The Trump administration’s budget proposal, if passed by Congress, will hit travelers in an unexpected way: with tax increases that will cost air passengers on the whole about $2 billion more each year. The goal of the proposal is to increase spending on infrastructure issues.
On Monday, the Trump administration revealed its new budget proposal, which looks to substantially boost infrastructure spending. Part of that spending boost would come in the form of increased fees for air travel passengers, raising TSA fees per ticket from $5.60 to $6.60. On the whole, the airline industry expects it will cost travelers up to $2 billion more annually.
Airlines for America says the plan will harm both travelers and the airline industry itself.
“Increasing taxes in any form will add to the cost of flying for millions of Americans, curtail job growth and limit the options small and medium communities currently enjoy,” Nicholas E. Calio, the CEO and president of the trade group, said in a statement.
Airlines themselves disagree, though, touting the increase as necessary and long past due.
“Lifting the outdated federal cap on airport user fees would allow airports to utilize local dollars for investment immediately and to leverage those resources through bonds to further multiply their benefit into the future – 100% consistent with what the president has outlined today,” CEO of the American Association of Airport Executives Todd Hauptli told USA Today.
Another aspect of the budget proposal includes selling certain government assets, like Washington Dulles and National Airports, but there’s no word yet on how that will affect travelers.