KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 2 — Ticket prices for flights between Peninsular Malaysia and Sarawak recorded an increase up to six times higher for flight dates between Nov 2 and 8, 202I, the Deepavali festive period, compared with 2019.
Transport Minister Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong said this at the Dewan Rakyat today, adding that the report was based on monitoring by the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) on Oct 27.
For flights from the peninsula to Sabah, he said, Mavcom found that ticket prices were lower between 30 and 63 per cent for flights from Nov 4 to Nov 10, compared with tickets from the year 2019.
“The higher ticket prices to Sarawak is the result of the implementation of flight capacity limits by the state government as part of its effort to curb the spread of COVID-19,” he said.
“Flight frequency to Sarawak dropped 86 per cent compared to before the COVID-19 pandemic while, for Sabah, the frequency of flights decreased by 49 per cent (compared to before the COVID-19 outbreak), ” he said.
Wee was replying to a question from Kelvin Yii Lee Wuen (PH-Bandar Kuching) who asked the ministry to state the steps taken by the government to control the number of flights and the soaring price of plane tickets to Sabah and Sarawak.
He said the Sarawak state government had on Oct 25 agreed to allow an increase in flight frequencies to the state from 89 flights a week to 223 flights a week, without limitations on the number of passengers, effective yesterday.
“This allowance is expected to enable airlines to increase their flight frequency operations and offer cheaper flight tickets.
“Flight ticket prices for routes to Sabah and Sarawak are expected to return to the average level when the number of flights returns to normal,” he said.