Airlines to lower fuel surcharges on int’l routes in October

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South Korean airlines will lower fuel surcharges on international routes next month as jet fuel prices rise at a slower pace, industry sources said Thursday.

Starting Oct. 1, the surcharge for one-way tickets on international routes will range from 4,800 won (US$4) to 36,000 won, depending on the routes, according to the sources.

The Level 4 rate is down from the Level 3 range of 6,000 won to 54,000 won for this month.

In April, rising jet fuel prices prompted local air carriers to begin imposing fuel surcharges after a one-year hiatus. Fuel surcharges on international routes had stayed at zero since April last year due to low oil prices sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Local carriers’ surcharges depend on the level of jet fuel prices traded on the Singaporean market.

If the average jet fuel price on the Singapore spot market rises over $1.50 per gallon during the past month, South Korean airlines are allowed to impose fuel surcharges starting one month later.

Jet fuel prices averaged at $1.78 per gallon on the Singapore market for the one month to Sept. 15. The average price is the basis for setting jet fuel surcharges for October.

If jet fuel prices drop below the threshold, no surcharge is collected. There are 10 levels of surcharges, depending on the length of the route.