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Flying High In Florida Sales Tax Exempt

  • Jun 8, 2012 | Susan McLain

In a recently issued tax information bulletin, Florida clarified the taxability of admissions for sightseeing rides involving “air commerce.”

Admission for sightseeing “…rides that use boats, buses, trolleys, trains, and other vehicles,” are generally taxable in the state of Florida. “However, federal law prohibits the state from taxing individuals traveling in air commerce. The term ‘air commerce’ relates to activities operated within a federal airway or directly affecting safety in interstate or foreign air commerce.”

Rides and activities that may be sales tax exempt include helicopter, airplane, hot air balloons and skydiving. As long as the activity will be flying in a federal airway, it is sales tax exempt. However, one example where tax may be charged: “…hot air balloon rides where the balloon is tethered or moored to the ground [do] not operate in a federal airway. Sales tax must be collected on the sales price charged for the rides because the operations are not within a federal airway.”

Only the admission to the flight is sales tax exempt, but other activities that go along with the flight may be taxable. For example, videotaping a skydiving experience: the price of the videotape is taxable. In these cases, “[t]he company should separately state the admission charge and videotape charge and collect sales tax on the…sales price of the videotape.”

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Sales tax rates, rules, and regulations change frequently. Although we hope you'll find this information helpful, this blog is for informational purposes only and does not provide legal or tax advice.
Avalara Author
Susan McLain
Avalara Author Susan McLain
Susan McLain began her career as a technical writer in technology industries such as satellite networking and medical devices. Her skills encompass technical and marketing writing, usability engineering, verification and validation testing and protocol writing, requirements development, business analysis, technical illustration/graphic design and marketing. She has owned her own business providing service to small to medium sized business and in other positions, she has been in project management, documentation and marketing. She is currently the content specialist for Avalara helping to “make sales tax less taxing.”