|KUCHING (Dec 22): Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) has clarified that the widely reported exorbitant RM1,629 Kuala Lumpur-Kuching airfare was actually for a one-stop flight with a layover in Kota Kinabalu.
In a statement, Mavcom said the flight concerned departed at 10.15pm on Dec 14 and the price of RM1,629 was in fact observed one day before departure.
“The flight operated from Kuala Lumpur to Kota Kinabalu and from Kota Kinabalu to Kuching with a nine-hour and 45-minute layover in Kota Kinabalu between the two flights,” said the statement.
It also said their observation had shown there were cheaper direct flights available on the same day at a slightly different time, with flight ticket prices ranging between RM408 and RM519 for all-in fares by the same airline.
Based on an observation conducted on Nov 30, Mavcom said a one-way economy class airfares for direct and non-stop flights from Kuala Lumpur to Kuching on Dec 14 was priced between RM73 and RM254 for AirAsia; between RM210 and RM320 for Batik Air; and between RM408 and RM662 for Malaysia Airlines.
“With the commencement of MYAirline’s services on Dec 1 and added capacity on the Kuala Lumpur to Kuching route by the other carriers, overall seat capacity has reached 86.9 per cent of the pre-Covid-19 pandemic level.”
Moreover, one-way flight frequency has increased up to 22 times per day or 82.1 per cent of the pre-pandemic level, in comparison to up to 27 times per day previously, the statement added.
In a table compiled by Mavcom, it said AirAsia and AirAsia X airlines currently have an average daily seats of 1,812 with 10 flights per day, compared with 2,694 seats before the pandemic and 15 flights per day previously.
For Batik Air airline, there are currently on average daily seats of 365 with two flights per day, compared with 643 average daily seats and four flights per day before the pandemic.
As for Malaysia Airlines, there are presently an average of 1,330 daily seats with seven flights per day, compared with 1,322 average daily seats and eight flights per day before the pandemic.
And for the newly launched MYAirline airline, there are currently on average daily seats of 540 with three flights per day.
In total, for the Kuala Lumpur-Kuching flight route, the spokesperson said there are currently average daily seats of 4,047 with a daily frequency of 22 flights, compared with 4,659 average daily seats and a daily frequency of 27 before the pandemic.
“Mavcom wishes to highlight that airlines practice dynamic pricing based on market demand and supply, and that flight ticket prices would be higher closer to the date of flight departure.”
As such, Mavcom advises consumers to plan their journey ahead, especially during festive seasons, by purchasing their ticket earlier and to check whether the flight is a direct or a one-stop flight to their ultimate destination for cheaper airfare.
Besides, the agency said customers should also look out for lower airfares that could potentially be offered by other airlines operating on the same route.
“Thus, consumers are encouraged to compare prices and conduct sufficient research to make an informed decision and take advantage of promotions provided by the airlines when available,” said the statement.
|The Borneo Post