The war between Ryanair and the Hungarian government over departure tax is getting serious!

Hungary continues its financial stabilization as the war between Ukraine and Russia continues. Although the country currently expects steady growth in the coming years, some forms of taxation are likely to remain. Moreover, additional taxes on the air transport sector have given way to new conflicts.

Radical statement by Magyar Nemzet

This week, an article by Magyar Nemzet said that 60% of Ryanair passengers were canceling their July tickets. They say strongly that the majority of travelers reject the idea that airlines should pass the excess profit tax on to their customers in ticket prices.

“Ticket buyers condemn the arrogant action of the Irish multinational on the additional tax. This tax by the government is introduced in several sectors to balance the effects of war on families in order to replenish defense funds,” says Magyar Nemzet

They add: “The attitude of traders dominating the market, who pay similar taxes in many European countries, is not unique. Their practices are questionable not only in terms of pricing but also regarding their ground handling partners.

RyanAir Response

In response to the above statements, Ryanair’s press service told the following.

“Magyar Nemzet’s claims are false and fictitious,” the airline said.

In its response to the source above, Ryanair said less than 3% of passengers traveling after July 1 took the opportunity to cancel their tickets with a refund of the original price. They also added that all canceled seats will be available for purchase by Hungarians.

“97% decided to pay Márton Nagy’s silly excess profits tax on loss-making airlines,” the company continues. “Minister Nagy must now apologize to Hungarian families who have to pay higher rates because of the silly extra tax.”

Such language towards Márton Nagy is nothing new from Ryanair. On several occasions they called the Hungarian economist defamatory names.

Remaining Hungarian taxes

On the subject of taxation, let’s now look at which sectors will face additional taxes in the future. Portfolio has written a comprehensive article based on the recent financial statement of the Hungarian government.

Three increased special taxes could therefore remain after 2023: the tax on airlines, the increase in the tax on financial transactions and the tax on advertising.


Laura T. Thrasher