Ryanair CEO: Hungarian departure tax is stupid and a theft

The CEO of Irish airline Ryanair strongly condemns the departure tax imposed by the Hungarian government on airlines.

Ryanair has condemned the Hungarian departure tax on airlines. In a recent, forceful statement, they called on Economic Development Minister Márton Nagy to explain why airlines losing money to coronavirus and Ukraine should be hit with an excess profit tax.


As can be read in the Portfolio article, according to the press release, the low-cost airline seeks answers to the following questions from Márton Nagy:

Airlines are overwhelmed by the new tax to protect Hungarian families, while the sector suffers record losses due to the coronavirus pandemic and the Russian-Ukrainian war.

  • Why should Hungarian families and travelers pay more expensive tickets when the Hungarian airline industry has been suffering for two years due to Covid and the war in Ukraine?
  • How does the airline tax help Hungarian families?

The strong statement

According to Ryanair’s press release,

“This special tax is not a departure tax, but a coup d’etat by a government completely disconnected from reality.

As European governments cut taxes on aviation to help traffic, tourism and the job market recover from the pandemic, Hungary is imposing taxes on loss-making airlines such as Wizz Air and Ryanair, undermining further the competitiveness of Hungarian aviation and tourism, according to Portfolio.

Consumer Protection Survey

As hvg.hu writes, Ryanair also mentions the consumer protection investigation which was ordered by the Hungarian government after it was discovered that the airline was passing on the surcharge imposed on passengers traveling from Budapest (HUF 3,900 [EUR 9.79] for European routes operated by Ryanair) to those who purchased tickets before the announcement of the tax.

They write that they “welcome the consumer protection investigation and call on the government office in Budapest to extend its investigation to how the Hungarian government can impose a departure tax on a loss-making industry.”

“Maybe Minister Nagy can explain why this idiotic tax is imposed on the loss-making airline industry,”

says the statement.

Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary even offered to send Martin Nagy a book called “Economics for Beginners” (referring to a series of books).

Read alsoRyanair CEO: Hungarian departure tax is stupid and a theft

Source: Portfolio.hu, hvg.hu

Laura T. Thrasher