The Ministry of Transport (MOT) has asked the Malaysian Aviation Commission (MAVCOM) and airline companies to immediately investigate the increase in airfare prices during festive seasons. Transport minister Dr. Wee Ka Siong revealed that he had conveyed the matter during a special meeting yesterday with the aforementioned parties, along with the involvement of the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM).
He said that both the meeting and investigation resulted from the recent complaints from the public concerning expensive airfare prices for trips from Peninsular Malaysia to Sabah and Sarawak in conjunction with the upcoming Hari Raya celebration. According to Bernama, ticket prices for certain return trips to the East Malaysian states surged over RM2,000 during the period, which is an increase of around 566%.
“MOT is committed and will make every effort to reduce air fares to ease the people’s burden,” said Wee in a statement today. “MOT, through MAVCOM, will inform the public on the outcome of discussions with the airline companies soon.”
Wee revealed that CAAM had approved the extension of operating hours for airport traffic control services for the approaching festive season. It is also assisting airlines in planning for the additional capacity, he added.
Meanwhile, in a statement issued to Bernama yesterday, Malaysia Airlines Bhd said that airline companies had set the price of flight tickets dynamically, which is subject to supply and demand, as well as based on the date, time and availability of seats at a certain timeframe. The company also advised Malaysians to purchase their flights early to avoid being burdened by costly ticket prices caused by the dynamic pricing strategy, especially during festive seasons.