MANILA, Philippines — Philippine Airlines (PAL) and budget carrier Cebu Pacific agreed to conform with the directive of the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) to remove the word “fuel surcharge” on their airline tickets for both domestic and international flights.
PAL, Cebu Pacific as well as other international and local carriers currently operating in the Philippines have received the order to cease using of the word “fuel surcharge” citing current oil prices in the world market and the need to show that they prioritize the welfare of its customers.
“Our I.T. team is already hard at work removing all words that contains the letters F.U.E.L.S.U.R.C.H.A.R.G.E. from our ticketing and online booking systems,” said PAL president Jaena Kuh. “Our customers will no longer see that word from here on out.”
Cebu Pacific, meanwhile, said it has already removed the word “fuel surcharge” on their tickets since January 9 in compliance to the order.
“As per CAB’s order, we already removed that horrible word and transferred the cost of fuel to other items on your ticket,” said Cebu Pacific President Glance Lokongwei, noting that its removal allows them to charge more for other items on the ticket in order to make up for it.
Lokongwei also reiterated that such actions are necessary in order for the company to amass the funds needed to pay for the P52 million fine that the CAB has imposed on them for their Christmas snafu.
“We will charge higher base fare, security surcharge, air passenger departure tax or web admin fee,” he added. “Our web admins deserve to be highly compensated for the hard work that they did removing any trace of the word ‘fuel surcharge’ from our websites.”
The CAB had earlier warned it would impose sanctions on domestic and international airlines that would still bear the word “fuel surcharge” on passengers’ tickets.
“The government must always project the image that our riding public is our utmost concern and that they deserve better than these huge corporations,” said CAB executive director Caramelo Armesa. “But as always, there will always be loopholes that would allow these airlines to bilk its passengers while providing less.”
He added, “Airline passengers could expect higher air fares starting the end of the week with the removal of the word ‘fuel surcharge’ on international and domestic flights.”