Slashing APD Could Kickstart Strong Summer For Regional Airports
Regional & City Airports’ CEO Andrew Bell predicts a positive spring and summer for the UK’s regional airports.
As the government's announcement of the halving of domestic Air Passenger Duty (APD) from April 2023 is welcomed by airport operators across the UK, at Regional & City Airports (RCA) we’re particularly pleased - having campaigned for the tax’s scrapping for several years - to acknowledge a move we are certain will have a positive impact on the UK's regional airports.
The changes to APD, combined with the seasonal increase in holiday flights this spring, means that the regional airport industry is likely to be in for a much needed and very positive year, with a strong recovery in passenger numbers after the pandemic expected to continue into the summer.
This is especially encouraging for regional airports that have been hit hard by the pandemic, particularly those that rely heavily on domestic travel. RCA owns and operates Bournemouth Airport, Exeter Airport and Norwich Airport, providing essential air connectivity between regions and nations of the UK, including a brand new route from Bournemouth to Edinburgh with Ryanair from June.
RCA is confident that the change to APD to halve the domestic charge from £13 to £6.50 will result in a major boost to regional airports, creating jobs and driving economic growth. This will be especially beneficial to the smaller airports in the network, as the change to APD will support an increase in choice of airports, destinations and frequency of flights, and will reduce the cost of air travel opening it up to a wider range of people.
All in all, it looks set to be a very positive year for regional airports underpinned by the government's changes to APD and the strong recovery of air travel after the pandemic.