BC Ferries said on Tuesday it is removing fuel rebates as it tackles the high cost of fuel.
The fuel rebates will be removed on June 27, 2018. Rebates of 2.9 per cent for the major and minor routes and 1.9 per cent for the northern routes have been in place since spring 2016.
This equates means those on the Metro Vancouver-Vancouver Island route will pay 50 cents more per person and $1.70 more for a vehicle. On the a variety of northern and other minor routes, the increase will be 30 cents for an adult and 70 cents per vehicle.
According to the company, BC Ferries uses a fuel rebate/surcharge mechanism to manage the volatility in the price of fuel. When fuel prices are lower, BC Ferries passes lower fuel prices on to customers through a fuel rebate. When fuel prices are higher, BC Ferries charges a fuel surcharge specifically designed to cover the additional cost of fuel.
The company said it does not benefit financially from the mechanism.
“Over the past 14 years, we’ve had fuel surcharges, fuel rebates and periods with neither, depending on the market price of diesel fuel, so over the years it has basically been neutral for our customers,” Mark Collins, BC Ferries’ president and CEO said in a statement.
“We know that the affordability of travel is important to our customers, and we use fuel deferral accounts and fuel hedging as tools to help reduce the impact that fluctuating fuel prices have on the cost of ferry travel.”
Transportation Minister Claire Trevena said in May she was disappointed that BC Ferries had planned on removing the rebate and the government was willing to work with the company to avoid an increase.
With files from The Canadian Press