs and landings. The first is 4,000 m × 60 m (13,123 ft × 197 ft). The second runway is 4,019 m × 60 m (13,186 ft × 197 ft).

Operations and infrastructure[edit]

Passenger terminal buildings
Totals (current) (After LCCT Relocation)
Floor area 514,694 m2 692,627 m²
Handling capacity 40 million passengers 70 million passengers
Parking bays 46 (aerobridge)
68 (contact)
21 (remote)
LCCT Relocation Plan yet to be unveiled
Main Terminal Building 1 & Contact Pier
Opened 27 June 1998 (operational)
Floor area 336,000 m2
Handling capacity 5 million passengers per annum
Parking bays 20 (aerobridge)
23 (remote)
Satellite Terminal A
Opened 27 June 1998 (operational)
Floor area 143,404 m2
Handling capacity 20 million passengers per annum
Parking bays 26 (aerobridge)
15 (remote)
Low Cost Carrier Terminal
Opened 23 March 2006 (operational)
Floor area 35,290 m2
Handling capacity 15 million
Parking bays 30
Opening on 2 May 2014
Floor area 242,000 m2
Handling capacity 45 million
Parking bays 68
Bunga Raya Complex
Opened 27 June 1998 (official)
Floor area
Handling capacity
Parking bays 1

KLIA features a number of modern design features that assist in efficient operation of the airport. It is one of the first Asia Pacific airports to become 100% Bar Coded Boarding Pass capable.[9] AirAsia, a Malaysian passenger airline;[10] MASkargo, a cargo airline;[11] and Malaysia Airports, the Malaysian Airports operator and manager; are headquartered on the property of KLIA.[12] Malaysia Airlines operates its Flight Management Building at KLIA.[13]


The Passenger Terminal Complex (PTC) was built with an emphasis on allowing natural light into the building. Thus, there is a huge expanse of glass throughout the building, and the spectacular roof has cut-outs for natural light to filter in. The PTC comprises three buildings – the Main Terminal Building, the Satellite Building and the Contact Pier. Besides the 80-room hotel at the Satellite Building, there is a 450-room 5-star Pan Pacific KLIA hotel a 10-minute (indoor) walk away. Shopping spots are available in an area encompassing 85,000 square metres. Currently, the retail space at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport stands at 67,000 square metres (720,000 sq ft). The airport operator plans to increase the retail space to 105,300 square metres (1,133,000 sq ft), an 62.2% increase in retail space.[citation needed]

As there are international flights operating out from the airport, therefore terminals of the airport are equipped with immigration processing facilities and security scanning for all passengers including domestic passengers. The Satellite terminal handles most of the international flights, while the main terminal building's contact pier handles domestic traffic, regional international flights and international flights routed to other hubs within Malaysia. Malaysia Airlines operate from both terminals, where main terminal building's contact pier is their preferred terminal for domestic flights. Conversely, low cost carriers such as AirAsia Group of Airlines, Tigerairand Cebu Pacific operates domestic and international flights out of the low cost carrier terminal.[14]

The initial passenger growth was below average due to Asian Financial Crisis and the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic in 2003 and the airport failed to reach its target capacity of 25 million passengers per annum (before the inclusion of low cost carrier terminal) by 2004. However, the recovery of Malaysia's economy boosted Kuala Lumpur International Airport's passenger movements, and the airport saw significant growth in traffic, hitting the 25 million passenger mark in 2007. In January 2008, the airport saw a growth of 8.3% in aircraft movements and 7.7% in passenger traffic to 2.17 million in January 2008 from 2.02 million in the same period last year.[15]

Main terminal building and contact pier[edit]

