Thursday, September 23, 2010

Phuket's budget airlines under fire; Phuket surf; Gas leak

Phuket NEWS Hound– A daily digest of news about Thailand from around the world, compiled by Gazette editors for Phuket's international community.

Phuket's budget airlines facing heat
PHUKET: The Office of the Consumer Protection Board (OCPB) is summoning low-cost airlines to respond to complaints of unfair charges.

The OCPB has issued letters to all low-cost airlines operating in Thailand – Thai AirAsia, Nok Air and OneTwoGo by Orient Thai, all of which operate in Phuket – demanding that they meet with officials by tomorrow to discuss the complaints.

The Nation reports this morning that last week an MP from the South raised the issue, saying no frill operators were charging passengers higher prices than usual. Some passengers paid airfares at a level similar to ordinary airlines such as THAI Airways, the MP alleged.

Santisuk Klongchaiya, director of commercial operations at Thai Air Asia, said the airline would meet with the OCPB this week. He insisted that the company's average airfares were less than 10% of THAI's.

However, some walk-in passengers might be subject to a higher price because of the airline's 'dynamic price' reservation system, he said.

"I'm confident that more than 80 per cent of our consumers are enjoying cheap prices," he said.

The three airlines are popular in Phuket, where complaints about their pricing are rarely heard in local media or encountered in the Phuket Gazette's online forum.

No comments: