Understanding Fuel Surcharges

Discussion in 'Newbies' started by rodeojones, May 12, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    I am trying to book my first international award flight to Europe and am confused over the discrepancy in fuel surcharges.

    I am trying to book MileSAAver Off Peak awards from SEA-FCO and for two people the taxes and fuel charges are $800+. The exact same dates from SEA-FLR are only $280+.

    The routing from SEA-FCO are via LHR on BA. The routing for SEA-FLR are through TXL on AB.

    Is the huge discrepancy due to the routing via LHR on BA? I have read about massive fuel surcharges on BA/LHR and am thinking this is why.

    Am I correct?
    Are there any creative ways to use AA miles to FLR bypassing LHR completely?

    Thanks in advance for the help
     
  2. downhillcrasher

    downhillcrasher Gold Member

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    Yes, this is entirely due to BA surcharges, use Air Berlin to bypass them.
     
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  3. newbluesea
    Original Member

    newbluesea Gold Member

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    Yes.. fly AA or IB to MAD or BCN and then IB on to Florence.

    IB does add YQ charges but they are significantly lower than the ridiculous BA charges.
     
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  4. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    Thanks for the help thus far. I misspoke above..my goal is to fly into Rome, not Florence. I will look into the above options and hopefully Rome will work too.
     
  5. sharris503

    sharris503 Silver Member

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    Flying AA to LHR and then BA to FCO would also lower fees. And try to avoid routing through LHR on return flight home. Departure tax out of LHR to the US is steep.
     
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  6. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    If I were to piece together legs with partner airlines do I call AA to book those flights?
     
  7. sharris503

    sharris503 Silver Member

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    That depends on which partners you use. If the partner can be booked on AA.com then you should be able to get it to work online.
     
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  8. thesterlingtraveler

    thesterlingtraveler Gold Member

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    AA does fly ORD-FCO. Might want to consider it as well, if you'd rather not connect in Europe. However, last time I checked it was 767 service so not the best AA product.
     
  9. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    Thanks for the advice. Tried routing via SEA-ORD-FCO and it routes me through LHR and the fees were $192.00 for two people on this one way. I booked it using AA's multi city tool...maybe i'm not doing this correctly

    I am quickly realizing that this is not as easy as my last trip...SEA-HNL using Avios. :) Trying to maximize fees and travel time by doing your own routing is quite difficult when you have never done it before.

    I may need to turn to a booking service. :p
     
  10. sharris503

    sharris503 Silver Member

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    What dates are you looking at? I'm sure there are people here willing to help.
     
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  11. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Just search ORD - FCO first; then add the one way SEA - ORD. If it is routing you through LHR then most likely the ORD - FCO flight you are looking for is not available or something like that.

    Also have you looked @ JFK - FCO. According to wikipedia, AA flies that route (Along w/ORD seasonally) . http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonardo_da_Vinci-Fiumicino_Airport
     
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  12. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    I know they would and I am grateful for that. But I would really like to learn how to book awards and simply looking for some pointers.
     
  13. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    I have looked at JFK and it routes me thru LHR. Yet if I went to FLR, it routes me thru Germany. I know that that Air Berlin flies into FCO and where I am having some hiccups.
     
  14. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Try ORD - FCO ... and see if AA gives you space. ORD - TXL is AB.
     
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  15. newbluesea
    Original Member

    newbluesea Gold Member

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    Are you limiting your searches to JFK and ORD?? (NE gateways)
    AB flies to DUS from MIA. plus IB flies to BCN and MAD from both MIA and DFW.
     
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  16. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    Routes me thru LHR. Taxes for two are $918.00 r/t. Yet if I go one way (ORD-FCO), the taxes for two are only $178.00. It's as @pdxtraveltips stated...it's returning from Europe via LHR where the taxes are super high.

    So now I will figure out some routing going home by bypassing LHR.

    Thnx for the ideas thus far everyone. It is greatly appreciated.
     
  17. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    I have been yes. I will play with some of your recommendations.

    Thanks for the help!
     
  18. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    So I tried MIA-DUS and it routes me MIA-EWR-JFK-DUS or (MIA-LGA-JFK-DUS) and all get me there with very little taxes!!

    I noticed that I am getting routed thru JFK and for kicks and giggles tried JFK-DUS and viola...availability!! And for two tix only $5.00!! I swear I tried this routing yesterday and all routed me via LHR so maybe this just came available, not sure.

    DUS-FCO on AB/NIKI is $142.00 one way for two. Ouch..

    **So I am starting to get the idea and am piecing it together. Once I get all my legs together and have all the info. written down, my understanding is I call AA and feed them the info for $25.00. Correct!?

    And my basic routing rules for the AA Off Peak awards is I can't be in one city for more the 23 hours. Right!? That is the main routing rule I need to keep in mind if I am correct.

    This is starting to make a little more sense...I can't tell everyone how much I appreciate your ideas and help. It is so rewarding to work through the problems and begin to see it make sense.
     
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  19. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    if JFK - DUS work, then JFK - DUS - FCO will work ... w/o the $142.00 just pay the taxes/fees for FCO/DUS

    yes

    always work the TPAC/TATL first. then add in your connectors
     
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  20. sharris503

    sharris503 Silver Member

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    So I have played around with this a little bit since I got home. I can pull up the routing no problem SEA - JFK or MIA -DUS - FCO. Each time it requires an additional 10k AA points for the DUS to FCO segment. That makes me think the problem may not be stopover vs. layover. There are certainly flights available from DUS to FCO that are not stopovers but AA still charges the extra 10k. That means there could be a couple of problems, (1) AB does not offer a published fare between SEA and FCO or (2) you are exceeding MPM. In which case it will always book out as 2 awards.
     
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  21. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    That is exactly what was happening when I tried.
     
  22. sharris503

    sharris503 Silver Member

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    The good news is for that routing the taxes and fees are $120 r/t. The other option may be to route via MAD on Iberia. Fees will be higher but you will likely save the 10k in points.
     
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  23. rodeojones

    rodeojones Silver Member

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    Excellent point and something to consider. :)

    Thanks for help pdx...
     

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