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Taxes Raise Price of Air Travel to the UK

Taxes bad for travel to UK

The United Kingdom, or London more precisely, was once a great air travel gateway into Europe. I would purchase one budget airline ticket from the USA (or wherever in the world I happened to be) to London for around $200, and then buy another budget airline ticket from there into the heart of Europe.

But increased taxes have made air travel to the UK vastly more expensive, and a change in my strategy is needed.

On November first, the tax increase on flights entering and exiting from the UK have risen nearly fifty percent. The price you pay is in proportion to the distance you intend to travel and the class of ticket you choose. To fly from England to mainland Europe economy class, the tax levied by the British government is 12 pounds per passenger, but to get to Australia the charge is now 120 pounds — or $180.

This tax is big, as even $18 extra dollars slapped on to a $50 budget air ticket from England to mainland Europe is, proportionally, a lot to pay.

Travel experts are now suggesting that some passengers could avoid the bulk of the taxes by first flying to Europe in economy class before then catching a separate long-haul flight from Paris or Amsterdam in premium. –Avoiding air passenger duty

“This obsession with taxes on flying … will inflict considerable harm on airlines and their ability to do good for society,” spoke British airways boss, Willie Walsh, and I must agree.

Officials from British Airways maintain that the increased APD would badly affect the business as the holiday season is just round the corner. “These huge tax hikes are very bad news for holidaymakers and completely unjustified,” an official said. -UK hikes air passenger duty

Passengers are always going to go for the cheapest price, and, with the internet, this price is easy to find. When countries drastically raise the price to arrive, less tourists will come; when less tourists arrive, the country receives less money. This is a simple equation. Charging more money to fly to and from the UK will cause more people to avoid this path of air travel.

From doing searches of flights connecting Europe with the rest of the world, the UK is no longer a good transfer hub. It is time to change my strategy and find a new path for getting about the planet.

Taxes bad for travel to UK

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Filed under: Air Travel, Economics, England, Europe

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been traveling the world since 1999, through 80 countries. He is the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China, and contributes to Forbes, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3165 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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