Travel is one of the greatest pleasures of life. Discovering new places, meeting new people, tasting new flavours… All are amazing reasons why so many people travel as much as they can afford to!
But flying is a real pain! You pay a fortune to wait hours before getting packed into a little tin can like sardines and breathing stuffy air for hours on end. And don’t even get me started on how much more horrible it can get! Crying babies, airsick passengers, turbulence, overheating, delays, airport security and a million other things can easily make the flight the worst part of your trip.
Now, Canadians can add another item to their list of travel woes… Canada has been ranked 8th most expensive in a worldwide survey of the cost of flying. Out of 138 countries, Canada is one of the most expensive to fly in. The main reason is taxes and airport charges.
The World Economic Forum’s Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report 2015 (p. 434) lays out each of these 138 countries in order of ticket taxes and airport charges. Canada scored a dismal 44.7 value score (out of a possible 100). The only countries that did worse were Ghana (43.5), Mali (42.0), Guinea (41.4), Peru (38.7), the Dominican Republic (31.1), Senegal (25.9) and the United Kingdom (17.0). In comparison, our Southern neighbours, the United States, fared better with a score of 51.1.
Are our airports overtaxed? Apparently, the problem comes from the fact that all international airports in Canada are in fact considered “Crown Land” and are therefore under the jurisdiction of Canada’s federal government. This means they can impose pretty much any tax they like on travel. Nice…