Aviation industry calls for scrapping of APD

The UK’s leading airlines are urging the government to scrap Air Passenger Duty – the tax which they claim is ruining the aviation industry.

Air Passenger Duty, or APD, has been the subject of heated debate between members of the aviation industry and the government for months. The government is planning to push ahead with plans to increase the tax, which would lead to large charges for British families on long-haul flights.

The APD increases, which come into effect on 1 April, will mean that a family of four will pay £368 in tax for a trip to Australia and £264 for flights to America. “These endless cumulative increases in APD are pricing families out of flying – both from and to the UK,” said easyJet, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Ryanair in a joint a statement. .

“That means fewer visitors to the UK, which destroys jobs in our tourism, aviation and hospitality industries - and chokes off opportunities for young people at a time of exceptional youth unemployment.””

This first round of APD hikes is just the start of the government’s plans for the tax. It was wants to raise the duty by 48% by 2016 .

By the time of the last APD increases, a family of four would be paying £440 in tax for flights to the Caribbean, and £500 in tax for a trip to Australia.

As well as airlines’ opposition to APD, the World Travel and Tourism Council has revealed that scrapping the tax could create up to 91,000 jobs and add £4.2 billion to the economy by next year. “The UK imposes the highest aviation taxes in the world, and keeps on increasing them without any analysis whatever of their overall economic impact,” the airlines’ statement continued. “We are exporting economic growth, and jobs, to competitor countries. How much longer must this madness go on?” If you are planning a trip abroad this year, remember to shop around for travel insurance to ensure you find the best deal.

Date Created: 23 March 2012

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