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France eco-tax: How hard will it hit consumers?

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By Euronews
France eco-tax: How hard will it hit consumers?

France is set to introduce a new tax on almost all flights departing from its airports, which is expected to raise around €180 million in its first year — but how much will it actually affect consumers?

Not very much, according to Simon Calder, a senior travel editor at The Independent.

Environmentalists, he told Euronews, can't imagine anyone choosing not to fly because of a tax on economy tickets that amounts to "barely the price of a cup of coffee."

Calder then broke down the costs for individuals flying in various classes and compared it to the tax introduced by the UK.

He said: "Here in London, if I want to board an [economy] flight, it's going to cost me about €15 [in tax]."

"The charge is going to be one-tenth of that for a flight within Europe in economy class."

Calder adds that this difference in scale also applies to long haul flights.

He said: "If you're going long-haul from France, it's going to be about €3. The compares, again, with the UK charge in economy of about €90."

Moving up to business class — where the impact on the environment is "much more significant" — "that's going to be €9 if you are flying within Europe from France, and €18 if that is a long-haul flight."

This can be compared to the €200 charge on long-haul business class trips from the UK.

France expects to raise €180 million in its first year after introducing the new tax, but this pales in comparison to the UK's €3.5 billion.

Calder says that environmentalists would argue that a tax would need to be much higher in order to make a significant mark on the battle against climate change, perhaps on a Europe-wide or worldwide scale.

READ MORE: France 'will introduce eco-tax' on flights out of France