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Huge air tax increases over 20 years

31 Oct 2014

Since its introduction on 1 November 1994, Air Passenger Duty (APD) has increased 870%, according to recent figures.

Willie Walsh, Chief Executive of IAG, the parent company of British Airways, said: '20 years on, APD has snowballed out of control and become a tax that works against people wanting to visit relatives and friends, go on holiday or grow their business to create jobs.

'APD is way out of line with both other indirect taxes in the UK and flight taxes in other countries. Globalisation has accelerated enormously in the last 20 years. This tax helps no one in today' economic environment'.

The original air tax was introduced at £5 for flights with the UK and EU, and £10 for other destinations. In 2009 four geographical bands were established based on the destination country's distance from London – increasing for every 2000 miles travelled.

APD increased in line with inflation in 2014, however it was announced that the two higher rate bands will be abolished in 2015. This means there will be two APD rates – one for flights less than 2000 miles, and a higher rate for all further distances.