Azara Blog: UK Treasury causes chaos at the airports

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Date published: 2007/01/13

The BBC says:

Passengers are being warned of possible chaos at airports next month as some airlines seek to charge extra air tax for tickets bought months ago.

From 1 February the Air Passenger Duty will go up by between £5 and £40.

Most airlines raised fares as soon as Chancellor Gordon Brown announced the hike on 6 December.

But some are demanding further payment for tickets booked before the rise. Ryanair said those who do not pay before flying will be turned away.

The chancellor's critics say two months was too short notice for the duty increase and it is unfair to charge customers who booked months earlier but will fly after 1 February.
But the Treasury says the aviation industry was not meeting its environmental responsibilities so a decision was taken to introduce the duty increase swiftly.

It says the extra £1bn in duty will go towards better public transport and the environment.

The Treasury is pathetic. No tax is earmarked in the way they have implied. And they should indeed have increased the air passenger duty only for new tickets, not for already purchased ones. Not to mention that they should be taxing air fuel, not air passengers, if they really want to pretend to be worried about the environment, rather than just using that as a pretext for yet another stealth tax.

You would almost think the Labour government was trying to destroy the UK airline industry, what with bogus terrorist alerts leading to ridiculous security requirements, and now this. Needless to say, the Tories and Lib Dems would be just as bad. (They have already stated that they want to destroy the UK airline industry.) The politicians don't care, it's not their money they are playing games with.

And the BBC is incorrect to state that "most airlines raised fares as soon as...". They did not raise their fares, they just raised the amount of tax collected. They are not the ones who are running the racketeering scheme, the government is.

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