Bitter -- but not surprising -- news for travelers. Airlines are already beginning to boost their fuel surcharges as oil prices spike. I'm sure all of us who love to travel view the latest energy industry news through the prism of what impact this will have on our travel costs!
That may sound insensitive to people who must drive to work daily, or for truckers who are constantly struggling to eke out of a living while facing ever-higher fuel costs. My eldest brother Robert, who is an absolute treasure, is a truck driver in Alberta and I know how much higher fuel bills hurt him. In fact, Mrs. Cat may soon be forced to supplement her daily Cat Chow with some wild game, although that's another story. Knowing my big brother, Robert will start eating Cat Chow before he forces any austerity measures on Mrs. Cat (who is, BTW, the queen of the steady stream of feral cats that Rob takes in)
But since I and many of my blogging buddies are travel obsessed, I've been thinking a lot about rising airline fuel surcharges and was dismayed by reports in Today's Toronto Star (Canada's largest daily newspaper, by circulation)
The Star reports that Air Transat and Skyservice are already saying that their fuel surcharges on international roundtrip flights will be rising by $20 for a total surcharge of $120 as of March 17.Air Transat is also applying the surcharge to sun destinations as well, says The Star. The airlines are responding in the wake of record high oil prices.
The Star reports that earlier this month, several U.S. airlines raised their round-trip ticket prices to offset rising jet-fuel costs.
Fuel costs are an airline's largest expense after wages and benefits. Which is easy to understand, given that the price of crude oil set a record trading high of $110.20 US per barrel on Wednesday.
Air Canada, which is Canada's largest airline, says it will adjust surcharges "from time to time in response to fuel price changes, market conditions and other factors." I take that to mean AC's surcharges will be going up faster than jet plane.
I think this means that very soon, I'll either have to :A) get a second job to support my travel habit; B) learn to cut my own hair; C) learn to make my own soap; or D) learn how to make a business suit out of some old curtains.
You'll note that for me, NOT traveling is NOT an option.