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BA takes off with fuel surcharges

Stephen Beard May 30, 2008
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BA takes off with fuel surcharges

Stephen Beard May 30, 2008
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TEXT OF STORY

Renita Jablonski: And then, there’s the new reality of the price of travel. British Airways just raised its fuel surcharge for the second time in a month. Next week passengers will pay a fuel fee of $430 on many long-haul BA flights. Stephen Beard has more from London.


Stephen Beard: This is the thirteenth time in four years that BA has pushed up its fuel surcharge. This time by 27 percent. It’s certainly not the only carrier to do so. Japan Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Lufthansa and KLM have also hit passengers with higher charges in recent weeks.

Fuel is the airlines’ biggest single cost. And, says consumer advocate James Fremantle, surcharges and other supplements have now really taken off.

James Fremantle: On many routes to America you’re finding that taxes,fees and charges are actually more than the actual airfare itself. This has become commonplace in Europe and now it’s spreading to long haul flights as well.

BA’s $430 fuel surcharge is thought likely to hit the all-important transatlantic air travel market. The rising price of oil has just claimed another airline casualty. The business carrier Silverjet has suspended all its flights.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

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