Malaysia Airlines at Contact Pier

The Main terminal building or Terminal 1 is located in between the two runways. The floor area of the terminal covers 390,000 m2 (4,200,000 sq ft) and the building consists of 39 square roof units, which enables future expansion of the building. There are a total of 216 check-in counters, located in 6 different islands, identified by the letters A – M (excluding I). Multi check-in services are available, designed for the use of all passengers arriving, departing or in transit. On 2 February 2007, Malaysia Airports introduces 12 integrated self check-in kiosks (CUSS) for passengers. The first airline to use that system is KLM.[16] A further 24 kiosks will be added later by the airport operator[17][18]

The contact pier is the rectangular-shaped terminal that is connected to the Main Terminal Building. It serves as the domestic terminal for Malaysia Airlines. Some international flights are handled there as well. Previously it used to cater to low-cost carriers' passengers. At the north side of the pier, it can only accommodate narrow-bodied aircraft. In contrast, the south side of the contact pier can accommodate Boeing 737 and Boeing 747 or similar sized aircraft.[citation needed]

There were plans to increase and maximize the Main Terminal Building's and Contact Pier's retail area however, the plan was postponed due to Visit Malaysia Year 2007.[19]

The gates in Main Terminal Building's contact pier has alphabet prefix of A and B for domestic flights, which is accessible from domestic departures on Level 3 where passengers descend after security check, and G and H for international flights. Basically Gates G & H are sharing the same boarding lounge as Gates A & B, where after boarding and secondary security check (before boarding aircraft)passengers descend into the same boarding lounge with the doors for "A & B" on level 3 sealed off for international flights. For domestic flights, the stairs to access "G & H" are sealed off instead.

Satellite terminal A[edit]

Interior of the Satellite Terminal

The 176,000 square metres (1,890,000 sq ft) satellite building accommodates international flights departing and arriving at KLIA. Passengers have to travel to the satellite building via the Aerotrain. There is a wide array of duty-free shops and prestige brand boutiques in the satellite building. This includes international brands such as Burberry, Harrods, Montblanc, Salvatore Ferragamo and recently, Mango has opened its first boutique at an airport in the Asian region.[citation needed] Among all international labels available within the terminal, some boutiques such as Harrods are only available in the airport. A number of restaurants and international airlines' lounges are available as well as an Airside Transit Hotel.

Within the terminal, wireless internet (Wifi) is provided free of charge. The terminal also has prayer rooms, showers and massage service. Various lounge areas are provided, some including children's play areas and movie lounge, broadcasting movie and sport channels.[20] The terminal also features a natural rainforest in the middle of the terminal, exhibiting the Malaysian forests.

Palm trees in the satellite building
Satellite building near the Aerotrain

Under Malaysia Airports Berhad retail optimisation plan, the retail space in satellite terminal A will be further optimized to increase its revenue derived from commercial space rental and a percentage of sale receipts to 50% by year 2010 which currently stands at 35%. Some notable improvements that will be seen after the refurbishments will be the Jungle Boardwalk which will be the first of its kind in the world and larger mezzanine floor to accommodate F&B outlets and viewing galleries.[21]

The gates in Satellite Terminal A have the prefix C.The Satellite A terminal has 27 boarding gates altogether.

Low cost carrier terminal (LCCT)[edit]

KLIA Low Cost Carrier Terminal
international departure waiting lounge in LCCT before the 2008 expansion

The Low cost carrier terminal (LCCT) was opened at Kuala Lumpur International Airport to cater for the growing number of users of low cost airlines, especially the passengers of Malaysia's "no-frills" airline, AirAsia.

Prior to its operation as a terminal for low cost airlines, the LCCT was used for cargo purposes.

The 36,000 square metres (390,000 sq ft) terminal is designed and built to suit the low cost carrier business model that requires only basic terminal amenities. As requested by the low cost airline, the terminal does not provide aerobridges. Nor are there transfer facilities like those found at the main terminal. As there is no rail link with the main terminal, passengers who need to make transfers need to clear immigration, collect their luggage, clear customs, make their way to the main terminal and re-checkin with their respective airline.

