President Porfirio Lobo Sosa announced yesterday that the government will discontinue the increase in cost beginning in January. The measure had been adopted by Congress at midnight on December 14th, to the dismay of the population.
Hondurans currently pay an international departure tax of 34.80 dollars, and foreigners pay 37.80 dollars. The increase voted upon by Congress would have almost doubled those fees. The additional money was to be used to build a public airport at Palmerola in Comayagua to replace the Toncontín airport in Tegucigalpa.
The President added that the new airport terminal is still a priority, “not a day passes that we are not preoccupied about this airport in Tegucigalpa – Toncontiacute;n. Even football teams who come to play Honduras, typically want the game not to be in the capital, because of the problem of the airport, but in San Pedro Sula“. The government is looking at alternatives to fund the 300 million dollars needed for its development.
Entrepreneurs in the tourism industry and travelers alike protested the increase in the exit fee. If the fee were to remain in place, it would put Honduras as the country with the most expensive departure tax in Central America, and among the highest in the world.