Energy price hikes to be felt in tourism sector


TAIPEI — The travel industry complained yesterday that the government’s recent decision to raise fuel prices and electricity rates will have a negative impact on the industry due to increased operational costs.

Yao Ta-kuang, chairman of the Taiwan Travel Agent Association, said the price hikes will be especially felt by tour bus and hotel businesses because they rely heavily on energy.

“We expect the tourism industry to react to the situation quickly,” Yao said, adding that significant surges in the cost of travel deals are likely in the next quarter.

For instance, he said, the daily rental fee for a tour bus could increase by as much as NT$1,000 (US$34), while an average rise of NT$1,000 is expected in hotel room rates.

Meanwhile, fees for inbound travel groups could go up by 5 percent, Yao predicted.

Yao’s point of view was shared by a member of the Hotel Association of the R.O.C., who complained that the government’s decision will put the nation’s tourism development at risk.