Low cost carrier Tigerair Australia has asked the National Competition Council (NCC) to recommend that the ‘Domestic Terminal Service’ provided by Sydney Airport at its domestic Terminal 2 be ‘declared’ under Part IIIA of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.
If approved by the designated Commonwealth Minister within the 180 day period in which a declaration may be made, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) may be called in to arbitrate.
The airline says it currently faces a number of issues at T2 including limited access to gates with aerobridges, access to a restricted number of check-in counters, and unresolved issues regarding investment in improved check-in capacity, all of which it says adversely affect its customer experience, travel time and operating costs. Tigerair shares T2 with low cost rival Jetstar, part-owner Virgin Australia, and Regional Express.
“As a relatively new entrant at Sydney Airport, Tigerair currently operates in an environment where the infrastructure is increasingly constrained,” Tigerair Australia CEO Rob Sharp said in a statement. “This has a major impact on the experience of our customers, increases operating costs and limits future expansion opportunities. For Tigerair to compete effectively at Sydney Airport and pass on those benefits to the travelling public, fair and reasonable access to available infrastructure, particularly at demand-driven times of day, is crucial.”
“At present, no airline can operate in and out of Sydney without using the monopoly services provided by Sydney Airport and these pose significant cost to an airline’s business,” Davis added. “We simply can’t wait for the medium or long term for solutions to appear – it’s a highly competitive environment and we can’t compete in this market with one hand tied behind our back.”
Tigerair says it will continue to operate as normal while the NCC considers its application for access declaration.
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