LCCT is located on the opposite side of the apron from the Main Terminal Building, near the air cargo area. LCCT is about 2 km from the Main Terminal Building in direct distance, but by road is about 16 km.

The current Low Cost Carrier Terminal is a temporary solution for the increasing demand of no-frills airline passengers. Therefore, Malaysia Airports Holding Berhad has plans to build a new permanent LCC terminal which can accommodate 45 million passengers per year.[22] In the meantime, the airport operator decided to expand the current terminal to keep up with the increasing demand. The new arrival hall was first open on 15 December 2008.[23] This airport was the first airport to have separation between normal carriers and low cost carrier.

The terminal is due to be replaced by a new low cost carrier terminal, klia2, whose opening has been postponed several times due to various reasons. The current expected opening date for KLIA2 is May 2014 but in December 2013, there were reports that the official opening date was likely to be postponed yet again, despite construction already nearing completion.[24]

The gates in LCCT have letter prefix of P for domestic departures and T for international departures. However this is not always followed depending on aircraft parking position and there are temporary immigration booths in domestic departure gates.

KL City Air Terminal[edit]

KL City Air Terminal, sometimes known as Kuala Lumpur City Air Terminal or KL CAT located at KL Sentral is a virtual extension of KL International Airport where city check-in services are provided. KL City Air Terminal is recognized by International Air Transport Association which carries IATA designation XKL. Currently there are only 5 airlines providing city check-in services, they are Cathay Pacific, Emirates Airline, Etihad Airways, Malaysia Airlines and Royal Brunei Airlines.[25] However, the situation is due to be changed as 10 SITA's AirportConnect CUTE (Common Use Terminal Equipment) were installed on 10 check-in desks in KL CAT that enables all airlines to offer city check-in service for their passengers.[26] Apart from providing check-in services, the virtual terminal operator, Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd which operates KLIA Express is planning to roll out baggage check-out service in January 2008 whereby passengers only collect their baggage and declare taxable items in Kuala Lumpur City Air Terminal.[27]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

A Malaysia Airlines Airbus A380 taxiing out for departure
An Emirates A380 approaching Kuala Lumpur International Airport
KLM Boeing 747-400 getting airborne from Kuala Lumpur International Airport
A Lufthansa Airbus A340-600 on final approach to KLIA
A SriLankan Airlines Airbus A340-300 upon arrival to Kuala Lumpur International Airport
Vietnam Airlines Airbus A321-300 leaving Kuala Lumpur International Airport
An Uzbekistan Airways Airbus A310-200 preparing for departure


