Airbus 319 in easyJet colours

Budget airline easyJet has again warned that coalition Government's plan to raise Air Passenger Duty (APD) and incentivise long haul travel will damage the environment and cost up to 77,000 jobs.

EasyJet said that the Government's consultation on air travel taxes would leave "European passengers facing more tax than ever before", while long haul business class travellers will pay up to £56 less in tax.

A report conducted by Frontier Economics and published by easyJet earlier this year, suggested that the Government's plans would cut passenger numbers in Britain by three million a year but increase CO2 emissions by 360,000 tonnes a year thanks to the rise in long haul business travellers.

In addition the plans could cut tourist spending in Britain by £475 million a year, reduce British GDP by £2.6 billion a year and cost as many as 77,000 jobs.

Under the proposals, put forward by the Government in March, APD will rise from £12 to as much as £16 for flights of less than 2,000 miles, while flights over 6,000 miles will have AP cut from £186 to £130.

Carolyn McCall, Chief Executive of easyJet, said, "Family holidays in Europe are being clobbered by the Government. This is unfair on hard working families. Why should long haul business class passengers be expected to pay so much less, while families who just want to enjoy a well earned break pay so much more?"

"Britain is one of the only European countries to tax air passengers. Raising this tax contradicts the Government's pledges to fairness and to the environment. It will hurt our economy and harm British jobs."