Free = $461?? No wonder airlines have loyalty issues


I just booked a “free” 1-way ticket with Aeroplan from Sydney, Australia to Ottawa Canada. My free ticket cost $461. The fuel surcharge alone was over $300. Huh.
So I did the math. The plane I am flying on has 270 seats. Assuming that each seat is charged $300 for ‘fuel surcharge’, that’s $81,000. Will a jet flying from Sydney to Ottawa really be paying $81,000 extra in fuel?? What is a fuel surcharge, anyway? Shouldn’t the cost of fuel just be built into the price of a ticket?
I’ve been paying these fees for years, and they strike me as kind of a sleazy way to pretend that rates are lower than they are. Hard to build customer trust when they feel you’re constantly trying to pull one over on them…

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