Airlines Destinations Terminal
Air Astana Almaty Satellite
Air France Paris-Charles de Gaulle Satellite
Air India Express Chennai Satellite
Air Mauritius MauritiusNote 1 Satellite
AirAsia Alor Setar, Balikpapan, Banda Aceh, Bandar Seri Begawan, Bandung, Bangkok-Don Mueang, Bangalore, Bintulu, Chiang Mai, Chennai, Denpasar, Guangzhou, Guilin, Hanoi, Hat Yai, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta, Johor Bahru, Kalibo (begins 18 April 2014),[28][29] Kochi, Kolkata, Kota Bharu, Kota Kinabalu, Krabi, Kuala Terengganu, Kuching, Kunming, Labuan, Langkawi, Lombok, Macau, Makassar, Medan, Miri, Nanning, Padang, Palembang, Pekanbaru, Penang, Phnom Penh, Phuket, Sandakan, Semarang, Shenzhen, Sibu, Siem Reap, Singapore, Solo, Surabaya, Surat Thani, Tawau, Tiruchirapalli, Vientiane, Yangon, Yogyakarta LCCT
AirAsia X Adelaide, Beijing-Capital, Busan, Chengdu, Colombo, Gold Coast, Hangzhou, Jeddah, Kathmandu, Melbourne, Nagoya-Centrair ,[30] Osaka-Kansai, Perth, Seoul-Incheon, Shanghai-Pudong, Sydney, Taipei-Taoyuan, Tehran-Imam Khomeini, Tokyo-Haneda, Xi'an (begins 2 July 2014)[31] LCCT
AirAsia Zest Manila LCCT
Bangkok Airways Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Koh Samui Satellite
Biman Bangladesh Airlines Dhaka Satellite
Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Satellite
Cebu Pacific Manila LCCT
China Airlines Taipei-Taoyuan Satellite
China Eastern Airlines Shanghai-Pudong Satellite
China Southern Airlines Guangzhou Satellite
EgyptAir Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Cairo Satellite
Emirates Dubai-International, Melbourne Satellite
Ethiopian Airlines Addis Ababa, Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi Satelitte
Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Satellite
EVA Air Taipei-Taoyuan Satellite
Flynas Jeddah Satellite
Garuda Indonesia Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta Satellite
Indonesia AirAsia Bandung, Denpasar, Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta, Medan, Surabaya LCCT
Iran Air Tehran-Imam Khomeini Satellite
Iraqi Airways Baghdad Satellite
Japan Airlines Tokyo-Narita Satellite
Jetstar Asia Airways Singapore Satellite
KLM Amsterdam, Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta Satellite
Korean Air Seoul-Incheon Satellite
Kuwait Airways Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta, Kuwait Satellite
Lion Air Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta Satellite
Lufthansa FrankfurtNote 2 Satellite
Mahan Air Tehran-Imam Khomeini Satellite
Malaysia Airlines Alor Star, Bintulu, Johor Bahru, Kota Bharu, Kota Kinabalu, Kuantan, Kuala Terengganu, Kuching, Labuan, Langkawi, Miri, Penang, Sandakan, Sibu, Tawau Main (Gates A-B)
Malaysia Airlines Adelaide, Amsterdam, Auckland, Beijing-Capital, Brisbane, Delhi, Denpasar, Dhaka, Dubai-International, Dubai-World Central (from 1 May to 21 July 2014),[32] Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Istanbul-Atatürk, Jeddah, London-Heathrow, Los Angeles (ends 30 April 2014),[33] Melbourne, Mumbai, Osaka-Kansai, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Perth, Seoul-Incheon, Shanghai-Pudong, Sydney, Tokyo-Narita Satellite (Gates C)
Malaysia Airlines Bandar Seri Begawan, Bangalore, Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Chennai, Colombo, Darwin, Guangzhou, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hyderabad, Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta, Kathmandu, Kochi, Kunming, Krabi, Malé, Manila, Medan, Phnom Penh, Phuket, Siem Reap, Singapore, Taipei-Taoyuan, Yangon, Xiamen Note 3 Main (Gates G-H)
Malindo Air Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Langkawi, Penang, Sibu Main (Gates A-B)
Malindo Air Ahmebadad ,[34] Bangkok-Don Mueang (begins 24 April 2014),[35] Chittagong, Delhi, Denpasar, Dhaka, Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta, Kochi (begins 24 April 2014),[36] Mumbai ,[37] Tiruchirapalli Main (Gates G-H)
Myanmar Airways International Yangon Satellite
Nepal Airlines Kathmandu Satellite
Oman Air Muscat Satellite
Pakistan International Airlines Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar Satellite
Qatar Airways Doha, Phuket Satellite
Regent Airways Dhaka Satellite
Royal Brunei Airlines Bandar Seri Begawan Satellite
Royal Jordanian Amman-Queen Alia, Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi Satellite
Saudia Jeddah, Medina, Riyadh Satellite
SilkAir Singapore Satellite
Singapore Airlines Singapore Satellite
SriLankan Airlines Colombo Satellite
Thai AirAsia Bangkok-Don Mueang LCCT
Thai Airways International Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi Satellite
Thai Lion Air Bangkok-Don Mueang Satellite
Tigerair Singapore LCCT
Turkish Airlines Istanbul-Atatürk Satellite
United Airways Dhaka Satellite
Uzbekistan Airways Tashkent Satellite
Vietnam Airlines Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City Satellite
Xiamen Airlines Fuzhou, Xiamen Satellite
Yemenia Dubai, Jakarta-Soekarno Hatta, Sana'a Satellite

^Note 1 Air Mauritius does not have traffic rights to transport passengers solely between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.

