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Industry "Will Welcome" Proposed Tax on Private Jet Flights Says PrivateFly.com


Ahead of tomorrow’s expected announcement on taxation for private jet travel, Europe’s leading online booking platform for private jet charter gives an industry view.

London, United Kingdom, March 24, 2011 --(PR.com)-- In tomorrow’s budget, George Osborne is widely expected to announce a consultation on whether to extend Air Passenger Duty (APD) to private jet travel or to introduce a new taxation system to private jet flights, which are not currently subject to duty. According to leading online booking network PrivateFly.com, the private jet industry and its passengers will embrace the proposed changes.

Commenting on this, Adam Twidell, CEO and founder of PrivateFly.com, said:

“I believe private jet passengers would accept the need to pay APD which would add a relatively small increase to their costs, based on the current ‘per passenger’ levy. Currently, the duty applies to airline flights in bands according to both the distance of the journey and the class of seat. Our average passenger payload is 2.8 per flight, so the impact on a return flight from London to Paris would be to increase the cost overall by 3.5 percent (£134.40 on a typical £3,900 return journey). Or by 2.5 percent on a longer journey, such as London to Cairo (when the increase would be £672 on a typical cost of £26,900)*.

“Coming out of recession, the sector is embracing the need for more transparency and new ways of operating. Introducing APD, or another fair system of taxation, for private jet flights is just one way in which it is moving into line with other forms of transport and integrating with the travel industry as a whole. This includes making private charter flights more widely available through travel agents and providing online aggregation and booking.

“Private jet charter is increasingly being seen as a viable and comparable form of time-efficient travel, with two thirds of European flights going where airlines don’t operate a direct service**; and also allows optimal scheduling flexibility. And of course, the industry is increasingly in demand when airline flights cannot meet demand, such as for recent evacuation flights out of Japan and the Middle East, or during the snowfall and ash cloud crises which affected Europe last year.

“VIP service, privacy and comfort are still very much part of private aviation’s appeal, but the stereotype of the ‘fat cat’ private jet user is largely a thing of the past. It will be interesting to see whether APD or another relevant taxation system follows from the consultation process. I do believe this will be welcomed by the vast majority of industry players.”

###

Notes to editors:

*Charter flight costs are market estimates using the PrivateFly.com online cost calculator. Prices are subject to availability.

**Source: EuroControl Air Traffic statistics

Current rates of APD:

Standard APD Rates applicable since 1 November 2010:
Band A (0-2000 miles) - £24
Band B (2001 - 4000 miles) - £120
Band C (4001 - 6000 miles) - £150
Band D (6000+ miles) - £170
(Standard rates apply when seat pitch exceeds 1.016 metres / 40 inches)

Reduced APD Rates applicable since 1 November 2010:
Band A (0-2000 miles) - £12
Band B (2001 - 4000 miles) - £60
Band C (4001 - 6000 miles) - £75
Band D (6000+ miles) - £85
(Reduced rates apply when seat pitch is less than 1.016 metres / 40 inches)

About PrivateFly.com:

PrivateFly is an online booking network that makes it quicker, easier and more cost effective to arrange private jet charter.

With over 2700 operators registered worldwide, PrivateFly is the only online aggregator for private jet charter in Europe.

PrivateFly combines online efficiency and transparency with offline expertise to offer a full-service VIP charter service to direct customers and partners. The bespoke software has been created in-house specifically to meet the needs of charter customers and operators. In 2010 PrivateFly launched the world’s first iPhone application to provide instant private jet pricing on a mobile phone.

PrivateFly.com was recently awarded Website of The Year in Flight International’s "Webbies" awards which recognise online excellence across the whole of the aviation industry - the judges describing it as "the iTunes" of aviation. It was also announced as one of the Smarta 100 companies 2010, by a judging panel including Dragon’s Den’s Deborah Meaden and other leading entrepreneurs, such as Bebo founder Michael Birch.

Founded in 2007, PrivateFly is based in St Albans, Hertfordshire and in 2010 secured first round investment funding to expand the business within the UK and selected international markets.

For further information, interviews or imagery, please contact:

Katrina Suppiah
Publicite Ltd
T: 020 8543 6582
E: k.suppiah@publicite.co.uk
Contact Information
PrivateFly.com
Viv Diprose
+44(0)1747642777
Contact
www.privatefly.com

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