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Updated January 2024
As the travel industry continues to show signs of recovery, travellers are at a gallop to visit many of the world’s favourite tourist destinations. Some governing authorities, however, are concerned with the possibility of over-tourism as an impact of this phenomenon. As such, numerous countries are turning to tourist taxes as a means of mitigating the situation.
In this article, we have gathered information about the countries applying taxes on tourists. Be sure to factor in the extra costs if you’re planning to visit any of the destinations listed below.
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Tourist tax news
The government of Indonesia has introduced a new tourism tax of IDR 150,000 (USD 9.68) for visits to Bali, effective from 14 February 2024. This tax will be imposed per person per visit and applies to children as well. It is an additional fee alongside the existing IDR 500,000 (USD 32.27) charge for the 30-day visa on arrival.
Given Bali’s popularity among global tourists and the expected surge in visitors during peak seasons, officials are implementing systems to streamline the process and prevent long queues at Bali airport. More than 20 officials will be stationed to handle payments before tourists proceed through immigration counters. Payment for this tax can be made in Indonesian Rupiah, and international cards are also accepted.
Why do some countries impose tourist taxes?
Many governments are now grappling with the issue of over-tourism. In an effort to balance the economic benefits of tourism with the need to preserve their natural and cultural heritage, an increasing number of countries are turning to the implementation of tourist taxes.
These taxes are designed to mitigate the negative effects of over-tourism, such as overcrowding, environmental degradation, and strain on local infrastructure.
Countries applying taxes on tourists
The following countries are currently imposing taxes on tourists.
As travelers flock to Austria once more, they will be greeted with a new addition to their hotel bill: an overnight accommodation tax. This levy varies by province, and in the charming city of Vienna, visitors can expect to pay an additional 3.02% per person per night when staying at a hotel.
When visiting Belgium, travelers will be subject to a tourist tax when staying at accommodation places throughout the country. The cost of this tax varies based on the location of the hotel, its size and its rating, but generally, it is around USD 8.23 per person per night.
Travelers to Bhutan can expect to pay a relatively high tourist tax, especially during peak season. This tax typically includes a cost of USD 247 per day, but it also covers a range of expenses, including accommodation, a guide, transportation within the country, entry fees to attractions, and food. As for the travelers who pay in dollars, there is a reduction in the daily tourist tax if they stay longer in the country. Those paying for 4 days’ daily fees can stay for another 4 days for free, while those paying for 12 days can stay for an entire month.
Tourists visiting Bulgaria are required to pay a small nightly fee, typically around USD 1.63 per person, for their overnight stays. This fee may vary depending on the region of the country and the type of accommodation.
Many Caribbean islands require tourists to pay taxes upon arrival; these taxes are usually included in the departure fee and the cost of hotel accommodation. The islands include:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- The Bahamas
- The British Virgin Islands
- The Cayman Islands
- The Dominican Republic
- St. Kitts and Nevis
- St. Lucia
- St. Vincent and the Grenadines
- St. Maarten
- Trinidad and Tobago
- The US Virgin Islands
The amount of taxes charged to tourists varies depending on their destination and type of accommodation, with rates ranging from USD 14 to 48.
Croatia has been implementing a tourist tax for several years, and in 2019 they increased the fee, particularly during the peak summer season. Tourists visiting Croatia have to pay a fee of around USD 1.45 per night per person for their accommodation during their stay.
In the Czech Republic, only tourists visiting the capital city of Prague are required to pay a tourist tax. The fee for staying in Prague is around USD 1 per night per person for a maximum of 60 nights. It is important to note that this tax only applies to individuals over the age of 18.
France has implemented a tourist tax which is added to the hotel bills of visitors. The amount that tourists have to pay when staying in France varies by city but will be no higher than USD 4 per person per night.
In certain German municipalities, visitors may be subject to a tax when staying in a hotel. The fee is generally around 5% of the total cost of the hotel stay.
The amount of tourist tax that visitors to Greece are required to pay can vary depending on the type of accommodation they choose. The fee can reach up to USD 4 per night per room.
In Budapest, Hungary, visitors staying in accommodation places must pay an additional fee of 4%, based on the cost of their room. This tax is specifically applied to visitors of the capital city.
Indonesia has introduced a tourist tax in the popular destination of Bali, effective from 14 February 2024. Travelers must pay a fee of USD 9.68 per person per visit, including children.
Other cities in Italy, in addition to Venice, have also implemented tourist taxes. One example is Rome, which charges a fee for foreign visitors ranging from USD 3.26 to 7.21 per person per night.
Tourists visiting Japan are required to pay a departure tax of around USD 8.69 when leaving the country. The fee is used to manage the tourism sector more effectively, according to authorities.
Tourists staying in Malaysia will be required to pay a nightly fee, which on average is around USD 4, depending on the type of accommodation they choose.
Other than Australian visitors, travellers coming to New Zealand are required to pay USD 22.82 as a tourist tax.
Visitors to the Netherlands can expect an additional 7% charge for their hotel room as part of the country’s tourist tax rules.
All travelers aged 13 and above will be subject to Portugal’s tourist tax, about USD 2 per night. This tax is applicable for the first seven days of their stay. Furthermore, as of January 2024, the same fee will be charged to cruise ship operators for each tourist arriving at Lisbon port via a cruise ship.
The tourist tax here is based on the accommodation type, which is also influenced by its location. It costs around USD 3 in larger cities.
Some regions in Spain other than the aforementioned cities have applied tourist tax. The tourist tax amounts to as high as USD 4, depending on the type of accommodation.
Based on the location, visitors coming to Switzerland may have to pay around USD 2.39 per night. This only applies if their stay period is under 40 days.
In the United States, most places that offer lodging to tourists charge taxes on the rental of the accommodation. The taxes can be as high as 17% of the total hotel bill.