Fuel surcharge coming in January for B.C. Ferries' customers

Current diesel pricing will lead to a new 3.5-per cent fuel surcharge on most ferry routes beginning Jan. 17, according to B.C. Ferries.

Spokeswoman Deborah Marshall told the News Bulletin it was not known how long the surcharge would be in place but the company has had fuel surcharges on and off over the last several years and they are not permanent.

B.C. Ferries said it is currently paying about 14 cents per litre more than the fuel price B.C. Ferries commissioner Gord Macatee approved, that is included in ferry fares.

"In determining price caps – maximum average fares – for the current four year performance term, [Macatee] established a regulatory set price for fuel for the current year of $0.952 per litre. In November 2013, monthly fuel prices reached a new high for this year of $1.09 per litre,” B.C. Ferries said, in a press release.

B.C. Ferries President and CEO Mike Corrigan said he understands this is an unpopular move and the company is taking steps to keep fuel costs down.

"We are doing everything we can to keep our fuel costs as low as possible, including building new ships with [liquefied natural gas] capability,” Corrigan said. “We have waited as long as we can to implement a surcharge, however we must act now as it is clear that fuel prices are unlikely to decline in the foreseeable future.”

Ferry runs from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert and Prince Rupert to Haida Gwaii will not be hit with the surcharge.

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