^Note 2 Lufthansa does not have traffic rights to transport passengers solely between Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta.

^Note 3 Malaysia Airlines regional/international flights using narrow body aircraft depart from Main Terminal Gates G/H which is actually the upper floor of Gates A/B after immigration. However this was revised when equipment in different dates are varies and change by time to time.


Airlines Destinations
Cargolux Baku, Chennai, Luxembourg, Singapore
China Airlines Cargo Chennai, Luxembourg, Penang, Taipei-Taoyuan
FedEx Express Cebu, Guangzhou, Penang, Singapore, Tokyo-Narita
Hong Kong Airlines Hong Kong
Korean Air Cargo Seoul-Incheon, Penang
MASkargo Amsterdam, Baku, Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Chennai, Dubai-Al Maktoum, Frankfurt, Guangzhou, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Jakarta-Soekarno-Hatta, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Labuan, Manila, Medan, Penang, Shanghai-Pudong, Sydney, Taipei-Taoyuan, Tokyo-Narita [38]
Republic Express Airlines Jakarta-Soekarno-Hatta
Transmile Air Services Anchorage, Bangalore, Chennai, Hong Kong, Jakarta-Soekarno-Hatta, Johor Bahru, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Luik, Malmo, Manila, Medan, Mumbai, Nagoya, Osaka-Kansai, Penang, Riverside, Shanghai-Pudong, Shenzhen, Singapore, Tokyo-Narita, Taipei-Taoyuan
UPS Airlines Shenzhen, Osaka, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Seoul, Taipei, Manila, Bangkok, Mumbai, Anchorage, Los Angeles, Louisville, Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Miami, New York, Vancouver, Toronto


Annual passenger numbers[edit]

Operational statistics of Kuala Lumpur International Airport[39]
Year Passenger movements Aircraft movements Cargo handled (tonnes)
1998 6,524,405 64,123 156,641
1999 13,172,635 116,589 417,068
2000 14,732,876 109,925 510,594
2001 14,538,831 113,590 440,864
2002 16,398,230 127,952 527,124
2003 17,454,564 139,590 586,195
2004 21,058,572 165,115 651,747
2005 23,213,926 182,537 653,654
2006 24,129,748 183,869 672,888
2007 26,453,379 193,710 644,100
2008 27,529,355 211,228 649,077
2009 29,682,093 226,751 584,559
2010 34,087,636 245,650 674,902
2011 37,704,510 269,509 669,849
2012 39,887,866 283,352 673,107
2013 47,498,157 325,537 680,982

Busiest International Routes[edit]

