Air Passenger Duty freeze could boost British tourism
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Air Passenger Duty freeze could boost British tourism

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Travel trade association UKinbound has welcomed the decision in this week's Budget to freeze Air Passenger Duty (APD) on short and long-haul economy flights.

According to the government, the move on air tax means that 99 per cent of passengers coming to the UK will not see a rise in APD, with the move balanced by a rise for premium fares on long-haul routes.

The Chancellor also announced a review on tourism VAT for Northern Ireland following Brexit.

For Northern Ireland – the only part of the UK sharing a land border with another state – tourism-related businesses pay a 20 per cent VAT tax, more than double that of the neighbouring Republic of Ireland, which only pays a nine per cent tax, putting the north at a significant disadvantage.

“It’s encouraging to hear APD feature on the government’s agenda and that this tax on trade will be frozen on all short-haul and long-haul economy flights,” said UKinbound CEO Deirdre Wells.

“We’re also pleased to hear that a review will be undertaken regarding the impact of APD and VAT on tourism in Northern Ireland. However, APD’s detrimental effect on businesses across England, Scotland and Wales should also be investigated.

"The government’s commitment to a Brexit-ready Britain will be undermined if the review does not cover all four corners of the UK.”

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Following this week’s budget announcement, UKinbound – the travel trade association which focusing solely on the interests of the UK's inbound tourism sector – has welcomed a decision to freeze Air Passenger Duty (APD) on short and long-haul economy flights.