Recently, Minister Joel Morgan went on SBC to give accolades to the Air Seychelles- Etihad management, for registering a 117% increase in profits, jumping from $1 Million in 2012, to $3 Million plus in 2013. An incredible feat, and believable to me, given that Air Seychelles in that time, flew directly mostly to Abu Dhabi then hooked a Hong Kong leg Three (3) times a week to Abu Dhabi, mostly, for air access for Etihad.
The real story is on the ground right here in Seychelles.
While Air Seychelles did 117% overall in profit, the Domestic segment which plies Mahe –Praslin petered about with only a 9% increase in passenger load, from the past year, mostly Etihad inbound clients. This number is particularly alarming when you consider that Minister St. Ange is claiming a year on year increase in Arrivals by 12%. What this means, is that Arrivals, are avoiding Air Seychelles Domestic. Why would they be doing that, Papa-Wappa?
Unpredictable Ticket Pricing
Most of the time, when you book a Air Seychelles Domestic ticket, they charge you between Scr. 1,000- 2200.00 round trip with odd hours of return. A Couple travelling on Air Seychelles Domestic Mahe- Praslin is likely to get stuck with a 4,000.00 rupee bill, for a 15 minute island hopper using kerosene fuel. The pricing scheme is simply mad. It has had the effect of allowing market space for Cat Cocos to increase its fairs for economy to near Scr. 300.00.
The impact on the economy has not gone un noticed. You do not need a scientist to figure it all out. 1. Less travelers on Air Seychelles means less activity for the airport staff on Praslin, a new airport, with staff getting bored to death and resigning to work in hotels;2. Taxi Drivers have been idle since the new fare increases took place, their business has been cut by at least 50%; hotels suffer;trade between Mahe and Praslin suffers.
While Air Seychelles is celebrating 117% profit, Mr. Morgan, your strategy has turned Praslin into a back water, with lots of nature, but no economic activity. You need to fix this problem or President James Michel, needs to make you an Ambassador on Pirates Rights.
|Here is a quoted round trip on Air Seychelles Domestic per person with 10 kg. A couple going to Mahe can buy a ticket to Mauritius at this price.|
Baggage Allowance Skinning
On baggage allowance Etihad Air Seychelles has not been very kind. They increase Arrival excess to Euro 6.00 per kilo for a 15 minute hopper, charging mostl Emirates passengers with the excess. Allowable kilos is 10 per passenger. But on an inbound international flight connecting to Air Seychelles Domestic, it is at the very least, 23 kilos. Air Seychelles Domestic was making Arrivals pay the difference on each flight, tacking an additional euro 60.00 to each passenger onward to Praslin.
Excess baggage for locals is not any prettier. It has gone from 10.0 rupees per kilo to 50.00 per kilo. Minister Morgan, why don’t you just drop an A- Bomb on Praslin, and finish her off?
Cancel Excursions For Day Trips
In the past Air Seychelles had a reasonable excursion for day trippers who need to see a doctor on Mahe, or do business in a government office, or shop a bit fr things they cannot find on Praslin. They would come down for the day, do their meetings, conduct their business, and go back to Praslin. In that process, they use to rent a car, or hire a taxi to get about. For Scr. 525.00 you could take a 9.00 am flight and be back in Praslin 5.45 pm. Now this is impossible. It cost no less then Scr. 1600.00 for the same flight unless of course, you are politically connected and can get a cheaper flight.
No economy can work with such malfunctioning policies. How does Air Seychelles register 117% profit increase unless it is really just working for Etihad air access?
Seselwa Unite For Sesel Pou Seselwa!
May God Bless All Freedom Loving Seychellois!
In comparison to a return flight to Alicante, Spain. A round trip of 2092 miles, duration of 5hrs flight time.