MAS to review its domestic fares
MAS will re-look its domestic fare structure following public complaints that
they are too pricey. Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy said the
national carrier agreed to reviews its fares for certain sectors and will come
up with a proposal later.
PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia Airlines will look again into its domestic fare structure following public complaints that they are too pricey.
Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy said the national carrier agreed to re-look certain sectors after a two-and-a-half hour meeting at his office here yesterday.
“MAS and the ministry will look into the fares and come up with a proposal later. These involve only certain (domestic) sectors but in comparison, I must say that the fares are still quite competitive.
“Whatever it is, since there is a lot of public concern, MAS is quite prepared to look into it. The airline has agreed to meet up with my officers as early as next week,” he told reporters after a meeting with MAS managing director Idris Jala.
Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Mansor and his deputy Datuk Donald Lim Siang Chai also attended the meeting.
Chan did not specify the sectors affected but said Sabah and Sarawak were definitely involved.
On Tuesday, the airline was criticised by several Members of Parliament who said the national carrier was thinking “profit above service.”
MAS is expected to introduce new fares for three local sectors on Dec 1. They are the Kota Kinabalu-Labuan, Kota Kinabalu-Miri and Kuching-Bintulu routes.
On the MPs’ criticisms, Chan said they must bear in mind that fares in Sabah and Sarawak have not been raised in 14 years.
“I think some of the arguments raised in Parliament that the percentage increase is around 300% are not true. Of course, when there is an upward revision, some of the increases – in terms of percentage – are on the high side. But the actual fares are still quite competitive.”
Besides the domestic and international pricing structure for MAS, the meeting also discussed measures the ministries and MAS could implement to ensure the hosting of Visit Malaysia Year 2007 was carried out smoothly.
Tengku Adnan said the public could have confused MAS’ imposition of fees such as fuel surcharges and cancellation payments for the “high increase” in fares.
“Like all airlines, MAS has different ticket prices for low and peak seasons as well as discounts like supersavers. The pricing structure has always been there, but now, we have asked MAS to brief tour agents and operators all over the world about it.
“This is because for international flights, a study by IATA (International Air Transport Association) showed that MAS is actually cheaper than other airlines,” he said.
When approached, Idris said a press release on domestic fares would be made soon, and stressed that the airline’s fares were still competitive.
Lim said MAS has promised to introduce a number of strategies to help attract 20.1 million visitors to Malaysia next year.
News Source : STAR
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