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Brits back calls for a cut in Air Passenger Duty

Almost 300,000 Brits have got involved in a campaign calling for Air Passenger Duty (APD) to be cut or abolished.

The campaign, which encourages Britons to register their opposition with their local MP, was launched earlier this year by an alliance of airlines and tour operators. Campaigners head to the Fair Tax on Flying website, register their details and a template email is automatically sent to their local MP stating their disapproval at the ‘unacceptable’ levels of tax paid by travellers flying from the UK.

More than 200,000 Britons have contacted their MP since the website was launched in the summer. A further 80,000 non-UK residents have emailed the Treasury to protest against the tax. A rise in APD has been criticised for pricing ordinary British families out of flying and putting off foreign holidaymakers from visiting the UK as they have to pay the tax on their return journey.

APD increased by 8% in April, costing a family of four travelling to Europe £52 in tax, while those flying further afield are hit with higher fees. A family of four heading to New York will have to pay a massive £260 in APD.

Those jetting off to the Caribbean must pay £324 and those heading to Australia are hit with a £368 tax bill. These figures are double for anyone flying in premium economy, business-class or first class cabins.

More than 115,000 emails have been sent regarding the hot topic to Conservative MPs alone. Prime Minister David Cameron has received 460 emails from his constituents and the opposition leader Ed Miliband received 148 emails in what is being claimed as one of the biggest social media campaigns ever co-ordinated. The Fair Tax on Flying lobby group also found that 17 MPs had been sent more than 1,000 emails each. Those travelling overseas might wish to take out travel insurance.

Date Created: 05 October 2012

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