Nov 14th, 2008 by bismut
SUBANG: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) has slashed its fare for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore route for December to RM199 one-way all-inclusive in a bid to retain market share on the sector which opens up to intense competition on Dec 1.
Once controlled by MAS and rival Singapore Airlines (SIA), this has been the most expensive air sector for a 45-minute flight. Fares are as high as RM900 for a return trip.
“We believe in liberalisation but filling up four million seats a year can be very challenging. If we do not do anything we will lose money on the sector,’’ MAS senior sales general manager Datuk Bernard Francis told StarBiz in an interview yesterday.
The sector has been open to competition since early this year but from Dec 1 low-cost carriers plying the route will be allocated additional frequencies. The liberalisation of the KL-Singapore market is part of a larger agenda to free the skies above Asean to facilitate intra-Asean travel.
Other carriers flying the route are AirAsia, JetstarAsia, Tiger Airways and SilkAir.
The fight for market share will be fierce. Tomorrow, MAS kicks off its “One price, all seats, all flights’’ campaign that ends on Dec 24.
It will offer one-way fares of RM199 ex-KL and S$89 ex-Singapore for travel in December. Fares are inclusive of taxes, fuel surcharges and administrative fees.
“We are offering all seats on the aircraft and bookings must be made at least seven days in advance,’’ Francis said.
Francis said MAS made six to eight daily flights or 100 flights per week.
Come Dec 1, SIA and SilkAir will each operate four flights daily, AirAsia will increase its two daily flights to seven, Tiger will offer five flights from one and JetstarAsia, three from one.
Francis said MAS would continue to review the pricing on the sector and make adjustments when necessary.
MAS yesterday also cut fares for 66 domestic and international destinations under its “all-inclusive low fares goes global” campaign. Source – TheStar