Both Virgin Australia and Qantas have both announced that they will be removing fuel surcharges from tickets. Fuel surcharges were initially implemented in response to soaring fuel prices. However, jet fuel prices have dropped almost 50 percent in the past 6 months and calls have been made for airlines to reduce their airfares.
Despite this, consumers are not benefiting from the removal of surcharges as airfares remain the same. It is evident that airlines are compensating for the removal of fuel surcharges by increasing fare prices. Virgin recently announced that passengers can expect to see a AUD$40 decrease in fare prices in the wake of the removal of fuel surcharges. However, fuel surcharges would have added around AUD$600 to an international round-trip fare. This has led to consumers wondering why the reduction in fares only amount to a meager AUD$40. Similarly, Qantas have also made it clear that despite the removal of fuel surcharges, its airfares will remain the same.
It is clear that despite the removal of fuel surcharges, both Virgin and Qantas are maintaining airfares and the announcements made are merely a marketing tool that will leave consumers disappointed. The only difference is that the way these airlines break down their airfares will exclude the words “fuel surcharge”.