September 09, 2018 at 07:35 pm
Darwin G. Amojelar
Airline tickets are set to become more expensive after the government approved the reimposition of fuel surcharge on local and international flights to help airlines recover losses from costlier jet fuel.
“There is a matrix already. It’s with the DOTr [Department of Transportation]. It went through Secretary [Arthur Tugade] and we followed his guidance and we followed the model of Japan. Because we want to have a matrix that everytime there is an increase in fuel or decrease, they don’t need to go back to us,” Transportation Undersecretary for aviation and airports Manuel Antonio Tamayo told reporters.
“The one we approved as far as DOTr is concerned is the matrix that was prepared by CAB [Civil Aeronautics Board] which is between a higher matrix proposal and a lower one. It’s in the middle. Everything will depend on the cost of fuel. So that was approved. It went through the board,” Tamayo said.
Tamayo said the reimposition of fuel surcharge would be implemented within the month.
“We have to let the airlines survive instead of canceling flights, sacrificing quality of service,’ he said.
The CAB suspended the imposition of fuel surcharge in all domestic and international flights in 2015 because of lower jet fuel prices.
A fuel surcharge is a temporary relief granted to airlines to help them recover losses incurred from higher jet fuel prices.
Fuel accounts for about 50 percent of an airline’s operating cost and is the second-highest expense next to labor.
Cebu Air Inc., the company behind Cebu Pacific, earlier asked the CAB to approve a fuel surcharge amounting to P70 to P280 for domestic flights and $6 to $26 for international flights.
Cebu Pacific is also seeking a fuel surcharge of P1 to P2 for cargo on domestic flights and $0.20 to $0.30 on international flights.
PAL asked the CAB to approve P282 worth of fuel surcharge each way for Luzon to Luzon and Visayas routes; P405 for Luzon to Mindanao routes; and P158 for Visayas to Visayas routes.
PAL seeks to impose a fuel surcharge of P222 for Mindanao to Visayas/Mindanao routes.
Philippines Air Asia also filed with the CAB a petition for authority to impose cargo fuel surcharge from P1 to P7 per kilo on actual rate.