Due to a delayed flight from Penang to KLIA, Abby missed the connecting flight to Sabah and had to content with the soaring ticket prices.
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Flight fares to and from Sabah or Sarawak have been skyrocketing, and many people have voiced out about the matter.
These expensive flight fares have priced out many people, especially students, who want to fly home to Sabah and Sarawak from the peninsular. To make it worse, ticket prices go higher during festive seasons.
Recently, a woman who wished to fly to Sabah cried because she couldn’t afford to buy another ticket after missing her connecting flight.
TikTok user Abby (@abbywhooo) shared her heartbreak in a video and explained what happened.
Abby usually flies directly to Sabah from Penang but this time, she had to buy a transit ticket to KLIA because all the direct flights were sold out.
However, the flight from Penang to KLIA was delayed. She cried throughout the whole flight knowing that she would miss her flight to Sabah from KLIA.
She had no choice but to try to purchase a new ticket to get back to Sabah. Sadly, only Malaysia Airlines (MAS) tickets were available and they cost RM1,000 and above.
She called her mother for advice and asked what she should do. Amid her heartbreak, her mother sent her an encouraging message.
No issue, just proceed. Don’t stress. Money can be found any time. What’s important is for you to reach home safely.Abby’s mother sent in SMS
Rintihan orang Sabah & Sarawak yang bekerja dan belajar di Semenanjung. Sampai menangis sis ni sebab terlepas flight pic.twitter.com/5YtuSKN8zo— Pemburu Tiket Murah (@pmbrutiketmurah) April 16, 2023
Netizens sympathised with Abby and those who were in her shoes before knew how it felt. They said they didn’t have many airline choices during festive seasons and had to put up with exorbitant prices just to get home.
Other netizens said the airlines usually would replace the missed flight for free, especially if the previous flight was delayed. However, that might mean another round of waiting at the airport.
A few netizens urged Transport Minister Anthony Loke and the local airlines to look into the matter. They suggest allowing passengers like Abby to board the next flight on any airline with an extra RM50 fee to make it easier for travellers.
A netizen suggested that any East Malaysians studying or working in the peninsular should have at least RM2,000 as emergency funds for last-minute flight tickets.
Meanwhile, another person said the high prices are discriminatory towards Sabahans and Sarawakians although they are also Malaysians.
Hopefully, a better solution can be drawn up to rectify this longstanding issue.
Raised flight fares akin to daylight robbery
Previously on April 2022, former Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin said local airlines raising the flight fares to Sabah and Sarawak during the festive season was daylight robbery.
Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew recently said airlines should increase flight frequencies to Sabah during the festive season to keep fares affordable.
It is high time for them (airlines) not to ignore East Malaysians, not just Sabahans who want to come home, not just Hari Raya but during other festivals. If you know your (airlines) flights should be full this time around, then you should think of increasing your number of flights.Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew
She also pointed out that tourists would want to come to Sabah for the holidays, but the soaring ticket prices would turn them away.
I rasa nak nangis bila dia cakap susah jadi orang Sabah disini 🥺🥺🥺— anur (@Ano_hidayah) April 16, 2023
Betul. “Ssh oo jd org sabah disini” means dia tdk bnyk pilihan flight bila balik musim perayaan. Itu ja la pilihan yg dia tnggl. Transit. Itu pun gagal. Saya dlm situasi itu 20++ thn dulu. Lagi teruk. Bergantung MAS semata. Murah, balik. Mahal, nangis dlm bilik sorang2.— MrMrsHerna74 (@Herna_74) April 16, 2023
Kalau dia book directly under one airline, for example MAS, they’ll provide another free ticket if you some how miss your connecting flights. I was in this situation a couple of years ago. So, I feel you sista. Godspeed— Cholestrol Affiliated (@zee_yusoff) April 16, 2023
If dia ambil tiket MAS from Pen to Bkk in one booking. If terlepas MAS akn replace for free. But if different airlines. Definitely x blh replace. Should be if dffrnt airline kena ambil gap masa more than 6 hours utk selamat. Kmudian tiket on the spot utk prgi mana2 mmg mahal.— OnlyKojie (@kojie_yama) April 16, 2023
@anthonyloke dah bleh pakat bincang dgn @airasia @MAS @malindoair mana2 passenger yg terlepas flight naik je lah next flight (last flight of the day pun ok – kumpulkan passenger yg delay ni) naik mana2 company flight n charge extra rm50 je. Simple idea for humanity. RT plss— ђâ๓๓äɭ 🇵🇸🇲🇾 (@Pokokpangkal) April 16, 2023
Setiap sabahan yang stay di semenanjung ni kena at least ada 2K lah emergency fund untuk beli tiket flight balik ja in case ada emergency kena beli last minit.— SMR (@Ripsody) April 16, 2023
Sis… sedihnyaaaa 😭 mahal gilaaa tiket lagi lagi mas.. ni transit rm 800, balik KK lagi rm 600++ 😭 nonsens do diorang ni— Liena ✨ (@noraxliena) April 16, 2023
seriously syarikat penerbangan ni. semua nak markup harga kaw kaw dekat rakyat sabah sarawak yang nak balik kampung sendiri. especially perayaan kot. negeri masih dalam malaysia tapi kena tindas macam rakyat luar negara.— ✧ (@ouhsunshine) April 16, 2023
Dari zaman belajar sampai sekarang nak balik raya mesti spend RM1k++. Dah mcm nak pergi luar negara pulak. Sabah sarawak ni mmg anak tiri kan.— ElisOsman✨ (@elissssssss_) April 16, 2023
Korang jgn ckp beli la awal2. Ingat senang ke nak adjust cuti apa semua. Sabah sarawak ni dlm malaysia je apehal tiket mahal nk mampus