Aviation

ACCC calls for better regulations for “exploitative” airports

The Australian consumer watchdog is calling for stricter economic regulations on the country’s major airports to prevent them exploiting their market power.

In a submission made by the ACCC to the Productivity Commission’s inquiry into the economic regulation of airports, the watchdog noted that major airports have significantly raised aeronautical charges over time.

In the past decade alone, revenue per passenger has increased by 59 per cent at Perth Airport, 36 per cent at Brisbane Airport, 31 per cent at Melbourne, and 13 per cent at Sydney.

Despite its more subdued rate, Sydney still maintains the highest revenue per passenger of all four airports, almost doubling its charges just before it was privatised in 2002.

ACCC Chair Rod Sims said the high charges need to be addressed by a more effective regulatory regime.

“While commercially negotiated outcomes are preferred, there is an imbalance in bargaining power between monopoly airports and airlines, particularly small airlines,” he said.

“To achieve this, the airlines need better access to information and recourse to commercial arbitration if a commercial deal cannot be struck.”

The ACCC also expressed concerns over airports market power as the only providers of car parking on airport grounds.

They found that car park revenue has grown significantly over the last decade.

The operating profit margin across the four monitored airports was 64 per cent in 2016-17.

“A study of international car parking prices also found that short-term car parking prices at airports in Australia and New Zealand are higher compared with the average price at airports in both the Asia Pacific and the world,” Sims said.

The ACCC said it has concerns about airport market power in car parking and landside access services but does not recommend stronger regulatory oversight for these activities beyond the current monitoring arrangements.

“Unlike for aeronautical services, there does not appear to be an obvious more effective approach to regulating car parking and landside access services. Further, monitoring and advising consumers may be more effective in relation to car parking than aeronautical services because there are some other ground transport options available,” Sims said.

“In its monitoring and reporting the ACCC could inform consumers of the parking and travel options available. To promote competitive transport options the government could provide a formal direction to the ACCC to monitor landside access services which facilitate competition with on airport parking.”

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

News

How Travel Weekly has got your back during the COVID-19 crisis

We’ve come up with a few initiatives to help you recover from the impact of the COVID-19 crisis and come out the other side stronger than ever. Find out what they are here.

Share

CommentComments

Events

Women in Travel Awards winners’ circle: Siobhan Foley, Accenture

Looking for some inspo for your Women in Travel Awards entry? Siobhan Foley’s story will have you hitting ‘submit’ in no time.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Aloha Friday Wrap: Hawaii’s message to travellers, Hawaiian Airlines helps out medical workers + MORE!

This week’s Aloha Friday Wrap details how the US island state and its airline are responding to the COVID-19 crisis, and also provides some holiday inspo for once things return to normal.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

“Aloha from our home to yours”: Hawaii’s message to travellers

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Hawaii Tourism Authority has asked travellers to postpone their trips to the US island state so it can effectively address the health crisis.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Hawaiian Airlines to support medical workers with complimentary flights

Hawaiian Airlines will provide complimentary neighbour island flights for medical professionals during the month of April to support travel associated with COVID-19 response efforts.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Here’s how your clients can experience Oahu’s rich history and culture

by Ashlee Galea

An integral part of making a Hawaii holiday amazing, aside from beach time and tropical cocktails, is taking a deep dive into the culture and history of the Hawaiian Islands.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Carnival president slams NSW government’s “bitterly disappointing” treatment of cruise industry

by Ali Coulton

Sture Myrmell says the state government is not only putting remaining crew members at risk, but also impacting the cruise industry as a whole.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Qantas under investigation following cleaner’s suspension

Following news that ASIC would investigate Qantas, SafeWork NSW has launched a probe into the suspension of an aircraft cleaner who was employed by the national carrier.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

“The world will soon return”: Abu Dhabi says city’s silence is a time for reflection

by Christian Fleetwood

Abu Dhabi has released a message of hope, looking forward to the moment the emirate can welcome the world again.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

WATCH: Empty Welsh streets taken over by tribe of goats

In the deserted streets of Llandudno in northern Wales, where residents are on lockdown, goats have descended from the Great Orme and into the town.

Share

CommentComments

Technology

Webjet pulls plug on cruise sales business, actions 440-plus redundancies

by Huntley Mitchell

The online travel company has resumed trading on the ASX, but not before detailing some harsh measures to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Marriott suffers data breach involving 5.2 million guests

What started as a headache for Marriott’s boss amid the COVID-19 crisis has turned into a migraine following this unfortunate news.

Share

CommentComments