The Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand is considering lowering the ceiling on airfares after three airlines announced a new THB150 surcharge.
Last week, AirAsia, Nok Air and Lion Air implemented a new surcharge on domestic flights, following the fuel tax increase that meant gas will be taxed at THB4 per liter instead of the previous rate of 20 satang per liter. However, it was found that some of these airlines collect more money from customers than they need to.
“Some airlines admitted the increased cost of operation is less than THB150 per customer. We want them to collect a surcharge that reflects the real cost,” said Chula Sukamanop, Director of the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand.
“Actually, the surcharge should even be based on the distance of the flight. For example, they should collect a different surcharge for flights to Chiang Mai and Hat Yai,” he told Post Today.
Despite the new surcharge, the airfares still do not exceed the limit set by the aviation authority. Yet that limit on airfare was set years ago when when fuel prices were USD130 – USD140 per barrel. The prices have dropped to about USD70 recently.
A meeting between the Office of the Consumer Protection Board, the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand and the airlines was held recently to discuss the issue, Post Today reported.
“The increased air fare is an issue the public is interested in at the moment. Many people express their disapproval on social networks and question whether the new fare is fair to consumers or not, so the Office of the Consumer Protection Board has the duty to represent them,” Prasit Chalermwuttisak, Secretary to the Office of the Consumer Protection Board, said.
Guess we will have to wait and see how fair they can make the fares.
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