KOTA KINABALU 2011/08/05: Climbers of Mount Kinabalu, Southeast Asia's highest peak, have to pay higher guide fees from Sept 1.
They have to fork out between RM48 and RM60 more from the existing fees, depending on the route they take.
The new fees for those who trek up the mountain and back through the Timpohon Gate are RM128 for three climbers and RM150 for four to six climbers, compared with the present rates of RM85 and RM100.
For those climbing up from the Timpohon Gate and coming down at Mesilau, the rates are RM143 for a group of three climbers and RM173 for four to six climbers, an increase of RM48 and RM58, respectively.
Climbers using the Mesilau route on a return trip have to pay RM150 for three climbers and RM180 for four to six climbers, which are RM50 and RM60 more from the present rates.
A spokesman for Sabah Parks said the decision to increase the rates was taken following a request by the Kinabalu Mountain Guides Association (KMGA).
KMGA chairman Suhaji Sumail said it was necessary to raise the fees considering the guides' heavy responsibilities.
"Taking into account the increase in the cost of living, the current rate of between RM85 and RM120 to guide climbers about eight times a month is too low," he said.