Three out of four UK holidaymakers say Air Passenger Duty (APD) is too high following the increase in rates on April 1, and two thirds believe APD is unfair on families.
Exclusive research for Travel Weekly, conducted at the weekend, suggests 17% of holidaymakers may choose to holiday in Europe rather than fly further afield as a result of higher APD. The tax is considerably lower on economy air travel within Europe, at £13 per passenger compared with a minimum £65 beyond.
More than half of holidaymakers said they would favour destinations with lower rates of air tax. However, only 6% said APD would stop them flying.
The survey of 500 adults who have flown on holiday found 75% agreed APD “is too high”, of whom half (or 38%) agreed “strongly”.
The study, by Explore Research, found just 14% of holidaymakers consider “overall APD is fair” against 64% who think it unfair, a ratio of 4.5 to one – with 29% saying they “strongly disagree”.
The rate agreeing they were more likely to pick a destination “if it had a lower rate of tax” was highest among young holidaymakers at 67% of 18-34 year-olds, against 55% of 35-54 year-olds and 45% of those aged 55 and above.
Perhaps surprisingly, 45% disagreed that the overall price of a flight matters most, with 28% saying it is the final fare that counts.
Just 14% thought APD “fair”. However, one in four (26%) agreed people who can afford to fly should pay a tax on flights; 44% disagreed with this.
Two out of three (68%) agreed APD is unfair on families, 33% agreeing strongly.
Two out of five (43%) said the increased rates of APD made them less likely to book premium economy seats on long flights. APD on premium economy fares is double the rate in economy – meaning £130 to the US rather than £65, and £184 to Australia instead of £92.
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