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Book Travel Fast To Avoid Surcharge Increase

Book Travel Fast To Avoid Surcharge Increase

Travellers should book now to avoid getting stung by another round of fuel surcharge increases, according to one of New Zealand’s largest travel retailers.

Flight Centre general manager Rick Hamilton said airline profits had been slashed by fuel costs this year, and a new round of fuel surcharge increases was imminent.

Qantas has already confirming an increase in surcharges will take effect as early as 6 September, and Mr Hamilton said the travel retailer was encouraging its client base to book as soon as possible in order to secure a good deal. Air Pacific's latest fuel surcharge increase takes affect as of 8 September.

“New Zealanders are always cost conscious when it comes to a big ticket purchase such as overseas travel, and we always want to see our customers get the best deal.

“While there are some major sales due out in the later part of the year, for those people that are looking to buy travel in the short term, we recommend getting in and booking right now.”

Flight Centre warned some return international ticket prices could increase by as much as $115 overnight.

Mr Hamilton said fuel surcharges were still being treated as a separate charge behind the scenes, although travellers were not aware of this as they were now normally advertised within the body of the fare.

“We still disagree with fuel surcharges being a separate part of an airfare, as it is completely unnecessary to separate them out and allows airlines to increase costs without saying they are simply increasing airfares.

“Airlines like Emirates have already incorporated fuel back into the main body of the fare, and it is hard to see why others haven’t followed the lead. We understand the pressures airlines face, but the reality is rising fuel prices are affecting every business.”

Ends

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