Virgin Atlantic and ‘unjust’ APD

Virgin Atlantic has ramped up its fight against Air Passenger Duty by ‘waiving’ the tax on its new flights to Cancun.

Speaking in Mexico at the launch of the Cancun service, Sir Richard Branson said Virgin would be taking positive action against one of the worlds highest aviation taxes.

The carrier estimates that the government will earn almost £600 million in APD charges during the two peak flying months of July and August alone!

It will hold an ‘APD free’ sale of tickets during a limited period to promote the new route and highlight what the airline considers the ‘arbitrary ‘system that places Cancun in a more expensive tax bracket than Hawaii.

During his speech Branson said that “In Olympic year it is obscene for the treasury to be taking £10 million pounds every day from visitors and British holidaymakers”.

The John Proctor Travel view

We all accept that the recession has had a huge impact on government finances and that tax revenues are falling well short of government projections. However, it does appear to many in the travel industry that once again, travel seems to be a ‘soft target’ for the chancellor.

In some cases airport taxes seem to be a disproportionate amount when comparing the tax amount with the actual air fare that is being charged by the airline and can add a huge amount to the ‘average’ family holiday cost.

The travel industry contributes a large amount to the U K economy, is a major employer and produces incremental government income by creating employment in other associated industries such as hotels, retail and hospitality, areas where the public spend their already highly taxed income! In our opinion it is vital that taxes are seen to be both viable and fair and not just an easy revenue stream.

← Back to all Travel News