Busiest international routes to and from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (2013)[40]
Rank Airport Passengers handled % Change
2012 / 13
1 Flag of Singapore.svg Singapore 3,437,781 Increase 10.5
2 Flag of Indonesia.svg Jakarta-Soekarno-Hatta 2,029,119 Increase 10.1
3 Flag of Hong Kong.svg Hong Kong 1,515,265 Increase 15.8
4 Flag of Thailand.svg Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi 1,030,671 Decrease 29.1
5 Flag of Thailand.svg Bangkok-Don Mueang 975,896 Increase 390.2
6 Flag of Indonesia.svg Denpasar 958,957 Increase 22.5
7 Flag of Vietnam.svg Ho Chi Minh City 879,394 Increase 19.9
8 Flag of the Republic of China.svg Taipei-Taoyuan 837,890 Increase 20.5
9 Flag of Australia.svg Melbourne 793,506 Increase 24.9
10 Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg Dubai 771,960 Increase 22.3
11 Flag of Thailand.svg Phuket 731,490 Increase 27.2
12 Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Guangzhou 693,201 Increase 13.9
13 Flag of Australia.svg Sydney 661,844 Increase 30.6
14 Flag of Indonesia.svg Surabaya 620,743 Increase 19.1
15 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg London-Heathrow 619,849 Increase 27.4
16 Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai-Pudong 613,309 Increase 60.9
17 Flag of the Philippines.svg Manila 598,644 Increase 41.2
18 Flag of Bangladesh.svg Dhaka 584,428 Increase 31.0
19 Flag of South Korea.svg Seoul-Incheon 581,770 Increase 2.8
20 Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Beijing-Capital 544,999 Increase 39.9
21 Flag of Australia.svg Perth 498,663 Increase 6.9
22 Flag of India.svg Chennai 492,277 Increase 2.9
23 Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg Jeddah 442,291 Increase 42.0
24 Flag of the Netherlands.svg Amsterdam 396,424 Increase 1.7
25 Flag of Qatar.svg Doha 395,292 Increase 10.2
26 Flag of Sri Lanka.svg Colombo 377,048 Decrease 6.5
27 Flag of Japan.svg Tokyo-Narita 375,920 Increase 18.1
28 Flag of Indonesia.svg Bandung 360,617 Increase 7.4
29 Flag of Indonesia.svg Medan-Polonia 359,704 Decrease 38.6
30 Flag of Brunei.svg Bandar Seri Begawan 358,119 Increase 15.3
31 Flag of France.svg Paris-Charles de Gaulle 344,910 Increase 103.3
32 Flag of Vietnam.svg Hanoi 341,792 Increase 21.8
33 Flag of Nepal.svg Kathmandu 324,993 Increase 106.8
34 Flag of Indonesia.svg Medan 317,185 -
35 Flag of Cambodia.svg Phnom Penh 316,738 Increase 8.0
36 Flag of Myanmar.svg Yangon 315,527 Increase 25.9
37 Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg Abu Dhabi 297,839 Increase 22.3
38 Flag of Japan.svg Osaka-Kansai 294,527 Increase 27.6
39 Flag of Macau.svg Macau 288,536 Decrease 0.6
40 Flag of India.svg Delhi 270,722 Decrease 5.2
41 Flag of India.svg Mumbai 239,707 Increase 21.0
42 Flag of Japan.svg Tokyo-Haneda 229,957 Increase 30.8
43 Flag of India.svg Tiruchirappalli 219,713 Increase 74.4
44 Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shenzhen 203,781 Increase 1.8
45 Flag of Thailand.svg Krabi 195,997 Increase 96.7
46 Flag of India.svg Bangalore 188,778 Increase 23.0
47 Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Chengdu 183,737 Increase 36.6
48 Flag of Australia.svg Adelaide 179,618 Increase 27.3
49 Flag of Indonesia.svg Yogyakarta 178,640 Increase 60.9
50 Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Hangzhou 176,066 Decrease 19.2

Ground transportation[edit]

Inter-terminal transportation[edit]

Aerotrain station in Satellite Building

The main terminal and its satellite are well connected by an automated people mover (called Aerotrain). Each 250-person capacity train can transport 3,000 passengers per hour in each direction at up to 56 km/h (35 mph). These three-car driverless trains run every five minutes on elevated rail and under the taxiways. The journey takes under two minutes. The Aerotrain is completely automated and shuttles passengers between the main terminal building and satellite building. There are many benefits that the Aerotrain offers such as the short journey time, simplicity and fail-safe operation, and resistance against breakdown. The train system uses pneumatic rubber-typed wheels to provide comfort for the passengers riding on the train. The Tracked Transit System (TTS) connects to two stations. One station is in the center of the contact pier’s International level and one that is close to the center of the satellite terminal’s departure/arrival level. The TTS transports passengers over an elevated guideway that is 4,219 feet. It travels under the taxiways between the main terminal and satellite buildings. The Aerotrain operates between three to five-minute intervals between terminal buildings. The total round trip time takes five minutes and five seconds with a maximum speed of 35 miles per hour. There are two three-car trains that are able to handle 5,805 passengers per hour each direction. Each train-car has a maximum capacity of 83 passengers. Automatic train control manages the operation of the entire Aerotrain system. They are in control of vehicle speeds, headways, stops and door opening in stations. They are able to integrate all functions that enhance the reliability and performance of the systems[41]

