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Last Updated: Wednesday, 22 March 2006, 16:48 GMT
Virgin Atlantic raises fuel levy
Virgin Atlantic Airbus A340_600
Fuel accounts for about 25% of Virgin's operating costs
Virgin Atlantic plans to increase the fuel surcharge on its tickets sold in the UK to help offset the continuing impact of high oil prices.

The airline's surcharge will rise from 60 ($104) for a round trip to 70, effective from Friday 24 March.

"Our fuel costs continue to be at all-time highs," said the carrier's chief executive Steve Ridgway.

The last time Virgin raised its fuel levy was in September 2005, when 12 was put on the cost of a round trip.

The latest rise comes despite attempts by the airline to hedge its fuel requirements by buying ahead at a fixed price.

"But, with increasing prices, we have now had to hedge at much higher price levels," said Steve Ridgway.

"The fuel surcharge has only been recovering about half of the true increases we have suffered in recent times."

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