BA says to hike fuel surcharge again due to high oil prices

British Airways will lift its fuel surcharge for longhaul flights for the second time this year, again blaming the move on surging oil prices, the carrier said Tuesday.

"Due to the high price of oil, British Airways has today had to announce an increase in its fuel surcharge on longhaul travel from Friday, April 8, 2011," it said in a statement.

"There will be no increase in the fuel surcharge on domestic and shorthaul flights."

BA, which has merged with Spanish peer Iberia to save costs, added that it would increase the surcharge by 10 pounds (11.5 euros, 16 dollars) for a single longhaul ticket.

This week, global oil prices jumped to two-and-a-half-year highs due to the continuing unrest in Libya and positive economic data in the United States, which is the world's biggest consumer of crude.

Higher oil prices ramp up the cost of kerosene, or jet fuel, which weighs on airlines' earnings.

"It's with real regret that we are having to increase our longhaul fuel surcharge," added BA chief financial officer Nick Swift on Tuesday.

"As customers will know from the price at the petrol pumps, the cost of fuel has continued to rise significantly over the past three months.

"For us, fuel now represents over one third of our costs and particularly affects our longhaul flights.

"We are very aware of the wider economic pressures on our customers at the moment and we will bear the vast majority of the recent fuel price rise ourselves to keep this increase in surcharge to a minimum," Swift added.

BA had already hiked the fuel surcharge in February.

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