Expats, families and friends face paying more for flights in 2012

by Ray Clancy on December 23, 2011

Airlines using any airport in EU will pay higher fees as a result of new green tax

Expats and their families and friends all face paying more to see each other as a new green tax means that any airline using an airport in the European Union will be subject to higher fees.

The extra cost is set to be passed on to customers from 01 January and could mean an estimated £21 added to the price of a return flight to the United States. For a trip to Australia the emissions tax could be as much as £30 per flight or £60 per return journey.

The new tax is part of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme which is designed to curb emissions from aircraft jet engines of carbon dioxide. All airlines will be required to buy a ‘permit to pollute’ to cover the cost of their carbon emissions plus extra costs if they exceed their emissions limit.

On top of this the UK government is imposing extra taxes on air travel from April 2012 that will also add to the cost of flights to and from the country. The Air Passenger Duty will drive up the costs of flights.

From April, families flying to destinations in Air Passenger Duty Band B, which include New York, California and Florida, will see APD alone increase by £5 to £65 per person in economy and by £10 to £130 in all other classes.

Middle level long distance destinations of 4,000 to 6,000 miles under Band C, such as the Caribbean or Cape Town, will see the tax rise in economy by £6 to £81 per person and by £12 to £162 in all other classes. Economy flights to Australia will rise by £7 to £92 per person.

The Government has announced that it intends to raise £3.8 billion a year from APD by 2016, up from £2.2 billion now. If passenger numbers fall the tax is likely to be raised even higher.

A recent survey conducted by the travel website Expedia found that 88% of British passengers feel that APD unfairly targets travellers and 29% said they are abandoning their travel plans because they can no longer afford to fly.

Other governments have introduced similar taxes and then back tracked because of the effect on passenger numbers. In the Netherlands the government introduced a similar tax in 2008 but reversed the decision a year later. The tax had raised €300 million, but an estimated €1 billion had been lost because of a sharp fall in users.

Belgium, Denmark and Norway have reversed equivalent taxes in recent years, while the Irish government has reduced its tax to €3.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

peter x January 3, 2012 at 2:37 pm

and the money goes where? in some government assholes pocket, which of course eliminates the carbon emissions, yeh

another scam

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