Budget airlines hike up prices, force clients stranded in flood to pay big for short trips

Are Thailand’s budget airlines taking advantage of customers stranded due to the flood in the south? Some people say that they are.

Nok Air and AirAsia have shown mysteriously high prices over the last several days and they have been accused of taking advantage of customers who have been stranded by the flooding in the southern provinces.

Due to roads being washed out and train service halting, many people that planned to travel after the New Year holiday by road or train have been forced to make other travel arrangements — including very expensive plane tickets.

The two airlines say that they are not using the sad situation to their advantage but that the higher prices are simply due to supply and demand.

They also went on to point out that anyone booking a last-minute ticket, as those stranded by the floods were forced to do, would pay more than someone who had booked in advance, reported Thairath.

Representatives for the airlines also noted that the more people they had demanding the seats, they more they could and would charge.

They went on to defend themselves and their high ticket prices further by explaining that, aside from the flood situation, it’s the time of year when many people are returning from their hometowns after the New Year holiday, another determining factor in the high ticket prices.

The price of a ticket from Surat Thani to Bangkok today costs THB3,263 on Nok Air for the single flight that is still available in the late evening. All flights today on AirAsia for the same route are sold out. On the 16th, the same route on AirAsia is THB790 and on Nok Air, it’s THB927.

Apparently, some customers have asked the government to investigate this possible price gouging situation.


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