GST on Transport


GST on Transport


There are various GST rates, ranging from 0% to 18%, for the transportation of goods and passengers by air, rail, and road. The GST on passenger transportation services has not significantly changed the cost of airline or rail tickets. Possibly even more crucially, if transport GST has been paid, input tax credit (ITC) may not always be applicable. In the following sections, we will discuss various aspects of the applicability of GST on transportation of goods or passengers.

GST on Transport of Passengers by Air  

GST on air travel tickets for passengers is applicable as follows:

  • 5% GST on economy class air tickets
  • 5% GST on tickets of chartered flights for the purpose of pilgrimage
  • 12% GST on business class air tickets
  • 18% GST on rental services of aircraft (with or without operator)/chartered flights

If you are travelling for business, you can claim the GST on air tickets as input tax credit (ITC) for your business. Airlines too can claim ITC on input services in case of economy class passengers. In case of business class, airlines ITC can be claimed for food items, spare parts as well as other inputs except fuel.

GST on Transport of Passengers by Rail

GST on rail tickets (passenger transport) is applicable at the following rates:

  • 5% GST on AC and First Class train tickets
  • Nil GST on sleeper and general class tickets
  • Nil GST on metro tickets/tokens

GST on Road Transport of Passengers

Depending on the mode of transportation used, different GST rates apply to passenger road transport services. The primary GST rates that apply to the GST on passenger transportation by road are as follows:

  • Nil GST on passengers travelling by road on public transport
  • Nil GST on transport by road of passengers by metered taxi/auto rickshaw/e-rickshaw
  • Nil GST on transport by non-A/C contract carriage/stagecoach
  • 5% GST on transport by A/C contract carriage/stagecoach (no Input Tax Credit)
  • 5% GST on transport by radio taxi and similar services
  • 18% GST on rental services of road vehicles including cars, buses, coaches (with or without operator)

GST on Transportation of Goods

Goods transported by air, rail, road, or inland waterways are subject to transport-related GST, starting from nil. GST. The following are some of the key goods that are exempt from GST on transport:

  • Relief materials designated for victims of man-made/natural calamities, mishaps, accidents, etc.
  • Pulses, milk, salt, flour, rice and other food grains
  • Agricultural produce/products and organic manure
  • Military/defense equipment being transported
  • Newspapers/magazines registered with Registrar of Newspapers
  • If the gross amount charged for goods transport is less than Rs. 1,500
  • Transport of personal use or household goods
  • Transport of goods of unregistered persons

Apart from the above cases, GST on transport of goods by a GTA (goods transport agency) features the following taxation rates:

  • 5% GST on transport in case ITC (input tax credit) is not availed
  • 12% GST is applicable in case ITC is availed

Alternately, the following GST rate may also be applicable:

  • 18% GST is applicable to rental services of road vehicles including trucks (with or without operator)
  • 18% GST is applicable to rental services of freight aircraft (with/without operator)
  • 18% GST applicable on rental services of water vessels including freight vessels (with/without operator)


Krishnakant Jakhotia

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