Soaring crude oil prices have forced airlines around the world to introduce fuel levies to cover their rising operating costs. British Airways announced last week that it would add a $4 surcharge to every flight purchased outside the UK, and £2.50 ($4.40) on UK-purchased flights. Qantas chief executive Geoff Dixon, announcing last week a surcharge of A$6 ($4.23) per domestic flight and A$15 per international flight, said that fuel prices are now 60% higher than a year ago. The decision follows Continental's move last month to increase its fuel surcharge from $10 to $15, as chief executive Gordon Bethune warned that continued high fuel costs could prevent the airline returning to profit this year. With crude oil over $40 a barrel last week, the highest it has been in over a decade, and expected to reach record highs later, jet fuel was also high at $394-396 per tonne.

Source: Flight International