The cost of travel, like the cost of pretty much everything, only seems to be on the up. Sure, you can still bag a bargain flight or sneakily scour Airbnb for a deal, but travelling on a budget tends to take time and effort.
Add to that the tourist tax, another expense to travellers that’s becoming more and more common. But while the news of another fee being added to the list of holiday expenses might be frustrating, it’s all done with good intentions.
Paris is set to increase its tourist tax. As it stands, visitors to the French capital currently pay between €0.25 (22p, $0.26) and €5 (£4.30, $5.30) per night, depending on their accommodation type and the area of the city they’re staying in.
The tax applies to those staying in tourist residences, hotels and outdoor accommodation such as tents and caravans. The proposed increase, which is due to be implemented from 2024, could see the nightly fee rise by 200 percent. For example, the nightly fee for a double room in a five-star hotel could be up to €11 (£9.50, $11.56).
The extra cash generated from the tax will apparently be put towards improving the city’s public transport (and hopefully some fumigators for the bedbugs).
Amsterdam is the other European city upping its visitor fees, with an increase of 12.5 percent on the cards from 2024 for those staying in the city overnight or visiting on a cruise ship.
The average tax per traveller per night will increase from €15.25 (£13.17, $16.03) to €21.80 (£18.83, $22.91), and for cruise passengers, from €8 (£6.90, $8.41) to €11 (£9.50, $11.56).
Much like Paris, the money accumulated from this fee will be funnelled back into improving the city and easing the financial pressure on residents, who might have had their property taxes or parking fees increased otherwise.
In a statement, the city said it was increasing to ‘so that visitors [can] make a bigger contribution to the city … [It] will also help tackle overtourism and mean that the financial burden for Amsterdammers and Weespers will not increase.’
According to DutchNews, this is now the highest tourist tax within the European Union, and the fourth highest in the world.
The rise of the tourist tax
Amsterdam and Paris aren’t the only destinations to implement a tourist tax – Venice, Iceland, and Bali have all recently announced they’re upping the fees for visitors. Tourist taxes are one way popular travel destinations can combat problems with overtourism. From asking visitors to stay away to capping daily numbers, read up on all the ways tourist hotspots are keeping overtourism at bay.
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