Why Are Taxes So High on International Flights?

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Why Are Taxes So High on International Flights?
(David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Taxes on international flights amount to more than domestic flight taxes because governments charge for additional services related to international travel. These services include customs inspections, extra security and tourist promotions, according to Susan Stellin of The New York Times.

Total Taxes

Although each individual tax may not amount to much, multiple fees can result in a considerable total charge. Some taxes, like supporting anti-AIDS campaigns, may have nothing to do with the trip or the airline at all, according to Stellin.

Poor Economy

Governments suffering from the poor economy need additional sources of revenue. As a result, they have begun charging international air travellers more in taxes to acquire more funds.


Not only do travellers oppose these higher taxes, the airline industry does too. According to Stellin's article "Taxes and Fees Grow for Air Travelers," the Air Transport Association has taken an official stance against higher air travel taxes, stating that organisations outside the industry should not use air passengers to acquire funds while airlines are losing money.

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