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WATCH FOR HIDDEN FEES

The government has been checking air fares, and it doesn't like what it has found: yet another reason for consumers to be cautious when shopping for airline tickets over the Internet.

When the U.S. Department of Transportation went Web browsing, it found fares displayed on "a number of Web sites" that didn't give the honest bottom line. The sites in question mentioned that a fuel surcharge would be assessed in addition to the stated fare. The department noted that the surcharge is often mentioned on a separate page or in a footnote, and the amount is often not revealed until the consumer selects an itinerary.

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