The region's four big airlines have today joined forces in an unprecedented move to try to stop more rises in air taxes in this weeks budget.
They say if Air Passenger Duty was scraped more people would travel with up to 60,000 jobs created - many in the south.
Executives from the airlines have sent an urgent letter to Chancellor George Osbourne. The airlines are: British Airways, Easyjet, Ryanair and Crawley based Virgin Atlantic. They say while they compete for passengers, air tax is an issue they stand united in trying to stop.
Passengers can now pay as much as £92 tax on a long-haul flight. The cost is £12 in Europe. This weeks budget could see another rise.
Airlines say the UK now has the highest air tax in the world and in some European countries it has been scrapped to allow a boost for jobs and growth.
More top news
Detectives have charged two men with the murder of Jason Martin-Smith in Hastings in 2001.
Thursday night's weather for the east of the region
Thursday night's weather for the west of the region