cool down mr Tony... cool down ok...
he he he he
taken from The Star Newspaper....
Why now, asks AirAsia boss
KUALA LUMPUR: AirAsia has questioned the timing of the sudden move by the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry to start probing claims that its low-fare advertisements are misleading.
“If there were so many complaints about the fares, why did it take two years to complain?” asked AirAsia chief executive officer Tony Fernandes.
He also said he was upset with the statement by Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry public relations officer Nik Suzana Nik Shapik advising those who felt they had been cheated to register their complaints.
“Our ads are not cheating anyone. The ads clearly state that fares start ‘from RM1.99’ and as long as it’s available or while stocks last,” he said.
Fernandes had called a press conference to rebut claims by the Johor Consumers’ Association (JCA) that its advertisements were misleading.
Subsequently, Culture, Arts and Tourism Minister Datuk Paduka Abdul Kadir Sheikh Fadzir said the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry should investigate the claims and that AirAsia rectify whatever shortcoming.
Fernandes explained that low fares were subject to demand and supply which was regulated by computer.
“If demand is low, there would be more tickets with lower fares.
“How can anyone think they can have all flight seats at RM1.99 each?” he said.
Fernandes said he had received hundreds of letters and phone messages from passengers praising the airline for the lower fares.
He also said AirAsia was bringing in foreign tourists and had so far given three million people an opportunity to fly.
“Singaporeans make up 50% of passenger load for flights from Johor Baru to Langkawi and 60% of passengers on the Miri to KL flight are Bruneians.
“How can they say we’re not doing anything for tourism? I’m surprised that the Johor Consumers’ Association (JCA) is complaining about us, “ he said, adding that passengers could now fly from Johor Baru to Miri after waiting 22 years.
Fernandes, in defending its low-fare advertisements, said the advertisements used the same concept practised for many years by low-fare airlines worldwide such as RyanAir and Southwest Airlines.
“These airlines abide by stricter Western regulations. Don’t kill our spirit just because we’re using an innovative and different approach,” he said.
Fernandes said AirAsia was recently named Asia Pacific Airline of the Year together with Australia’s Virgin Blue for having the greatest impact on the development of the Asia Pacific airline industry.
“It shows that Malaysia can have the best. We are good like anyone else, if not better,” he said.
Fernandes said he would be meeting Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry’s deputy director of operations (enforcement) on Tuesday to discuss the matter.
He said it was ultimately the customer’s choice to decide if they want to fly.
“No one is forced to fly. If they feel the fare is not right, they can choose not to fly,” he added.