Wednesday, June 12, 2013
A late scramble for bus tickets is on the cards for those planning the balik kampung trip for the coming Hari Raya period unless express bus companies get their way.
The companies want to raise their fares by 30% and have chosen not to sell advance tickets for July and August until they get Government confirmation over an increase.
The move, if approved, will see a bus ticket from Kuala Lumpur to Johor Baru costing about RM40 instead of the usual RM31.10 (Transnasional).
Pan Malaysian Bus Operators Association (PMBOA) president Datuk Ashfar Ali said the bus companies had met Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) officials in late May seeking the increase.
Malaysians planning to balik kampung for Hari Raya are worried that a delay in bus ticket sales would cause a massive rush in the last minute.
Student Amira Abdul Rahman fears not being able to return home to Kota Tinggi.
“I am afraid there will be a big rush,” said the 21-year-old. “I usually get my tickets about two weeks ahead and even then some are already sold out.
“Such a big hike in prices is also a huge burden, especially for students,” she said at the Bandar Tasik Selatan Integrated Transport Terminal here yesterday.
A decision will be made “very soon” on the demand by bus operators to increase bus fares by 30%.
Public Land Transport Commission (SPAD) chairman Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar said bus operators should not threaten the commission by holding back tickets for sale.
“I don't think they should pressure us this way by threatening to hold back ticket sale. Our priority should be to serve the people. I don't think this is the right way.
“We are looking at several options and we will make the decision before the festive season begins,” he commentedng on the Pan Malaysian Bus Operators Association's decision not to sell advance tickets for July and August until SPAD agrees to allow a 30% increase in ticket prices.