This Spanish city might impose tourism tax soon: Here are the details

MADRID(a1tv news)The tourism tax seems to be becoming popular across the world as Spanish city Madrid might be the next to impose it, drawing mixed reactions.

The development comes as former tourism minister Reyes Maroto has implied that she would consider introducing a tourist tax if elected; she is now running to become mayor of the Spanish capital.

What gives credence to the fact that the tax might be actually imposed is the growing public opinion in its favour owing to multiple reason including excessive number of visitors entering the city. The former Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism also said she was in favour of introducing a tourist tax payable per night by most holidaymakers.

“The tourist tax does not have to be merely a tax, it has to be a tax that reverts to the tourism industry,” she stressed though.

On the other hand, the Madrid Hotel Business Association has opposed the idea, claiming it would dent a blow to the hotel sector and visitors.

‘Madrid is booming and becoming one of the most desired destinations for national and international tourists with a large hotel investment, without the need for a tourist tax,’ said its president, Gabriel Garcia Alonso.

This is not the first time the city frequented by millions is considering to charge tourists; the proposal first popped up in 2015 and subsequently in 2018 but has not seen the light of the day. 

The tourism tax is not alien to the country as Barcelona and Balearic Islands have already implemented such a tourism tax under which holidaymakers pay up to €4 extra per night during their stay. Moreover, in November 2022, Valencia approved the tax which will come into force in December this year and will range between 0.5 and 2 euros per day. 

Tourism in Spain is rebounding as the social distancing protocols have been largely relaxed. The country was visited by 4.1 million international tourists in January, 65.8% more than the figure for the same month in 2022. As far as spending is concerned, these travelers splashed 5.22 billion euros during their trips and stays, 2.18 billion euros more than in January last year, according to data published by the National Statistics Institute.

The tourism tax is being imposed across the world in multiple cities. Recently, Manchester became the first UK city to impose a tourist tax and everyone who stays in a city centre hotel or holiday apartment has to pay £1 per night, per room.

Officially called the ‘City Visitor Charge’, it is hoped that it will raise £3million a year; Edinburgh is also slated to introduce the same tax. 

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