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Scottish APD takes on shape

business jet parked at scottish airport

As powers over APD are being devolved to the Scottish Parliament, policy makers are looking to replace UK Air Passenger Duty (APD) with a new Scottish APD which is planned to be charged on departures from a Scottish airport starting from 1 April 2018.

The Scottish replacement tax will operate in parallel to UK APD limiting the latter's geographical scope to England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Revenue Scotland will be administering the new tax which design is still under discussion.

The Scottish Government promises a 50 percent reduction of the current UK APD tax burden and even the abolition of APD in its entirety when public finances allow. They hope this measure will boost Scotland’s international competitiveness for business and inbound tourism.

The design of the new tax will most likely resemble the one of UK APD with only a few changes. The most notable design changes proposed by the Scottish Government are:

  • Default quarterly (instead of monthly) tax return cycle
  • Declaration and payment of tax by the 30th days following the end of the quarterly accounting cycle
  • Keeping records for 5 (instead of 6) years


To obtain views and suggestions on the proposed changes and how the new tax should be structured and operate, the Scottish Government invites stakeholders to participate in a public consultation which is open until Friday, 3 June 2016.

This a good opportunity for business jet operators to make their voice heard and influence the design of the new Scottish APD. You can respond to the consultation and download the consultation papers from the gray box below.