Emirates imposes fuel surcharges of up to Dh1,040

Airline blames ticket price increases on rising oil prices.

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DUBAI // Emirates Airline has imposed a fuel surcharge of up to Dh1,040 for a return business-class ticket to the Americas, blaming the increases on rising oil prices.

Economy-class tickets for the same flights rose by Dh300.

For Europe, Africa, the Far East and Australasia, the increase for economy class was Dh160 return.For the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent it was Dh80 return.

A spokeswoman said the carrier had incurred substantial costs by absorbing recent increases in the price of oil, which was yesterday about US$110 (Dh404) a barrel. The surcharge, she said, would allow it to respond faster to the market, and would be continually reviewed.

"Due to the current volatility of oil prices, Emirates is introducing a fuel surcharge to reflect the substantial recent increases in our fuel costs," she said.

Etihad said it had made adjustments to fuel surcharges in some markets, including the UAE, last month but did not say by how much. A spokeswoman said that though fuel accounted for 40 per cent of operating costs, Etihad hedged its purchases to keep those costs stable and had already taken into account higher oil prices for the year ahead.

The surcharges come just weeks before the start of the summer travel season. Travel companies said they expected people to continue with their plans regardless.