New Credit Card Surcharge Rules for Airlines: What are they?

1 September 2016

New credit card surcharge restrictions come into force for large merchants on September 1st.

Paying extra fees for the privilege of using a credit card (when in reality you’re probably already paying upwards of 17% interest on your ongoing debt, if you have any) is a bugbear for many Australian consumers. But it’s set to be a smaller bugbear, with the government’s new Competition and Consumer Amendment (Payment Surcharges) Bill 2015 legislation effectively banning excessive payment surcharges by federally-regulated businesses.  Such as:


Qantas has announced that the credit card surcharge will change from a $7 flat fee for domestic/trans-Tasman flights and $30 for an international flight, to 1.3% per ticket on the purchase price (capped at $11 for domestic and $70 for international flights).

As always, there are payment options that don’t incur a surcharge:

  • POLi
  • BPAY for bookings made at least 7 days before departure;
  • Qantas UATP; or
  • Credit voucher

New credit card surcharges announced

Virgin Australia

Virign Australia has announced that its credit card surcharge will change from a $7.70 flat fee for domestic/trans-Tasman flights to:

  • 1.3% charge for credit card payments
  • 0.6% charge for debit card payments
  • $5 per passenger, per booking, for Paypal

For short-haul international flights the Paypal fee will be $7 and for long-haul international flights the Paypal fee will be $23.


Jetstar has announced that its booking and service fees were being reduced from $8.50 domestic / $12.50 international flights per person per flight to a 1.06% surcharge on credit cards, 0.75% for PayPal and 0.48% surcharge for debit cards.


Tigerair has announced that its $8.50 credit card fee has changed as follows:

  • MasterCard Credit: 1.25% of total booking value
  • Debit MasterCard: 0.86% of total booking value
  • Visa Credit : 1.33% of total booking value
  • Visa Debit: 0.88% of total booking value

Tigerair will also introduce the payment method POLi from 1 September to continue to provide customers with a fee-free form of payment.

Ticketmaster has announced that the cost of purchasing tickets will not now vary between different forms of payment.

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