Photoablative (incubation and etching) characteristics of rhodamine 6G doped polymer films have been studied at 248 nm using in situ interferometric monitoring of the etch rate. The dye changes the ablation characteristics of the films. This process saturates with laser intensities and dye concentration and is more pronounced for polystyrene than for polycarbonate. This effect is interpreted as the change of free volume experienced by the polymer matrix when the film is doped by monomer or dimer dye molecules. This outlines how physical properties influence the expulsion mechanism.