“Samoa Airways is surprised with the comments considering that we have a very close working relationship with Savai’i Tourism Association and the Tourism Taskforce Team,” said Samoa Airways CEO Seiuli Tupuivao Tuala.
The Samoa Hotels Association and Samoa Savai’i Tourism Association President Tupa’i Sale’imoa Va’ai told the media yesterday that communication between the airline and the Association needed to improve as they were surprised when the Savai’i flights were launched without communicating with them.
Seiuli said that the President is part of our Tourism Board and both SHA and SSTA are part of the Tourism Taskforce Team (TTT).
Through these meetings, Samoa Airways have communicated the launch of its Savai’i services.
“There was never a lack of communication on any part from the airline,” said Seiuli Tupuivao Tuala.
Over the past weeks, Samoa Airways and Samoa Tourism Authority have worked together to communicate the Savai’i services using various media outlets, including Radio, TV and Newspapers.
The approach taken was to centralize marketing and communications of the services.
“Samoa Airways is grateful to our Tourism Authority team for their efforts and support from the industry stakeholders as SHA and SSTA for the Savai’i services to become a reality,” said Seiuli.
On the matter of airfares, Samoa Airways current one-way fare at $89, is to support the cost of flying a return service.
“Operating cost for any flight is not cheap. The length of the flight does not change the price of fuel or airport and passenger charges. That cost is spread over the number of seats on an aircraft, which is far less than seats on the ferry,” he explained.
Samoa Airways will now launch services on Friday 09 October coinciding with White Sunday weekend.
“The airline looks forward to welcoming our people on board its flights to and from Savai’i and reiterate for support from the Savai’i hoteliers by taking advantage of inclusive weekend packages offered by the national carrier, said Seiuli.