Thursday, 24 April 2008

Malaysian Not Travelling Locally Enough

I do agree with Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Azalina Othman where she said that Malaysians are not travelling locally as much as they travel overseas. She defended herself saying that travelling locally should be much cheaper as compared to overseas. We do have good road and surely people are willing to travel as we have good quality roads.

In this case, I do not agree with her. It is true that Malaysian students must be taught that we have lots of historical sites but do we have frequest school trips to visit those historical sites then? Never! I remember it was my family who brought me to Melaka to pay a visit to many of the historical sites. It goes the same to Penang too. I am not saying schools are not doing enough for its students. I think national schools are not encouraged by the government to have frequent school trips to visit some historical sites. The idea of travelling locally have not being installed in their mind. In that circumstance, would you blame Malaysians travelling overseas frequently? I don't think so.

For starters, look at train prices then. Trains do not run on time and they are expensive. Would you like to travel from one place to another place by train which is not punctual and very expensive then? Surely one would not want to do so.

Next, say if you want to travel from Kuala Lumpur to Penang by flight, how much is the fare? Oh, it is cheap if you go on AirAsia. Ok, fine... You can travel by AirAsia but how much is the true cost? You have to take hours to get to the airport and most of the time, you would not be able to get cheap flights. Do you know why? The air fare travelling locally is relatively more expensive because there is not enough people travelling on it. If there are many people who wants to travel, I am sure that the airline operators can negotiate a price so as to transpose those cost saving money to customers. I think most people would like to drive to their destination rather than to take a bus or a coach. Why? Buses are not punctual and most of the time they will wait for more customers to board the bus before they leave the bus station. This, however, with the exception for a few bus operators which is charging more for their bus fare.

For those reasons above, who would like to travel locally? Just put yourself in their shoes. If you can travel overseas for a week, lets say... a week to China, staying in a five star hotel with full board... Or you want to travel to Melaka and stay in a three star hotel with half board for the same price? Travelling overseas is much better, right? I would think so.

In a nutshell, so long as the government does not offer competitive prices to customers, I think people would rather travel overseas or drive locally. If they do drive, they will not drive too far away so the best thing is to travel by air to other countries.


Joshua said...

Well Said Tailo! Well Said!

ぜるもう said...

I think unless the government is willing to raise the level of air travel competition within the county, not many people will want to travel within the country by air...

Joshua said...

Air Asia has done very well in this subject matter. Domestic Air Fares by Air Asia is at rock bottom price but really it has been a Malaysian culture for the last 50 years that people prefer to save up and spend it overseas. It's always been this way.

Azalina can open her big mouth but what are the plans by her to change this culture?

ぜるもう said...

I think the people would travel locally if the air fare is cheaper.. It is like in the EU, we have bmi,easyjet and ryanair. Get on with it!