Air Passenger Duty on flights for children up to 15 years old has been scrapped. If you have already paid for flights you may need to claim this money back: here is how.
It is a tax charged by airlines on all economy flights that leave the UK.
You only pay Air Passenger Duty (APD) for flights leaving the United Kingdom, and not for inbound flights.
You are charged £26 per person on short haul economy flights to most of Europe, and £150 per person on long haul flights.
You pay APD as part of your ticket price, and airlines pass the tax onto the government.
All economy flights departing the UK from 1st March 2016 that were booked for passengers aged between 12 and 15.
This change was announced in the 2014 Autumn Statement and is the second phase of reductions made on APD.
Depending on which airline you are travelling with, and when you booked, you may need to claim a refund of Air Passenger Duty you paid on flights for anyone aged between 12 and 15.
APD was abolished for passengers under 12 on 1st May 2015, which resulted in many airlines immediately updating their ticket prices and issuing automatic refunds to anyone that had already booked flights for anyone affected.
However, it took other airlines longer to revise their pricing and get the necessary procedures in place to issue refunds.
Yes, but only for flights booked for passengers aged between 12 and 15 which had included the cost of APD.
If the ticket price you paid is less than the cost of APD then you may not be entitled to any money back.
If you are unsure or worried if this affects you, do not hesitate to contact your airline's customer service team.
They will confirm whether they'll be issuing automatic refunds or if you need to fill in a form to reclaim the money.
If you booked via a travel agent, you will need to contact them to ask for a refund.
Flights are categorised into different Air Passenger Duty bands, based on the distance of the destination from the UK.
Air Passenger Duty bands from 1st April 2016 to 31st March 2017 are:
|A||Up to 2000||£26|
Air Passenger Duty is not payable on some long haul flights departing from Northern Ireland, and rates will likely be changing for some flights departing from Scotland in the near future.
Some airlines will automatically refund the money back to your payment card, or email instructions to you explaining how you can get your APD back.
Here is how some of the most popular airlines flying from the UK are handling APD refunds:
|Airline||Refund process||Customer service number||Are they still charging APD?|
|American Airlines||Proactive refund by airline||0800 433 7300||Yes|
|British Airways||Complete online form if you booked before 30th September 2015, proactive refund by airline after this date||0344 493 0787||No|
|Cathay Pacific||Contact customer services||0208 834 8866||Yes|
|Delta Airlines||Proactive refund by airline||0871 221 1222||Yes|
|easyjet||Proactive refund by airline||0330 365 5000||No|
|First Choice||Proactive refund by airline||0203 451 2688||No|
|Jet2.com||Log into 'Manage My Booking' to request a refund if you booked before December 2014, proactive refund by airline after this date||0333 300 0042||No|
|KLM Royal Dutch Airlines||Complete online form||020 7660 0293||Yes|
|Norwegian Air||Send refund request via contact us page online||0330 828 0854||Yes|
|Ryanair||Complete online complaint form for refund||0330 100 7838||No|
|Scandinavian Airlines||Contact customer services||0207 660 8001||Yes|
|South African Airways||Contact customer services||0208 576 5555||Yes|
|Swiss International||Contact customer services||0345 601 0956||Yes|
|TUI||Proactive refund by airline||0203 451 2688||No|
|Virgin Atlantic||Contact customer services*||0344 209 7777||Yes|
* Signposted at booking stage.
You can still claim a refund for APD if you booked:
From a third party: Travel agents will be responsible for the refund rather than the airline. Be aware that acceptance of any refund from a third party agent will be dictated by their own specific terms and conditions of sale.
When your child was 15 years old, but turns 16 before or during the return flight: If the child flying is still 15 years old up until the final flight, then you are still eligible to apply for a refund.
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