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An Update on Which Airlines Charge Fuel Surcharges on Award Redemptions

I’ve (finally) updated my chart of which airlines charge fuel surcharges on award redemptions, and I thought it was worth noting 3 changes:

– Aeroplan now charges surcharges on most redemption partners.

– ANA previously did not charge fuel surcharges on US Airways flights. However, they are now charging fuel surcharges when US Airways bundles it into the fare (for you geeks out there, US Airways does not add a YQ fuel surcharge, but they do bundle it into the fare on TransAtlantic flights). So ANA is now charging surcharges on US Airways on Europe and Israel flights. To add to the confusion, if you book on the ANA website, the surcharges they show for US Airways flights are wrong — you’ll have to call the airline to get the correct amount (which, as of right now, is about $305 for Europe flights on US Airways).

– JAL charges a fuel surcharge if the partner does, but not if the partner airline does not. That means you can redeem using their mileage-based chart on AA, LAN and Emirates without fuel surcharges. As Lucky points out here, there are a few good deals out there if you have enough miles in Starwood to transfer to JAL, especially on Emirates from New York and Toronto to Dubai.

– Delta now charges a fuel surcharge on Skyteam partner airlines.

If you want to see whether an airline charges a fuel surcharge, search for a flight on ITA Software, then click on the fare. You’ll see something like this:

YQ is the fuel surcharge. YR is also sometimes used to denote a fuel surcharge.

If you have any corrections to the chart below, let me know.

AIRLINE ALLIANCE WHERE THEY DO ADD A FUEL SURCHARGE ON AWARD TICKETS WHERE THEY DO NOT ADD A FUEL SURCHARGE ON AWARD TICKETS
AIR CANADA STAR Adria, Air Canada, ANA, Asiana, Austrian, bmi, LOT Polish, Lufthansa, TAP, and THAI ALL OTHER STAR ALLIANCE PARTNERS
ALASKA AIRLINES NONE BRITISH AIRWAYS ALL ALASKA AIRLINES FLIGHTS AND OTHER PARTNERS
AMERICAN AIRLINES ONEWORLD BRITISH AIRWAYS, IBERIA ALL OTHER AMERICAN AIRLINES FLIGHTS AND OTHER ONEWORLD PARTNERS
DELTA AIR LINES SKYTEAM DELTA FLIGHTS NOT ORIGINATING FROM THE US OR ASIA; ALL PARTNER FLIGHTS ALL DELTA FLIGHTS ORIGINATING IN THE US OR ASIA
SOUTHWEST AIRLINES NONE NONE SOUTHWEST/AIRTRAN
UNITED AIRLINES STAR NONE ALL FLIGHTS ON UNITED AND WITH PARTNERS
US AIRWAYS STAR NONE ALL FLIGHTS ON US AIRWAYS AND WITH PARTNERS
ALL OTHER INTERNATIONAL AIRLINES ADD FUEL SURCHARGES TO AWARD TICKETS EXCEPT:
ANA STAR ALL ANA FLIGHTS AND PARTNERS EXCEPT AIR CANADA, AIR NEW ZEALAND, UNITED (THO THEY DO CHARGE ON UNITED FLIGHTS TO THE PACIFIC) (THEY NOW CHARGE A SURCHARGE ON US AIRWAYS WHEN US AIRWAYS ADDS A SURCHARGE INTO THE FARE AS A "Q" SURCHARGE - PRIMARILY ON TRANSATLANTIC FLIGHTS) AIR CANADA, AIR NEW ZEALAND, UNITED (EXCEPT PACIFIC), US AIRWAYS WHERE US AIRWAYS DOES NOT CHARGE A FUEL SURCHARGE (PRIMARILY NON-EUROPE FLIGHTS)
BRITISH AIRWAYS ONEWORLD ALL BA FLIGHTS AND ONEWORLD PARTNERS, EXCEPT LAN AND AMERICAN LAN, AA, AER LINGUS, and ALASKA
EUROBONUS (SAS) STAR ALL PARTNERS EXCEPT SAS, BLUE1 and WIDEROE SAS, BLUE1 and WIDEROE FLIGHTS
FLYINGBLUE SKYTEAM ALL EXCEPT DELTA FLIGHTS ORIGINATING IN THE US DELTA FLIGHTS ORIGINATING IN THE US
JAL ONEWORLD ALL AIRLINES THAT INCLUDE A FUEL SURCHARGE AA AND LAN
LAN ONEWORLD NONE ALL LAN AND PARTNER FLIGHTS
SOUTH AFRICAN STAR NONE ALL SOUTH AFRICAN AND PARTNER FLIGHTS
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16 Comments.

  1. Err… Not sure if this counts as a correction, but I don’t think Continental exists anymore (or, at least it’s not called Continental!)

  2. I don’t think British has fuel surcharges for Alaskan Air.

  3. Thanks – great info for us ‘newbies’ to have. Helps me understand one reason why fares are so different among the airlines.

  4. I am searching on ITA for flights from PHI to KIX. I am getting large fuel surcharges on Delta flights, which seems inconsistent with your post. Ideas?

    • I am also getting large fuel surcharges on PHI to KIX from US Airways, which is also inconsistent with your chart…

      • United is also charging a large fuel surcharge. What gives? So far I am 0/3 with the chart.

        • Hi. This chart is for who charges fuel surcharges on award redemptions, not for when you pay for the flight.

          • Thanks for the quick reply!

            In your post, you say “If you want to see whether an airline charges a fuel surcharge, search for a flight on ITA Software, then click on the fare. You’ll see something like this:”

            I am now confused why you tell people to do that if that does not tell you whether or not they will charge full surcharges for redemptions.

          • For airlines where they charge a fuel surcharge on partners, you can see the fuel surcharge amount in ITA.

          • Ah, I understand now. Thanks!

  5. Jared – how did you find this info? I was unable to find any stated policy on the official websites for a few airlines. I am particularly interested in United, American and Delta.

  6. I’m seeing large charges on AY tickets bought with AA miles

  7. For Aeroplan you need to update your YQ scam charges chart: Flights on US,UA,TK,CA, don’t have any YQ on rewards. MS,OS,LX,SN,SQ,LO may or may not have YQ or minimal YQ. Everybody else has them.

  8. SQ Singapore airlines charges fuel surchages on all award tickets….very expensive.

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