23 November 2017

LETTER | I refer to the news report on Air Asia’s Tony Fernandes expressing his displeasure at an unnamed MP on social media.

Tony Fernandes
Tony Fernandes

Earlier, Kinabatangan MP Bung Moktar Radin had complained that the low-cost carrier had charged a customer about RM2,000 for a one-way flight from Sandakan to Kuala Lumpur.

Following this, the Deputy Transport Minister Ab Aziz Kaprawi told the Dewan Rakyat that the government will act on Bung’s complaint to prevent profiteering.

One’s reputation and image are of utmost importance. I wonder how the complaint would have been handled if the complainant wasn’t Bung?

Kinabatangan MP Bung Moktar Radin
Kinabatangan MP Bung Moktar Radin

I also notice the cunningness in Fernandes’ response to the complaint, because the complaint came from Bung, meaning that the public is less sympathetic.

Bung is known for making outlandish and uncalled for remarks, making genuine and pertinent complaints made by him being interpreted or taken lightly.

As for Fernandes, I think he must first address whether the complaint was true. Is it true that a one-way flight from Sandakan to Kuala Lumpur can cost up to RM2,000, peak time or otherwise? He must first confirm or deny the complaint.

Why bring in the role of AirAsia in providing connectivity to East Malaysia over the past 16 years? I am sure the situation has changed. If there is no AirAsia, other airlines would have filled the void.

Second, I agree that airport charges have some bearing on air fares. But in this case, did it warrant a RM2,000 one-way flight from Sandakan to Kuala Lumpur?

Ministers flying with AirAsia
Ministers flying with AirAsia

Third, why did he bring in other ministers into his arguments with Bung and Ab Aziz Kaprawi? He was praising these ministers for travelling with AirAsia, but was he speaking on their behalf?

Did the ministers really say they were happy with the fares and the services provided by AirAsia?

Low-cost carriers are supposed to provide lower fares out of efficiency and cost savings. Does AirAsia really provide lower fare if we add in all the hidden costs and “discriminatory” pricing?

Even KLIA2 is designed to exploit poorer travellers. One should try filling up a bottle of water from the water fountain after the security check. To fill up one bottle would probably take five minutes because the water is oozing out at glacial pace from the water fountain.

My question is why? Why can’t we fix the water fountain? I sincerely hope this is not a ploy to force travellers to buy water from AirAsia during the flight.

Tony Fernandes should not just complain about airport charges. He should also highlight the lousy services provided by the airport, particularly at KLIA2.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

Original Source: malaysiakini