Good news could lie ahead for families flying on holiday from the UK after a campaign called Scrap the Tax on Family Flights launched in the hopes of abolishing UK Air Passenger Duty (APD) for children under twelve.
The move has been backed by the Prime Minister, David Cameron and it is currently being considered for inclusion in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement on December 3, ahead of next year’s general election.
The UK is one of only a handful of European countries that charge APD and the UK pays on average five times more passenger departure tax than countries like France and Austria that charge APD. The UK has the highest departure tax anywhere in the world which is currently bad news for holidaymakers and businesses in the Britain.
APD currently adds between £13 and £97 to the cost of a flight from the UK, depending on the mileage of your journey. Scrapping this could mean that a family of four could save almost £200 on a long haul flight from the UK. The group behind the campaign A Fair Tax on Flying argues that as children are exempt from all other taxes it is not fair that they should be charged APD. The rate of APD has risen by 160 per cent since it was introduced 20 years ago but for the first time the government has promised to cut APD tax on long haul flights next year, with a view to scrapping it altogether in the near future.
Abolition of the tax would be great news for families going on holiday and for the travel industry in Britain who can now be more competitive. With families already struggling to afford family holidays outside of school term times due to rising costs of flights and accommodation at peak times, this could make a real difference to people wishing to take their kids on holiday abroad.
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