Effects of including transfer passengers in the air passenger tax

Since 1 January 2023, the air passenger tax for passengers departing from the Netherlands is € 26.43. Currently, this tax only applies to Origin-Destination (OD) passengers and transfer passengers are excluded. CE Delft and Significance conducted a study for the Ministry of Finance (Financiën) of the effects of including transfer passengers in air passenger tax for two different fare levels:

  • low fare: per departing flight an amount of € 13.215, which is € 26.43 for a return flight;
  • high fare: per departing flight an amount of € 26.43, which is € 52.86 for a return flight.

In doing so, we considered the effects of the increase in air passenger tax on tax revenues, the Dutch aviation sector (in terms of the number of passengers and flights), the climate and the environment. In addition to the two tax rates, we distinguish between the 2025 and 2030 vision years and four scenarios. For the high rate, the following effects would occur in 2025. For the low rate, these effects are approximately half the size.

  • Taxes: Revenue for the state treasury would increase by € 209 million to € 269 million, which is 34 to 39% more than with the current air passenger tax.
  • Dutch aviation sector: Ticket prices for transfer passengers at Schiphol would rise by 6.1% on average. As a result, the number of transfer passengers would fall by about 8 million (28 to 34%). The effects are greatest in the segment with two intercontinental flights, at 38 – 43%, despite a relative ticket price increase of not even 4%. This is due to a large number of diversions via other routes. Because the effects on OD passengers are limited, the total number of passengers would change to between 9 and 13%. This translates into a decrease on the total number of flights at Schiphol of 2 – 7%. That could rise to a maximum of 60,000 flights a year.
  • Climate, environment and noise: Due to the reduction in the number of flights, air passenger tax for transfer passengers would have a positive impact on climate, air pollution and noise pollution.

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