Why Airasia? The Big Shift
Airasia is a low cost airline that provides services all throughout SE Asia. Last year 9 of us in our family flew to Langkawi from KL for about $220 USD. That’s $220 altogether. We have flown to Thailand three times, to Bali, to Jakarta, and Hanoi all in one year. The planes have almost always been full. When we flew to Vancouver this past week from KL on a big carrier, United, I noticed some things that I hadn’t given eye to before. United puts out a red carpet for people in first class and business class and gives them a special gate. I just started to wonder about a question as I gazed on the red carpet that no one was using. Are we, the low-cost travelers, the ones who are paying for the red carpet? Think about it. Do the first class travelers really pay for the first class treatment? Corporate travelers are already getting a big discount and one of those seats takes the space of about 2-4 economy seats. When you consider that they have their own lines that cost more to service per person and more than twice the space, it should become pretty obvious that we are paying for a good percentage of their ride.
A few years ago Bali suffered 2 bombings that really devastated their tourist economy. When we talked to our hotel manager, who happened to be a Canadian that was adored by all of his staff, he said that it was only because of Airasia that the tourist industry has begun to pick up again. Why have they been able to revive the market where big carriers have failed?
Everyone knows that the further away you are from a disaster, the worst it seems. The people in the region know that about Bali, that it is not a dangerous place, so when Airasia began offering low- cost flights, the economy picked up.
So what does all this mean? The rich are charging you, the middle class, for their luxury. This is why you can’t stop video piracy in Asia. No one in their right mind believes that we should be paying for Tom Cruise’s salary. It is just so over-the-top for what he is worth. Come on, let’s get real.
The lesson from Airasia should be quite clear. The middle class is on the rise. Watch out Hollywood. The Airasia of the movie industry is coming.
Hmmm. Where will we travel this year that we couldn’t afford before? India? Cambodia?