Budget 2014: “Complete victory for Caribbean”
The Caribbean was the most affected region by APD with its positioning in the highest costing band.
From April 2015 flights from the UK to the region will be the same as other long-haul destinations such as the USA and Asia Pacific.
Caribbean Tourism Organisation’s chairman Beverly Nicholson-Doty said: “This is a complete victory for the Caribbean, which, led by the CTO, has been lobbying against the unfair system which charged a higher rate of APD on flights to Barbados than Hawaii and placed the United States at a competitive advantage.
“We are delighted that the Chancellor has finally accepted the Caribbean’s proposal made in November 2010 to return to the simpler and fairer two band system.
“Rest assured that the CTO, with support of our partners, will continue to advocate on behalf of the Caribbean tourism sector. We will now proceed to examine all the implications of this very positive development and advise our members accordingly.”
Travel companies have predicted they will now see an increase in holiday enquiries to the Caribbean as the flight prices will drop.
Al Francis, CEO of loveholidays.com said: “We expect to see a spike in enquiries for holidays to Caribbean favourites such as the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and St Lucia as travellers realise that APD charges for these islands will fall.”
Hugo Burge, CEO of momondo group also expects the announcement to drive more traffic to the Caribbean when the lower taxes are introduced next year.