Germany’s tourist tax leads to 30% cut in Ryanair flights at Frankfurt Hahn

Ryanair has announced 30% flight cuts and the estimated loss of 1 million passengers at its Frankfurt Hahn base from summer 2011, citing the introduction of the German government’s €8 tourist tax as the reason behind the decision.

Ryanair’s summer 2011 schedule will be cut from 11 to 8 based aircraft with the number of flights reduced from over 500 to fewer than 400 each week.

Ryanair will also close nine routes from Frankfurt Hahn to Agadir, Berlin (from 10 January), Gdansk, Gothenburg, Klagenfurt, Prague, Santiago, Seville and Wroclaw while 15 other routes will have reduced frequencies.

Ryanair says that the German Government’s €8 tourist tax makes Germany an uncompetitive tourist destination at a time when many other EU governments (including Holland, Belgium, Greece and Spain) have scrapped tourist taxes altogether and/or reduced airport charges, in some cases to zero, in order to grow traffic and tourism.

Ryanair’s Michael Cawley remarked, “The German Govt’s €8 tourist tax will do significant damage to traffic and tourism in Germany next year. International experience shows that tourist taxes have caused substantial traffic collapses in both Ireland and the UK this year and we believe that this ill advised €8 tourist tax will do similar damage to German tourism and jobs.”

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