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(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
El Al said Tuesday that beginning June 5 it would impose a fuel surcharge on all bonus tickets due to rising costs.
Rami Levi, the airline's assistant chief executive officer, pointed out that the price of fuel has risen from approximately $10 a barrel in 1999 to almost $70 a barrel today and, as a result, airlines around the world began imposing a fuel surcharge on bonus tickets, something that El Al has refrained from doing, until now.
An El Al spokeswoman, said the carrier was proud of the fact that it had never imposed fuel surcharges on holders of bonus tickets, however, the steep rise of jet-fuel over the last number of years has forced the company to begin charging all passengers the additional fee.
El Al's bonus program grants frequent flyers a bonus ticket if they have accumulated at least 75 percent of the requisite points to earn a free flight and according to the carrier's Web site, no surcharge will be levied on bonus tickets issued through June 4 provided that 75% of the bonus ticket was paid for using frequent flyer points.
Like most airlines, El Al has imposed fuel surcharges that vary depending upon the destination of the passenger with longer flights bringing higher fees, since oil prices spurted to record levels over the last few years.