No APD for under 12’s and under 16’s.

By | Category: Travel news

As was widely forecast, George Osborne in his Autumn statement today has said that air passenger duty for children under 12 will be abolished on economy flights from next May. But he surprised many MP’s and the industry by committing to abolish APD for all children under 16 from 2016.

easyJet has already announced that it will be refunding the APD for customers who have already booked tickets for children over 2 and under 12 on flights departing UK airports on or after 1 May 2015.

passengers will children will be better off

passengers will children will be better off

This abolition applies to economy fares only. You’ll still pay if you travel in business and first class. It will coincide with the dropping of two of the four bands of APD which again, should make flights cheaper unless airlines use the opportunity to strengthen their balance sheets ie keep the money for themselves claiming costs are increasing which conveniently match the amount by which APD has been cut! There has been no devolving of APD to either wales or Scotland so hopes by local politicians that they could cut the tax have been thwarted.

This isn’t the only announcement he made that is of interest to travellers. The government will press ahead with plans to introduce signs on motorways that display the price of fuel at service stations, to help promote competition and lower fuel prices. Trials will begin early next year on trialling a new fuel comparison sign at 5 service stations on the M5 between Bristol and Exeter, with a view to introducing the signs nations wide by the end of 2015. the road enhancements leaked earlier including the tunnel under Stonehenge should also improve passenger journeys.

He also said that he would force airlines to display fuel surcharges as a separate item on air tickets secure in the knowledge that this would help reduce airline tickets. He isn’t forcing airlines to reduce their surcharges merely forcing them to reveal it as a separate item so that we can see how much it is actually costing.

As I wrote a three weeks or so ago, airlines have been very reluctant to drop prices despite a 27.1% drop in fuel prices (as at November 28th) over the last year worldwide. Might this added pressure force them to do so?

 

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