Update 7 May 2015: For an updated table showing airline-by-airline refund processes, see the Reclaim Air Passenger Duty for under 12s MSE News story.
The price of flights departing from 1 May next year will fall for under 12s, as the Government is scrapping Air Passenger Duty (APD) for this group. So MoneySavingExpert.com explains airline-by-airline how those who've already paid can reclaim the tax.
The Government confirmed that next year's APD change would apply to both new and existing economy class bookings (see the APD to be scrapped for children under 12 MSE News story.) This means:
- If you've already booked a ticket, airlines are expected to refund the charge. However not all airlines have worked out how they'll do this. See below for an airline-by-airline guide.
- If you've yet to book a ticket, it depends on the airline's systems whether the ticket simply won't contain the tax or whether it will and you then need to apply for a refund. Again see the table below for an airline-by-airline guide.
However be aware that if you've booked a holiday via a travel agent, you should contact them to arrange a refund as airlines will generally process only direct bookings – both Virgin and Thomas Cook have said they cannot process refunds for third party book
U12s' tax scrapped from May – airline-by-airline (We'll update table as we get more answers)
|Airline||Flight date APD won't be charged from||How are refunds being given?||Has booking system been changed so APD not charged?|
|Aer Lingus||1 May 2015||Yet to decide||Yes|
|Air Canada||Awaiting response||Awaiting response||Awaiting response|
|Air France||1 May 2015||Yet to decide||Yes|
|American Airlines||1 May 2015||Awaiting response||Awaiting response|
|BMI Regional||1 May 2015||Customers need to call 0330 333 7998||Not yet|
|British Airways||1 May 2015||Automatically refunded to card if booked via BA.com. If via travel agent & agent name appears on your statement, apply via the travel agent||Yes|
|Delta||Awaiting response||Awaiting response||Awaiting response|
|Easyjet||1 May 2015||45,000 customers with affected bookings contacted and told how to claim a refund. More instructions on Easyjet's website||Not yet|
|Emirates||1 May 2015||Yet to decide||Yes|
|Flybe||1 May 2015||Refunds automatic for bookings made after 3 December. For earlier bookings, claim forms available on Flybe's website||Not yet|
|Jet2||1 May 2015||Yet to decide||Not yet|
|KLM||1 May 2015||Yet to decide||Yes|
|Lufthansa||Awaiting response||Awaiting response||Awaiting response|
|Monarch||1 May 2015||Emails will be sent to customers giving details of how to apply for the refund - it will go back on the card used to pay. If paid via travel agent, customers need to apply via travel agent||Not yet|
|Norwegian||Awaiting response||Awaiting response||Awaiting response|
|Ryanair||27 March 2015||Refunds automatic on to card you booked with, at check-in||Not yet|
|SAS (Scandinavian Airlines)||1 May 2015||Customers need to call 0871 226 7760 or visit the SAS website||Yes|
|Swiss||Awaiting response||Awaiting response||Awaiting response|
|Thomas Cook||1 May 2015||Affected customers will be contacted and explained the refund process||From 16 December|
|Thomson||1 May 2015||Refunds automatic on to card you booked with or via cheque||Not yet|
|United Airlines||Awaiting response||Awaiting response||Awaiting response|
|Virgin Atlantic||1 May 2015||Automatically refunded whether booked via Virgin Atlantic or travel agent||Yes|
|Wizz Air||1 May 2015||Yet to decide||Not yet|
APD – what you need to know
Here are the key points you need to know about APD:
- APD is charged on all outbound flights from the UK and is based on the distance flown. It's not charged on incoming flights to the UK.
- The Government's APD cut only applies to economy class tickets.
- Age is counted on the date of travel, so someone 11 now, but 12 at point of travelling would NOT get the exemption next year.
- The APD cut will be extended to under-16s from 1 March 2016.
- The APD on economy flights currently costs between £13-£97 depending on the distance of the flight. This will change to between £13 and £71, depending on the distance of the flight, from April 2015.
- Children below the age of two who are not allocated a separate seat before boarding are not charged APD.
Additional reporting by Paloma Kubiak.