Emirates increases fuel surcharges on award tickets … again

Mar 16, 2022

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If you think we just reported on this two weeks ago, that’s because we did. Emirates Skywards has increased the cash cost for an award ticket once again, increasing the fees and fuel surcharges you’ll pay when booking an award flight.

After seeing fees go up by as much as £191 ($250) on some routes last month, we are now seeing another £138 ($180) tacked onto tickets on those same routes this month. Here’s a closer look at the changes and what they mean for your travels.

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Emirates increases fuel surcharges again

Emirates Airbus A380
(Photo by Eric Rosen/The Points Guy)

Last month, we reported that Emirates Skywards had increased fuel surcharges on award redemption tickets. This came in the form of increased costs for “YQ” (the industry notation for fuel surcharges) on the cash portion of tickets.

Increasing these costs is an unfortunate reversal of what we saw in May 2020, when Emirates slashed these fees considerably. The increase is likely due to a jump in fuel prices worldwide, which has affected everyone from commuters to airlines.

Last month, we reported that fuel surcharges had jumped as much as £191 on some routes. Here’s a sample flight from that article, flying from Dulles International Airport (IAD) to Dubai International Airport (DXB).

Emirates award rates
(Screenshot courtesy of Emirates.com)

Here is the same route with the new pricing, which was noticed this week.

(Screenshot courtesy of Emirates.com)

Award fees in economy went up by £23 ($30), while the fees for flying in business class or first class jumped by £138 ($180).

For the Emirates fifth-freedom flight from Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) to Athens International Airport (ATH), here is the pricing from our update in February.

Emirates EWR-ATH award
(Screenshot from emirates.com)

Here is the new pricing, now that Emirates has increased fuel surcharges and award fees once again.

(Screenshot courtesy of Emirates.com)

Flying in economy, the cash portion of the ticket has increased by £2.29. In business and first-class, the cash portion increased by £14. These increases are obviously not as drastic as the flights to Emirates’ main hub in Dubai, but still worth keeping in mind as you plan your travels.

Related: How to avoid fuel surcharges on award travel

Bottom line

Emirates has once again increased its fuel charges, making award booking fees more expensive than they were just last month.

And that’s on top of the fact we saw an increase just last month. Both ANA and British Airways have also increased their fuel surcharges on award tickets recently, given that the global price of oil is going up.

We’re hopeful that these fees will go back down when the price of oil goes down. But if the price of oil continues to climb, we may see these fees increase again and see other airlines increasing their fees, as well.

Featured photo of an Emirates A380 plane by Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg / Getty Images

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