Fuel surcharges are a part of an airline fare that come on top of the ticket price. It sits right in-between a ticket charge and a government-imposed charge (such as a departure tax).
Travel agents do not get a commission for it – the airline receives 100%. It matters for award tickets since many most frequent flyer programs have added it to the redemption charges.
Usually ITA Matrix allows you to simply look up YR or YQ. This is the best tool I know and it has matched charges pretty much all the time.
No fuel surcharge – just a $12 departure tax. So where do the $147 in charges come from? I called BA and they explained that MH is charging a fuel surcharge and that my information is simply incorrect 🙁
But wait – it can get even worse:
So you are paying ~$20 more for 'just the fuel surcharges' with BA Avios on Malaysia Airlines, plus you pay 10,000 miles.
Something is clearly off how BA calculates fuel surcharges for MH.
I priced out MLE-KUL in economy using MH Enrich and it came to 13,750 miles + $97 – still not really what you'd expect.