France is about to go where other European countries have gone before, by instituting a tax on airline tickets, and hopes to avoid the push-back other countries have had from visitors and tourism businesses alike.
The charge, which can range up to €18, is being presented as a means of raising revenue for eco-friendly transportation infrastructure, and will be imposed starting next year. Some of the countries that have tried 'eco-taxes' such as this have found it had a negative impact on tourism, and most have either dropped it or reduced it sharply.
The French tax, set to take effect next year and expected to raise about €180 million, will range from €1.50 for domestic and European economy seats to €9 for business class; the rate goes up to €18 for business-class tickets outside Europe. The tax will be collected on departures, but not arrivals, and exempts transfer passengers as well as flights between France and its overseas territories. Flights to Corsica are also exempt.