Saga will not introduce fuel surcharges

Increases in fuel surcharges will lead to a rise in the overall costs of future cruise bookings, featured the Telegraph.

Excess charges of £4 per day have been blamed upon a rise in the price of Brent crude oil from $50 to more than $100 since last spring, leading to a rise in the operating costs of numerous cruise companies.

Existing bookings will not be affected by the increase, but for All Leisure Group‘s ships Voyages of Discovery cruises after 30 June and Swan Hellenic after 22 June passengers will be required to pay up to a maximum of £152 per person extra depending on the length of the cruise.

Passengers of Cruise and Maritime Voyages are already required to pay up to a cap of £100 extra for their time on-board.

P&O Cruises and Cunard Line currently cap their excess cost at £150 per person, while Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has been charging 5.5% of the total fare, with no cap on the total cost, leading to criticisms.

A statement from Fred.Olsen said the surcharge had been introduced as a result of the continuing increase in the price of oil, which has risen considerably since the publication of the 2011/2012 Fred. Olsen Cruises brochure.

The increase applies to all bookings made on departures in the line’s Worldwide Second Edition Brochure, except the 2012 Grand Voyage cruises.

The line confirmed that if oil drops back down to £45 or below averaged across the month before departure then the passenger will receive the money back in the form of on-board credits.

Fred.Olsen will also be applying a retrospective levy of 4.5% on all bookings made before 23 December for cruise departures from 1 April.

Further confusion was caused over the fact that passengers in more expensive cabins will be required to pay more.

Saga confirmed it will not be introducing fuel surcharges.

A Saga spokesman said supplements were “destroying consumer confidence” and added that other lines should “hedge their fuel prices and should be able to price their products accordingly” instead of pushing on the cost to the customer.