The government has said it will look into complaints that local airline AirAsia was charging high prices for some domestic flights, New Straits Times (NST) has reported.
Member of the Parliament of Malaysia for the Kinabatangan constituency Datuk Bung Moktar Radin had earlier accused AirAsia for overpricing flight tickets between Sabah and Kuala Lumpur.
In his complaint, Bung said AirAsia had charged almost RM2,000 for a one-way ticket from Sandakan to Kuala Lumpur, and did not consider if its low-income customers could afford such tickets despite being a budget airline.
A Sabahan himself, Bung said the low-cost carrier also forced passengers who were just 10 minutes late into buying new tickets.
NST and Free Malaysia Today (FMT) reported that Bung also said he had come across some villagers who were in tears as they did not have enough to pay for new tickets.
“The villagers complained that they had no money, so I helped a bit. Luckily, I have (money with me at the time). If you say you’re a budget carrier, then you have to impose a cheap fare,” he was quoted by NST as saying.
Criticising AirAsia for its lack of empathy, he reportedly said: “I don’t know how it can win the prize for best airline in the world year after year.”
Member of the Parliament for the Lenggong constituency Shamsul Anuar Nasarah agreed that AirAsia did not seem to be helping low-income Malaysians to afford air tickets.
But AirAsia was not the only Airline Bung targeted.
He also accused Malaysia Airlines’ MASwings for not providing adequate services between Kota Kinabalu and Sandakan.
“The flights are only at 8am and 5pm. Last time there were flights in the afternoon, now there are none… I don’t know where Malaysia Airlines’ brains are,” he was quoted by FMT as saying.
Member of the Parliament for the Putatan constituency Marcus Majigoh also recalled that he has had to sleep in the airport and buy a new ticket due to the infrequent flights operating between the two airports.