PAL asks CAB okay to hike fuel surcharges for overseas flights

By Lenie Lectura, Business Mirror

Posted at Jan 24 2011 10:39 AM | Updated as of Jan 25 2011 12:44 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Local carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) has asked the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) to allow it to raise fuel surcharges for international routes.

It has asked the board to grant its application to add $10 in the ticket price for flights between Manila and Hong Kong from $25 to $35. For Macau and Taiwan flights, it wants to add $16 from the current $19. Fuel surcharge for Xiamen, China may go up by $21 from $24 to $45. The ticket price increase to Vietnam and Singapore may reach by as much as $50 from $34 and $29, respectively, if PAL’s application is approved.

In South Korea and Guam where the fuel surcharge is pegged at $34, PAL is contemplating to raise this to $55.

Meanwhile, for Japan and Indonesia, passengers could pay $60 in fuel surcharge from the current $39 and $44, respectively. Beijing and Shanghai fuel surcharge is at $44. The airline wants to raise this to $65. For India, it is now at $104. PAL may raise this to $125.

Australia and Honolulu flights may see fuel surcharge to go as high as $130 from the current $109 and $99, respectively. Passengers to the US, except in Honolulu, and to Canada are going to charged $135 if PAL’s petition is approved.

PAL’s petition for authority to impose upward adjustment of fuel surcharge on international passenger tickets will be evaluated by the CAB on January 27.

The fuel surcharge, imposed on top of regular fares, is a temporary relief given by regulators to allow airlines to mitigate losses from the spiraling cost of jet fuel.

Fuel accounts for one-third of an airline’s operating cost per passenger, and is the second-highest expense next to labor.