mardi, septembre 05, 2006

October 31st

The caption under the main photo on the Times front page says it all: "Ryanair...coming soon to an airport near you". Is Malta hotting up for a new state of euphoria? Will we be blinded by the light? My prediction is at least partial blindness of the masses. Given that Dublin and Luton are not exactly discardable destinations, one or two trips to both destinations should prove to be a thrill once the prices are announced. And the novelty will take some time to wear off.

The ploy should work well. A starved beggar would turn a few scraps of bread into a banquet. Ditto the starved traveller. Getting to Luton on a quarter of the previously available prices should give anyone something to smile about. This will be even more so when we consider that Luton is a coach ride away from London. And I am not underestimating the pulling power of the leaning tower either. Pisa is a good destination to boot.

But what happens after we have been on our fourth trip to Luton? What happens when the novelty of St. Patricks day dies down? Will we begin to notice that the original Ryanair idea was to turn Malta into a hub? Will we get the hint that they wanted to improve the old airport and slap on a few more exotic routes to boot? Will we ever understand that the key to cheap travel is beyond the taxes and fees?

Ajjut and some other bloggers seem to have missed the point. They seem to think that Ryanair is not the issue. Or Easyjet or any cheap flying carrier. But it is you see. The whole point is that the fees need to be lowered BECAUSE we need the cheap flights. Because we need to travel. Because we need to be able to see more of the world than the Leaning Tower. Because we need to broaden our horizons and stop being so gullible.

Because we are sorry enough to give ourselves a congratulatory pat on the shoulder when big daddy lets us out for a frolic on the continent... but just that little bit.

Give me a break.

7 commentaires:

Arcibald a dit…

I can understand your argument about low-cost airlines and competition and I agree, but what's the use of having a Lm15 ticket when you still have to pay around Lm55 in taxes? Don't you think that the taxes issue is important too?

Kenneth a dit…

What Arcibald said.

Jacques René Zammit a dit…

Well... the Cheap'N'Cheerful camapign on J'Accuse has constantly shown that the taxes and departure fees are at the root of the problem. Just look through the previous posts on the issue and you will see.

What I am also saying is that the tax issue goes hand in hand with the issue of breaking the travel barrier. Breaking the barriers to travel means having the cheap transport.

So a combination of removal of the taxes AND ryanair & co. will probably move us forward.


Antoine Cassar a dit…

Probably, and hopefully.

To take a slightly more selfish take on the issue, I augur that one day we will have regular Ryanair flights between Malta and Frankfurt-Hahn.

Jacques René Zammit a dit…

To add on to Antoine's argument:

Frankfurt-Hahn and Brussels-Charleroi should have been an obvious destination for two reasons.

1. The EU Institutions. This does not only count for the fonctionnaires or contracted workers who would return home (and yes, why not say it - spend their well-earned euros in their own country). It also applies for the possibility of increasing interaction and lobbying between civil and commercial society and the institutions - particularly parliament and commission.

2. The Travel Freaks in Belgium and Germany.
Both Brussels Charleroi and Frankfurt Hahn carry a record number of passengers. In both cases the reason they chose to fly from there was the attractive price. Putting Malta on the list of destinations from Charleroi and Frnakfurt could only be a plus.

Egoistic or not... it makes sense.

Arcibald a dit…

Yes it makes sense... jahasra ma nistax nifhem kif qed naqblu u qed nargumentaw xorta :)

Ara... qabbel dil-bicca mal-bejgh tal-kondoms... int tixtieq li jkun hawn hafna kondoms ta' hafna flavours differenti ghax s'issa l-unici wahdiet li hawn huma dawk il-boring ta' bla toghma, u jien qed immur ghat-taxxa li wiehed presubbilment irid ihallas fuqhom, ghax huma ta' liema toghma huma, xorta ma nkunx naffordjahom kieku...

It-tnejn importanti imma meta tikkunsidra li t-taxxa tiswa daqs u kultant iktar mill-prezz stess, kondom tat-toghma brussels-sprout irhis kieku xorta jiswa m'ghola nfern. Jigifieri b'ghazla ikbar u xorta bit-taxxa nibqghu koppi.

U sadattant insomma l-gvern ghadu qed jifrah li ghandna nirringrazzjawh talli l-kondoms il-boring li jbellalna hu mhux imtaqqbin. Dak jonqos...

Jacques René Zammit a dit…