Features

Smart traveller: A guide to tourist tax

12 Dec 2022 by Hannah Brandler
Map of Europe and currencies (iStock.com/grandriver)

While tourism is certainly lucrative, it can also have a detrimental impact on both the environment and the lives of locals. Various countries have introduced a “tourist tax” to manage crowds, and improve infrastructure and public services.

As the world recovers from the pandemic, there are further calls for the introduction of a levy on overnight visitors to aid the recovery of the hospitality industry.

Here is a list of countries that have implemented a levy on visitors. Fees are collected through hotel room rates and airline fares. Airbnb has signed agreements with governments in select locations to collect and remit local taxes on behalf of hosts – the taxes will be displayed automatically when you pay for a booking.

EUROPE

Austria 

Salzburg and Vienna levy 3.02 per cent on accommodation costs per night. Children under 15 years old are exempt.

Belgium 

Varies by region – Brussels, Bruges, Ghent and Antwerp charge €2-€3 per person per night. Under-18s are exempt.

Croatia 

Over-18s are charged 8kn to 10kn (approx £1 to £1.20) per person per night during peak season.

Czech Republic 

Prague charges CZK50 (£1.71) per person per night.

France

The taxe de séjour is charged per person per night and ranges from €0.20 to €4.20 depending on accommodation. Under-18s are exempt. A stay in Paris incurs an additional tax of 25 per cent.

Germany 

The kulturforderabgabe (culture tax) or bettensteuer (bed tax) costs up to €5 per person per night depending on the location and accommodation. Berlin charges 5 per cent of the accommodation cost per night.

Greece 

Athens charges from €0.50 to €4 per room per night depending on the standard of accommodation.

Hungary 

In Budapest a 4 per cent nightly tax is added to the price of a room.

Italy 

Varies by city. Rome charges between €3 and €7 depending on your accommodation, and Florence up to €5 per person per night.

Venice has a tax of €1 to €5 depending on the season and type of accommodation. The city had also planned to charge day visitors €3 to €10 per day, depending on how busy the city is on the day, from January 2023 but the launch date has been postponed.

Travellers staying the night would be exempt from this entry fee as they already pay a tourist tax.

Lithuania

In Vilnius tourists are charged €1 per person per night.

Malta

Under the Eco Contribution Act, a fee of €0.50 per person per night is levied, capped at €5.

Montenegro

Varies by region, but typically costs €1 per person per day.

The Netherlands 

The toeristenbelasting (transient occupancy tax) is charged per person per night but varies across the 400 municipalities. Amsterdam charges €3 per person per night, in addition to the 7 per cent tax on the room price per night. Cruise passengers are also charged €8 per day.

Portugal 

Lisbon and Porto charge €2 per person (over 13 years old) per night up to a maximum of seven consecutive nights.

Romania

The taxa hoteliera locala (local hotel tax) is priced at 1 per cent on nightly accommodation fees.

Slovakia

The tourist tax, or city tax, is up to €1.70 per person per night.

Slovenia

Varies by region. Ljubljana charges approximately €3 per person per day.

Spain

The Catalonia region charges €0.60 to €3.50 per person per day; the Balearic Islands up to €4 per person per day; Valencia charges €0.50 to €2 per person per night, depending on the accommodation type, for a maximum of seven nights. 

Switzerland 

Varies by region, but typically costs SFr 2.50 (£1.98) per person per night.

FURTHER AFIELD

Barbados

Fees of US$2.50-10 (£2-£8) are added per room per night according to accommodation standard. A US$70 (£57) “airline travel and tourism development fee” also applies when leaving the island.

Bhutan

The country recently tripled its tourist tax to charges US$200 (£166) per person per day. The Sustainable Development Fee (SDF) replaces an existing $65 per day tax.

Indonesia

Tourists visiting Bali must pay a fee in the region of $9 (£7.30)

Japan

The sayonara (farewell) tax is ¥1,000 (£6) per person and is paid upon departure through the international air or cruise fare.

Malaysia

A flat rate of RM10 (£1.84) is applied per person per night.

Mexico

The state of Quintana Roo charges a Visitax of US$48 – this must be paid by every international traveler over the age of four who visits one of Quintana Roo’s tourist attractions, such as Cancun, Puerto Morelos, Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Cozumel, and Puerto Aventuras.

New Zealand

The International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) costs NZ$35 (£19) and is automatically added to the visitor visa fee.

COMING SOON

Edinburgh – The proposed tax would see overnight visitors pay a small additional charge on their accommodation. It is estimated that the levy could raise approximately £15 million per year, which could be used to invest in sustainable tourism as well as managing the impact of tourism on the city.

Plans announced for Edinburgh tourist tax

Manchester

Guests staying overnight will pay an extra £1 per room per night on their accommodation from April 2023, with 74 hotels and short-stay serviced apartments already signed up to the scheme. The levy will be used to fund the new Manchester Accommodation Business Improvement District (ABID), which aims to “improve the visitor experience” and “support future growth of the visitor economy” over the next five years.

Norway

Officials are considering introducing a tourist tax in 2024.

Thailand

Visitors will have to pay an entry fee of 300 baht (£7) from January 2023.

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