Indonesia raises domestic fares 'to boost airline safety'

8 Jan 2015 by Alex McWhirter

Domestic airline tickets in Indonesia could soon be more expensive.

In a bid to improve airline safety in the aftermath of the Air Asia tragedy (see news, December 29), the government is reportedly "cracking down on the sale of cheap tickets for domestic flights to ensure airlines do not cut corners on safety".

Local authorities are "raising the floor for economy class domestic flights with airlines prevented from selling tickets at less than 40 per cent of a ceiling price set by the [Transport] Ministry," reports Reuters.

By raising fares, the Indonesian government hopes that the increased revenue will enable the airlines to improve their safety. But, of course, that is on the assumption that the extra cash will be used for its intended purpose.

Indonesia has many airlines, most of whom only fly domestically. But because of their patchy safety records almost all — notable exceptions include Garuda and Air Asia — are banned from flying to, from or within EU airspace.

Indonesia's transport minister Ignasius Johan said: "We want the aviation sector to be healthy, not cheap. If it's cheap, there are many things that might not be done."

It must be emphasised that the price controls only apply to domestic flights and will not affect the cost of international services to or from Indonesia.

Alex McWhirter

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