thank you for the detailed explanation, i agree with the majority of your post in particular when it comes to the complexity and the wide number of parameters involved in ticket pricing. obviously you have more credibility and experience on the topic given that you have more exposure to that sector. there is however one key issue of which i hold a different opinion.One more time we find people fighting the wrong fight, on the wrong front; arguing about things they don’t know anything about.
Airlines are not taxis, they don’t charge by the mile flown!
Airline ticket pricing is a very complex formula, almost an art by itself! Many variables affect the final price: schedule, aircraft type, code share, direct/connection, time of booking, location of the booker, operational costs, airport fees, airspace fees… just to name a few!
MEA is a FOR PROFIT business, not a charity! If it’s able to sell at high prices and yet fill up its seats than why should it be blamed for that! If there are people willing to pay that price than whose fault is it?
As citizens and indirect shareholders of MEA we shouldn’t be questioning its pricing model but its profitability (not to go into all other financials)! In brief: knowing how much revenue the company is capable of are the declared profits/losses acceptable? Is the company overspending? Wasting money on unnecessary costs? Inflating expenses? Etc… Is management taking the right business decisions? How it is sourcing its suppliers? Any doubts of embezzlement and corruption? That’s where we should be looking and asking officials to investigate!
Flying is not a right in order for the government to subsidise it and MEA is not a monopoly, most of its destinations are served by other airlines too. If you feel its prices are overpriced (and I believe so) then just don’t book with them, no one is forcing you!
I’m not defending MEA here, it’s an airline that I avoid like avoiding the plague! I believe its management is corrupt that’s the fight not the ticket pricing. I’d rather see a clean management who better manages expenses and corporate gifts, keep same pricing (even increase them if people are willing to pay (e.g price elasticity)) and generate higher profits to the State!
What’s next? At this rate, some Lebanese will soon start asking the government to control the prices of Botox injection, fake boobs and penis enlargement pills!
(excuse my rant but I woke up on the wrong side f the bed lol)
MEA is not a strictly for profit business.
MEA's loss of profit on books is very acceptable if it could offset a bigger loss to the treasury and the economy overall. after all MEA is not a private company, it is owned by BDL. as i have mentioned previously one of the major disagreements with hout's directives is that he does not perceive the company as an integral part of our economy and is more interested in showing profits on books than he is in leveraging MEA in order to benefit our economy overall, and this disagreement became even more obvious with minister avadis guidanian who offered a complete plan to attract tourism from europe, the plan was surprisingly successful, however hout refused to place a certain number of tickets at the service of the plan, eventually that showed as profit for MEA, but it registered as a loss to the economy and to the state overall.
if we examine how Cyprus and Greece reacted to their economical and financial crisis, we would note that they have lowered the ticket prices of their airlines in order to catalyze business and tourism. i am quite sure the state funded parts of the discounts, which could still be a possibility in Lebanon, however raising the prices of the tickets or putting further restraints on the people's ability to travel is counter productive given the crisis we are currently experiences. round trip tickets to cyprus were sold in Lebanon at an obscenely low 60$ (all taxes included), pending that you will stay one full week on the island.
so the complexity does not simply stop at the level of the ticket pricing, but it also factors into other areas, it affects in particular small businesses and frequent travelers, and could easily reflect on the economy over all and directly contribute to further isolating our country.