Tiger on the loose

TigerW200.jpgHas Tiger Airways lost its mind?

Clearly that is what some industry insiders are thinking following Tiger’s announcement that it plans to launch a domestic carrier in Australia around mid-year.

At first glance it seems there are already enough low-cost carriers in Australia given the size of Australia’s domestic market and the country’s small and isolated population. There seems to be far more potential in Asia, where Tiger is based, given the larger populations and the relatively small size of the domestic and regional markets.

But Australia is simply too easy of a market to access for Tiger to ignore. Any carrier from any nation can operate domestically in Australia regardless of where their owners reside. Australia’s open door policy, initially introduced to encourage competition after Ansett collapsed six years ago, is completely the opposite of the policies Tiger has been unsuccessfully trying to fight in Southeast Asia since launching in 2004.

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