Residents Will Burden A Higher Percentage Rate Increase At 117%
Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
May 30, 2011 (SKNIS)
The increase in Departure Tax at the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport will ensure the modern facility remains compliant with global security requirements while meeting the demands of an ever changing travel market.
During an appearance on SKNIS’ radio magazine Perspectives, Minister responsible for Tourism and International Transport, Honourable Richard Skerritt noted that while an increase to US $37.00 or EC $100.00 is expected on July 1, 2011, it will ensure passengers remain safe in a post 9/11 world.
“Taxes that are charged at airports relate to the cost of doing business at the airport,” he stressed. “The security costs at airports have become quite horrendous [given] the technology involved and the security requirements to meet international standards and the modern communication and other management requirements.”
Minister Skerritt stressed that while the RLB International Airport has undergone several upgrades, the departure tax has remained the same for the last eight years.
“If everybody does not pay certain fees, then you cannot finance the airport and keep up-to-date with the capital infrastructure requirements and the modernization required to take new types of jets and others,” he explained.
Several Caribbean countries have also recently increased departure fees and others are reportedly considering similar actions.
“St. Lucia has just carried up theirs by US $35.00 and Jamaica carried up theirs by [approximately] US $10.00 so I can very easily justify the increase,” the Minister responsible for International Transport revealed.
The departure fees will be billed into the ticket making it less of a hassle for travelers. Rates for adults currently stand at US $22.00 for visitors while residents pay US $19.00.