Between LCCT (Low Cost Carrier Terminal) to KLIA (Main Terminal Building)[edit]

There is no "air-side" transit between the LCCT and the Main Terminal Building. All passengers have to clear Immigration and Customs upon arrival at the LCCT before proceeding to the Main Terminal Building to re-check in for flights and vice versa.

This bus awaits passengers at the 3rd taxi lane from the terminal, not with the other buses.

External connections[edit]


Main articles: KLIA Express, KLIA Transit, KLIA ERL station, KL Sentral

Kuala Lumpur International Airport is served by two direct rail services, namely KLIA Express and KLIA Transit. The KLIA Express provides a non-stop express train service to/from KL City Air Terminal (KL CAT) which has an IATA designation XKL. It is a part of KL Sentral transportation hub in Kuala Lumpur. The non-stop trip between KL Sentral and KLIA is 57 kilometers long and the journey takes exactly 28 minutes. Passengers who want to use this service and are departing from Kuala Lumpur International Airport with the following airlines can use the in-city check-in facilities installed at KL City Air Terminal (KL CAT), provided that the check-in process is done at least 2 hours before flight departure time.

Whereas, KLIA Transit provides a commuter train service between KL Sentral and the Kuala Lumpur International Airport ERL station. This service shares the same tracks with KLIA Express but making stops at three intermediate stations along the journey namely Bandar Tasik Selatan station, Putrajaya/Cyberjaya ERL station and Salak Tinggi ERL station. Check-in facilities are not available at all KLIA Transit stations. Passengers to/from Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) can use KLIA Transit service by boarding the provided shuttle bus at Salak Tinggi ERL station.

Taxis and limousine[edit]

Airport taxis or airport limousines are provided by Airport Limo. The taxis and limousines are readily available at the Taxi and Limousine counters. They run from airport itself to destinations in Klang Valley and Greater Klang Valley. The fares are to be paid at the counter and are charged according to the destinations' zone. A surcharge is applied for services between 12 am to 5 am


Both public and private buses connect KLIA to several points in Kuala Lumpur and beyond.

Expansion and developments[edit]


KLIA Aeropolis Masterplan

Under the new Kuala Lumpur International Airport Masterplan, a new runway and a new satellite building will be constructed to accommodate the increasing number of passengers. The airport Phase 2 development plan is to handle 40 million (Increase5 Million) passengers per year by 2008 with the expansion of low cost carrier terminal. For phase 3, the airport will expand to handle 75 million (Increase35 million) passengers per annum with the construction of a new satellite terminal and replacement of current low cost carrier terminal with a new low cost carrier terminal that will be capable of handling 30 million passengers alone. Under Phase 4, the airport will be capable to handle 97.5 million passengers per annum by 2020.[citation needed]

With the slight modification of the masterplan, the future Terminal 2's satellite terminal will be combined into one satellite terminal. The expansion of Terminal 2's satellite terminal will be exactly the same as Terminal 1's satellite terminal, where initially the satellite terminal will have four arms, and another four arms when the terminal reached its capacity. There is sufficient land and capacity to develop facilities to handle up to 97.5 million passengers a year, four runways by the year 2020 and two mega-terminals, each linked with satellite terminals.[4] The airport's vicinity will include hiking trails for jet-lagged travelers, golf courses, convention center, a theme park, a shopping center, hotels, and a wetlands nature preserve. Sepang International Circuit, which hosts Formula One, A1 Grand Prix, Super GT, IndyCar Series and MotoGP races, is also nearby. There has also been a proposal for a monorail link to the F1 circuit. The development plan is due to be ready by April 2008.[42]

