Long-haul holidaymakers are not phased by further rises in air passenger duty (APD), even though they add hundreds of pounds to flights.

That is according to luxury holiday company Hayes & Jarvis, which claims it is not seeing any direct impact from the hike at all.

The tax, due to rise on April 1, can add hundreds to the cost of a family of four heading for Florida, and similar for a group bound for Australia.

But despite this long-haul bookings have soared, says Hayes & Jarvis, with those for the Caribbean – said to be hardest hit by the tax – surging by 24% after April.

“There seems little evidence that APD is a concern to holidaymakers,” said Niel Alobaidi, commercial director at Hayes & Jarvis.

“While there has been negative reporting about possible implications of this latest rise in APD, we do not believe we are seeing any direct impact from this at all.”

Considering the reasons for this, Mr Alobaidi said: “From bookings so far in 2012, we think the overall value of the holiday is a key driver of demand. Customers won’t bother to break down the cost of individual parts of each package.”

But Thomson Holidays owner TUI Travel maintains the increases are “an unnecessary blow for the aviation industry as a whole and an indication of how little regard the Government has for the whole area of tourism.”

Copyright © Press Association 2012

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