Airfares rise with fuel costsIt’s getting more...

Airfares rise with fuel costs

It’s getting more expensive to fly abroad as U.S. carriers -- following the lead of foreign airlines -- have imposed surcharges to cover the rising cost of jet fuel.

American Airlines earlier this month doubled and in some cases tripled its international fuel surcharges, raising them to $25 each way for transatlantic and transpacific tickets and to $15 each way to the Caribbean, Mexico and several other Latin American destinations.

United Airlines matched American’s surcharges in the Latin American and Pacific markets and also matched surcharges by the German airline Lufthansa on transatlantic routes.

Besides Lufthansa, a host of other foreign carriers have imposed new or increased existing fuel surcharges this year, some more than once.

Earlier this month, British Airways raised its surcharge to $17 each way for long-haul flights booked outside Europe, and Air France raised its charge to about $13.


Typical of the financial pressures cited by airline companies, American said that the rise in crude oil prices during the last year would add about $1.2 billion to its operating costs in 2004.

The airline also recently raised domestic fares twice, in $5 increments each way, according to spokesman Tim Wagner.

A train

trip to 1911

A vintage train tour with views of the El Dorado Valley and desert scenery around Boulder City, Nev., is being run on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 12.

The seven-mile, 45-minute trip uses 1911-era Pullman coaches refurbished by the Nevada State Railroad Museum, which is under development in Boulder City, 25 miles southeast of Las Vegas.

About 5,000 passengers have climbed aboard the diesel-powered train since it switched from monthly to weekend trips in late September, according to museum director Greg Corbin.

The train leaves four times a day, starting at 10 a.m., from a station at Boulder Highway and Yucca Street in Boulder City. Fares are $7 for adults, $6 for seniors 65 and up, and $4 for children under 12. For more information, call (702) 486-5933.

Tourists flock to reopened Lady Liberty

Visitors to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island are being advised to reserve tickets because tour volume has jumped nearly 24% since the statue reopened Aug. 3. Tours are often sold out by noon, said Edie Shea Hammond, spokeswoman for the Northeast Region of the National Park Service.

Reserve ferry and admission tickets at (866) 782-8834 or Admission is free, but the ferry from Manhattan or New Jersey costs $10 for adults, $4 for children ages 4 to 12. There’s also a $1.75 reservation fee.

Two statue tours are offered: a 40-minute promenade tour, which affords picture-taking views of New York Harbor, and the longer observatory tour, which adds a visit to the observation deck and a video. For more information, visit

Buying more

time in city

CityPass, which sells a single ticket covering admission to several attractions for nine days, has a new “Valid All Winter” program. Passes can be used Dec. 15 to March 31 in Boston, Philadelphia, New York and Seattle. See for details.

-- Compiled by

Jane Engle