Temporary Low Cost Carrier Terminal[edit]

With an increasing number of passengers using the 'Low Cost Carrier Terminal '(LCCT), MAHB approved an expansion beginning early 2007 to accommodate more passengers as the current LCCT is nearly at full capacity. The expansion of LCCT also shows the support for launch of Malaysia's first long haul low cost carrier, AirAsia X by making the terminal able to accommodate wide-bodied aircraft that are used by AirAsia X[43] However, the Low Cost Carrier Terminal is a temporary solution for budget travellers, MAHB submitted a proposal to the Transport Ministry to build a new, permanent LCC hub in between the main terminal building and satellite building A to replace the present Low Cost Carrier terminal.[44]

The airport operator has announced that the construction works for the extension of LCCT will begin in March 2008 and expected to complete by December 2008. The capacity for the LCCT will increase from 10 million passengers a year to 15 million passengers a year. A proposal for a more permanent building to house a new LCCT has been submitted and expected to have a capacity for 30 million passengers a year. It is also expected that the new LCCT will be completed by April 2012.[45] It is expected that the current LCCT will be converted into a cargo hub once the new terminal is completed.[46] The RM124 million LCCT expansion project tender was won by Fajarbaru Builder Group Bhd and construction work is expected to begin March 2008.[47] The new international arrival hall was opened on 15 December 2008 with expectation that the rest of the wing will be fully operational by March 2009.[23] The international departure hall was finally open on 18 March 2009 which expanded the handling capacity from 600 passengers at one time to 3200 passengers.[48]


Artist's impression of 'KLIA 2', the new KLIA expansion that set to replace the current Low cost carrier terminal.

KLIA2 is the latest extension of KLIA and will replace the current low cost carrier terminal. Despite original plans to locate the new terminal north of the main KLIA terminal (KLIA North) it is currently under construction at KLIA West.[49] Completion of the terminal has been revised four times, with the original date set at April 2010.[50] The third opening date was announced by Malaysian Prime Minister, Najib Razak, who requested the new terminal be opened on June 28, 2013 to coincide with the opening date of the main terminal, June 28, 1998.[51] The current opening date for KLIA2 is set at May 2, 2014, but as at December 2013 press reported that the opening is likely to be delayed yet again, despite construction nearing completion.[52]

When the terminal is completed KLIA2 will be the largest low cost carrier terminal in the South East Asian region with a total area of 257,000 square meters. There will be a total of 68 aircraft parking bays with departure gates for each parking bay, allowing the new terminal to cater up to 35 million passengers annually. There will also be a third runaway which is located 2.2 km from the second runaway.[53] An extension of the Express Rail Link to klia2 is under construction and is expected to open at the same time as the terminal. It involves a 2.14 km line extension.[54]

On 15 July 2010, it was announced that Bina Puri with partner UEM Construction has won the tender to build the terminal for MYR 997.23 million. Construction works is expected to complete within 20 months.[55]

A380 Upgrades[edit]

The operator of Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Malaysia Airports Holding Berhad, had spent about RM135 million (approx US$39 million) to upgrade facilities at the KL International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang to accommodate the Airbus A380. Upgrading works started on 3 April 2006, and was completed by 28 May 2007. Works include the provision of shoulders on both sides of the two existing runways of 15 meters as well as the taxiways, building additional aerobridges at the three departure halls, namely C17, C27 and C37, and enhancing the mezzanine lounges for upper deck passengers of the aircraft at the departure halls. Emirates operates flights to Kuala Lumpur with the Airbus A380 commenced on 1 January 2012.[56] Malaysia Airlines also started its A380 services from Kuala Lumpur to London on 1 July 2012.[56]


Panoramic view of Main Terminal Building and Contact Pier


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