Air Passenger Tax

What is it?

In 2000 the Minister of Finance announced that an Air Passenger Tax (APT) was to be instituted on chargeable passengers on a chargeable aircraft departing from an airport in the Republic to a destination outside the Republic.  This is also applicable to charter companies.   For more information refer to Section 47(B) of the  Customs and Excise Act No. 91 of  1964.         

Who is it for? 

The tax is not applicable to domestic flights.  It is only applicable to chargeable passengers leaving on an international flight.  Operators (airline), registered Agents (those acting on behalf of an operator) or charter companies will be liable for the payment of the APT to SARS on a monthly basis after reconciliation of the passenger manifests.  Non carrying passenger Airlines (cargo) will be required to register for APT purposes but will not be liable for APT payments.  

How to register? 

All operators (airlines), duly appointed agents and charter companies have to register for this tax which can only be done at the Customs and Excise Branch Office at OR Tambo International Airport (ORTIA).
Every operator or charter company must complete an APT102 and if an operator is required to appoint an agent the APT101 must also be completed and the following documents must be attached: 
  • Copy of company registration documents (issued by the Registrar of Companies and Close Corporations);
  • Copy of Operating Certificate (issued by the South African Civil Aviation Authority);
  • Proof of banking details (letter from the bank confirming the details); and
  • Any other documents/information as may be required by the Commissioner. 
Once the above has been received, it will be captured on the APT system and an APT code will be allocated to the operator that applied for registration. 

When and how should it be paid? 

An Operator, duly appointed agent or charter company is liable to pay SARS, within 21 days after the end of the month during which the amount was collected.  Where the 21st day is not a “Business day” such payment must be made on or before the last “Business day” prior to the 21st  to avoid late payment which may incur interest and possible penalties.
If not already registered on SARS eFiling for other taxes it is required from the Operator,  duly appointed agent or charter company to register and use the SARS eFiling service when making payment.  Other payment methods such as internet banking  or payment at a branch of an approved  bank may only be used in exceptional circumstances.

The APT rates are:

  • Standard rate (International flights): R190
  • Lower rate (BLNS countries): R100
General queries regarding APT can be directed to [email protected] or to Fili James at ORTIA on 011-571 5011 or at [email protected].
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