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Cebu Pacific integrates travel tax in online tickets

MANILA, Philippines — Cebu Pacific passengers purchasing their ticket online can now pay the Philippine travel tax through Cebu Pacific Air’s website and mobile application.

On Tuesday, Cebu Pacific signed a memorandum of agreement(MOA) with the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority(TIEZA) for the integration of the Philippine travel tax in airline tickets bought online.

“Passengers who are exempt from the tax, or are eligible for reduced travel tax, on the other hand, can still book, pay and confirm their flights on Cebu Pacific, but they need to present their valid tax exemption documents upon check-in,” Cebu Pacific said.

“We thank TIEZA for working with us to come up with the guidelines that allowed the payment of travel through the Cebu Pacific booking channels. This would help ease the line on on-site payment of travel tax and provide hassle-free travel for passengers,” Cebu Pacific vice president for corporate affairs JR Mantaring said.

Under Presidential Decree 1183, individuals who are leaving the country irrespective of the place where the air ticket is issued and the form or place of payment are required to pay a travel travel tax of P1,620 for economy class passage and P2,700 for first class passage.

While TIEZA is in charge of collecting travel taxes, the agency only receives 50 percent of the collected travel fees.

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Republic Act 9593, or the Tourism Act of 2009, provides that half of the proceeds from travel tax collection is accrued to TIEZA, while 40 percent goes to the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), and the remaining 10 percent is given to the National Commission for Culture and Arts (NCCA).

Apart from the signing with Cebu Pacific, the TIEZA also forged a partnership with the Bureau of Immigration(BI) for the upgrade and enhancement of redesigned Arrival/Departure(A/D) Cards.

The TIEZA is the principle agency responsible for the timely collection of travel taxes, while the BI is in charge for the enforcement and administration of immigration, citizenship, and alien admission and registration laws in the Philippines.

“This partnership between TIEZA and BI would help both agencies fulfill their respective mandates. Through the use of the A/D Cards, TIEZA can ensure the payment of travel taxes and BI can oversee the movement of foreign nationals and Filipino citizens entering and exiting the country.

The TIEZA said the redesigned A/D Cards are in line with the government’s thrust to attract tourists and promote tourism, as it features projects of TIEZA and as well as other top tourist spots in the country.

Under the MOA, the TIEZA shall design and print the A/D Cards, while BI shall take care of the storage and dissemination of the A/D Cards and shall share TIEZA information pertaining to travel taxes obtained from the A/D cards.

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