Airport launches ‘Give us a break’ tax campaign for passengers

13th June 2011

Passengers at Manchester Airport are being asked to let the Chancellor of the Exchequer know their feelings on the UK’s air taxes by signing up to the ‘Give us a break’ campaign which launched today and aims to encourage the Government to keep air taxes lower from regional airports.

The ‘Give us a break’ campaign aims to raise awareness among passengers of the cost of air passenger duty (APD) and the effect it is having on the price of their ticket.
Specially designed post-boxes have been installed in Terminals 1 and 2 for passengers to send a pre-written postcard to the Rt Hon George Osborne MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer, encouraging him to consider a lower level of air taxes for airports like Manchester.

In the March Budget, the Treasury invited comments and relevant evidence on the impact of air passenger duty (APD) on the UK’s regional economies and time is almost up for the public to submit their views with the consultation ending on the 17th June.

By getting involved in the campaign passengers will be showing their support for more destinations direct from Manchester, more jobs for the North West and more affordable holidays. The current high price of oil and the system of air taxes in the UK is putting pressure on the price of flights and seeing many airports lose key routes, while the economy has been in recession.

Jonathan Bailey, External Affairs Director for the Manchester Airports Group (MAG), said: “This is the last chance for passengers to have their say on the proposed changes that could seriously affect their future holidays and business trips. Many UK travellers are unaware that they pay the highest levels of flight tax in Europe but they have an opportunity to have their say and make their voice heard to Government. We are asking our passengers to show their support and help convince the Government that a regionalised tax system could work in the long term and provide a stronger aviation industry for the UK.”

Passengers at regional airports tend to be more price sensitive than at the London airports, which can make regional airports less attractive to airlines. The Manchester Airports Group (MAG) has had a concern that additional price rises might discourage airlines from developing new routes from regional airports that businesses in the North require.

Earlier this year, MAG announced its support for ABTA’s 'A Fair Tax on Flying' campaign and joined an alliance of more than 25 airlines, airports, tour operators, destinations and trade associations who were uniting to call on the Government to make the system of aviation tax in the UK fairer. That helped to raise awareness of the current system amongst UK travellers and saw the issue of a regionalised system of tax being mentioned in the Treasury’s subsequent consultation on the current system.

The final deadline for responses to be submitted is Friday 17th June. Passengers who might not be travelling through the terminals before then can send their comments direct to the Treasury by email to apd@hmtreasury.gsi.gov.uk

ENDS

For more information and photographs please contact Manchester Airport Press Office on 0161 489 2700 or email press.office@manairport.co.uk

Published on: 13/06/2011 10:54:29