Air passenger duty has gone up today in the UK, with campaigners claiming the tax will add hundreds of pounds onto the cost of hard working families’ annual getaway.
The APD increase – confirmed by the Chancellor in the Budget – means that people buying tickets from April 1 will incur a new increased APD levy on flights leaving the UK.
A family of four flying in economy class to Florida will now pay £268 in APD, while a family of four flying to the Caribbean will pay £332.
Data produced by the campaign A Fair Tax on Flying showed that more than 200,000 people contacted their MP about the issue.
Simon Buck, CEO of the British Air Transport Association, said: “The Government has hit hard-working families where it hurts with many families having to pay hundreds of pounds in air passenger taxes on their annual getaway.
“It’s not good enough to continue increase Air Passenger Duty when the clear economic evidence shows that it both damages the UK economy and adds hundreds of pounds onto the annual tax bill of many families who fly overseas every year.”
Despite lobbying from the UK aviation industry, the duty on long-haul flights has increased by €2.35 (£2), however the tax on short-haul remains at €15.20 (£13).
APD rose 8% last year and the UK treasury has said previously that it plans to keep future rises in line with inflation.
The controversial tax, which has been scrapped in some other European countries, is forecast to rise 3.6% year-on-year, raising €3.4 billion in 2013-14 up to €4.5 billion by 2017-18.
A recent study by PwC concluded that the damaging economic impact of the APD means the UK government’s receipts from the duty are outweighed by its losses on other taxes.
There are four bands of APD, depending on the distance of the flight. Band A (0-2000 miles) £13; Band B (2001-4000 miles) £67; Band C (4001-6000 miles) £83; Band D (6000 miles+) £94.