From today, with the fuel benchmark in the low USD 40 range, every dollar of every fuel surcharge collected by every airline is theft.
None of these surcharges are remotely justifiable at these prices notwithstanding the AUD exchange rate.
The airlines will no doubt argue in some cases that the structure of their fuel price hedges involves penalties when the price goes down, as well as when it goes up, and exceeds the hedged price.
But that is a commercial decision. Robbing the customer for a bad hedge call is still theft.
Where is the ACCC in all of this? Or does it matter? The ACCC rolled over obscenely in allowing supermarket giants to link grocery sales to alleged petrol discounts, so its credibility in dealing with big business and consumer rights is forever damaged by that act of betrayal.