Qantas aims to close fuel surcharge loophole29/07/2019 - Author: admin
Exposed: A loophole in the Qantas and Emirates alliance has slashed fuel surcharges for some passengers. Photo: Nic WalkerSavvy frequent flyers are avoiding as much as $610 in fuel surcharges on Qantas international flights by exploiting a loophole in its alliance with Emirates.
Almost two months after the airlines launched their tie-up, executives from the two airlines will meet within the next week to talk about resolving a major difference between their fuel surcharges.
Travellers wanting to fly economy from Australia to London return have been able to escape paying $610 in fuel surcharges by redeeming their frequent-flyer points on an Emirates flight rather than Qantas. They can also pay $290 less for a return economy ticket on Emirates to an Asian destination.
The discrepancy is high on the agenda of the upcoming meeting between Qantas and Emirates executives about their alliance. They have not tackled the problem earlier because the airlines had been focused on overcoming other matters such as regulatory hurdles.
A possible resolution could be for Qantas to lower its fuel surcharges to better match Emirates. But a reduction would mean that Qantas would take a hit to its revenue. Conversely, any increase in charges by Emirates is likely to face a consumer backlash.
Fuel surcharges are mostly an expensive irritant for frequent-flyer members.
Qantas cannot raise the total cost of a ticket considerably higher than its rivals because it would make it uncompetitive. But it can try to recoup the cost of fuel by imposing fuel surcharges on passengers who are using frequent-flyer points to pay for their fare.
Qantas has almost 9 million frequent-flyer members.
The airline would not speculate on the likely outcome of the talks but a spokesman said it monitored fuel surcharges ”closely and where there’s an opportunity to reduce them, we will”.
Qantas has faced pressure from travel agents to reduce its surcharges after a fall in fuel prices.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.
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