Will the war in Ukraine cause holiday surcharges this summer?
8th March 2022
The cost of aviation fuel since Vladimir Putin ordered the illegal invasion of Ukraine, certainly suggests holiday surcharges will be a feature this summer and that may continue into the 2023 ski season too.
Aviation fuel was at an all-time low in May 2020, with a gallon of fuel costing just $0.46, after the invasion, a gallon of aviation fuel has risen to $2.55, that’s an increase of 554%. Therefore, holiday surcharges are increasingly likely.
Holiday prices are set by tour operators often 18 months before the holidays operate, the calculations to arrive at the selling price are set based on exchange rates and airline costs, especially fuel.
Although holiday surcharges are very unpopular with consumers, they are legal under the Package Travel Regulations, which enables tour operators to increase holidays costs by up to 8%, even after a holiday has been booked.
Tour operators may ask you to pay a surcharge of up to a maximum of an extra 8% of the holiday cost. This is completely legal, but surcharges are tightly controlled by law (the Package Travel Regulations).
Companies can’t surcharge within 20 days of the departure date. ABTA members must absorb the first 2% of the holiday cost increases and they must state their right to surcharge in their terms and conditions. This surcharge must also work for the consumer too, so if fuel costs or currency decrease by more than 2% Tour Operators are obliged to provide refunds.
If the surcharge is more than 8% of the total cost of your holiday, the holiday company must offer the option of cancelling with a full refund of everything paid.
Why we choose the image of Putin above. It’s illegal in Russia for this image to be shared, it was used during the Sochi Winter Olympic games to highlight gay rights in Russia, which are virtually non-existent. We use this image still on our LGBT page on this website today.