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APD Axed for Under 12s

On Friday, 1 May 2015, the controversial Air Passenger Duty tax (APD) was axed for children under the age of 12.

Great news for families wishing to fly overseas, and just the begin of the end of APD for children – APD for under 16s will be scrapped from 1 May 2016.

To be eligible for an APD-free flight, a child must be under 12 on the date they fly out of the UK, not their age when they return from an overseas airport (great if they're celebrating their birthday abroad), and travelling in economy class.

The Government has also scrapped the two upper APD bands - there will now be one long-haul APD fee of £71 in economy and £142 in other classes.

APD Refunds
A large number of travellers who have already booked their summer holiday, will have paid APD for their children – it will have been included in the price at the time of booking.

Although some airlines have not yet stated how they intend to issue refunds, the vast majority say that this refund will happen automatically. EasyJet has said that an automatic refund should be made when passengers go to enter passenger details.

If you are about to pay the balance of your holiday, you should contact your tour operator to check that the refund has, or will be issued.

No Expiry Date on APD Refunds 
The Government has said that there is no expiry date on when passengers can claim their refund, although the claim period is not likely to be indefinite, so it is best to apply for any refund sooner rather than later.

Refund Amounts
The amount a passenger will be refunded will vary depending on when the air travel was booked. This is because changes to the costs per miles flown was implemented last year:

  • For flights booked after 19 March 2014, you can expect to be refunded £13 for flights of 2,000 miles or less. For longer flights, £71 will be refunded.
  • For flights booked before 19th March 2014, you can expect a  £13 refund for flights of 2,000 miles or less; £69 for those travelling between 2001 miles and 4,000 miles; £85 if the flight length is between 4,001 miles and 6,000 miles; and £97 if the flight is more than 6,000 miles.