Ukraine flight prices to London hiked by 700 PERCENT as airlines exploit terrified Britons

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Commercial airlines have been accused by MPs of “exploiting the vulnerable” by hiking up costs ahead of a possible Russian invasion. The surge in prices comes after the Foreign Office issued advice last Friday for British nationals to leave Ukraine immediately.

President Vladimir Putin has positioned more than 130,000 troops on the border of the Eastern European country, with the West braced for a Russian incursion into the neighbouring territory.

Intelligence agencies say Moscow has been strategically ready for conflict since Tuesday, and war could break out at any moment.

Last week, the starting price for a one-way ticket from Kiev to London was just £13.

But since the new Foreign Office advice, fees have been ramped up due to high demand.

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Government sources say flights from Kiev to London have been full since the travel warning.

With Ukraine having just a small tourism industry, the majority of the approximately 5,000 Britons in the country are either there for business or because they are married to Ukrainian nationals.

Prices to leave Ukraine and fly to the UK capital now have a starting price of £124 if booked for the following day.

RyanAir is currently charging £135 for flights departing Kiev tomorrow, while Ukrainian International is charging £222.

The cost of flying in the opposite direction remains much lower, with RyanAir charging just £29 for flights leaving London Stansted on Friday.

Slamming airlines for the price increases, Labour MP Graham Stringer, who sits on the foreign affairs select committee, told Express.co.uk: “It’s appalling that they should try to exploit the vulnerability of people who are in a potential war zone.

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“People have no choice, it is simply exploiting a terrible situation.”

Meanwhile, Conservative grandee and former military man, Sir Iain Duncan Smith urged airlines to reconsider.

RyanAir have been contacted for comment.

The airline’s Chief Executive Michael O’Leary said his company was fulfilling its duty to fly passengers in and out of the country for as long as was possible.

Some airlines have already scrapped flights due to fears of war, reducing the available routes out of the country.

Mr O’Leary said: “People need to get home and people want to leave and fly abroad to the EU – airlines have to provide that service.

“It is our duty and obligation to support the people of Ukraine as long as there is no war or missiles flying there.”

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office declined to comment on the price rises.

Last Friday, a spokesperson for the department said: “The safety and security of British nationals is our top priority, which is why we have updated our travel advice.

“We urge British nationals in Ukraine to leave now via commercial means while they remain available.”



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