Japan Airlines’ (JAL) passengers could see a rise in their ticket prices starting from August as the country’s flag carrier is set to increase its fuel surcharges on international flights.
For tickets issued between August 1 and September 30, per segment surcharges for flights originating in Japan will range from 1,000 yen (US$9.31) on a Japan-Korea ticket to 14,000 yen (US$130.31) on a Japan-USA ticket. This is up from 500 yen (US$4.65) on a Japan-Korea ticket and 10,500 yen ($US97.73) on a Japan-USA ticket issued between June 1 and July 31.
Meanwhile, passengers travelling on JAL flights originating from outside Japan will face per segment surcharges ranging from US$6 on a Japan-Korea ticket to US$129 on a Japan-USA ticket for tickets issued between August 1 and September 30. This is up from US$4 on a Japan-Korea ticket and US$86 on tickets between Japan and the USA for tickets issued between June 1 and July 31.
Fuel is one of the biggest operating costs for airlines and managing the fluctuating price of it is a significant challenge for airline management. While it may be unpopular with the travelling public, shifting the cost onto the passenger is a method many airlines use to alleviate their cost burden.
JAL says it adjusts its fuel surcharge levels bimonthly based on the two-month average price of Singapore kerosene-type jet fuel.
“We originally introduced Fuel [sic] surcharge in response to unprecedented rises. We highly appreciate your understanding and cooperation,” JAL says on its website.
The fuel surcharge is not an insignificant cost for passengers, especially on longer flights. On a flight from Tokyo to Vancouver, for example, passengers currently need to pay a total of 28,440 yen (US$264) in taxes. At 21,000 yen, the fuel surcharge makes up nearly 74% of the taxes that need to be paid on this ticket. However, on a flight ticket from Tokyo to Seoul, the fuel surcharge is only about 20% of the total taxes.
Here is a detailed breakdown of the current and new fuel surcharges per person for each segment from/to Japan on JAL flights originating in Japan:
|Current fuel surcharge (applicable till July 31, 2019)||New fuel surcharge (applicable on/after August 1, 2019)|
|Based on average price of fuel:||JPY 8,749/barrel||JPY 9,073/barrel|
|Route (per person per sector flown)|
|Japan – Korea, Far East Russia||500 Yen (US$4.65)||1,000 Yen (US$9.31)|
|Japan – East Asia (excluding Korea)||2,500 Yen (US$23.27)||3,500 Yen (US$32.58)|
|Japan – Guam, Palau, Philippines, Vietnam, Russia||3,000 Yen (US$27.92)||4,000 Yen (US$37.23)|
|Japan – Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Russia||4,500 Yen (US$41.88)||6,500 Yen (US$60.50)|
|Japan – Hawaii, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia||6,000 Yen (US$55.84)||8,500 Yen (US$79.11)|
|Japan – Canada, Europe, Middle East, Oceania, USA, Mexico||10,500 Yen (US$97.73)||14,000 Yen (US$130.30)|
And per person for each segment from/to Japan for travel originating outside of Japan:
|Route (per person per sector flown)||Current fuel surcharge (applicable till July 31, 2019)||New fuel surcharge (applicable on/after August 1, 2019)|
|Japan – Korea, Far East Russia||USD 4||USD 6|
|Japan – East Asia (excluding Korea)||USD 18||USD 31|
|Japan – Guam, Philippines, Palau, Vietnam, Russia||USD 25||USD 37|
|Japan – Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Russia||USD 37||USD 55|
|Japan – Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka, Hawaii||USD 49||USD 74|
|Japan – North America||USD 86||USD 129|
|Japan – Europe||USD 86||USD 129|
|Japan – Middle East||USD 86||USD 129|
|Japan – Oceania||USD 86||USD 129|
If you’re looking at booking a flight with JAL soon, we recommend checking out this page of the airline’s website for a detailed breakdown of the surcharges you can expect to pay on the route you are going to fly.
In separate news, earlier this month Japan Airlines took delivery of its first A350 aircraft at the Airbus’ headquarters in Toulouse, France. The Japanese carrier is set to operate the new aircraft on its domestic Tokyo Haneda-Fukuoka route starting September 1 this year.