Petition to cut punitive taxes on trans-Tasman travel

2 replies

matt_lighton

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 17 Apr 2022

Total posts 2

Hi everyone,

Australia is the most heavily taxed jurisdiction for short-haul international travel. I set up this petition after seeing the cost breakdown of flights across the Tasman. Airport charges and government taxes often amount to over 50%, and sometimes over 80% of the overall ticket price, which is frankly absurd.

The aviation industry has long been calling for reform in this area, but unfortunately we've continuously gone backwards, threatening the overall viability of trans-Tasman travel.

Now that restrictions have lifted it will be good to get the issue onto the agenda. If you want to show your support please follow the link and sign: https://chng.it/Jz8Tm9xW

Thanks,

Matt

patrickk

Qantas

Member since 19 Apr 2012

Total posts 668

Not sure how airport charges are equated to taxes. They are private businesses who are in big demand given slot competition so they charge what the market will bear. Your petition should be aimed at the airport shareholders. Perth airport is a classic example where it’s biggest customer declined to pay the bills and after several years of court cases it was all resolved in a draw for both sides.

matt_lighton

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 17 Apr 2022

Total posts 2

You definitely have a point - part of the issue is the difference in airport charges for international vs domestic. Sydney Airport charges airlines (excluding costs for additional security screening for international flights which is a seperate charge) $5.36 for domestic vs $44.67 for international in passenger service fees - this is charged in both directions. There had been some discussion a decade ago of re-classifying trans-Tasman flights as domestic, but fell by the wayside between opposition from airport management (plus shareholders) and bureaucrats who judged it to be too difficult.

While a reclassification to domestic travel with pre-screening (similar to the USA and Canada) would be preferable, what I am suggesting is that the government substantially drop the Passenger Movement Charge (a tax that does not contribute to security screening or customs) from $60 toward the vicinity of $5 in line with international best practice in Europe for short-haul international travel. A $55 difference may not appear to be a hefty sum, but can save families over $200 on flights.

But I definitely agree with your point, $95 worth of passenger service charges from airports for a return short-haul flight is hefty. Only way to realistically get around that would be to reclassify trans-Tasman as domestic but I really don't sense any appetite from the government nor the airports on that front. Definitely looking forward to some competition in a couple years time here in Sydney with Western Sydney Airport.

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