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Tourist tax brings in €41 million in 2014 for Catalan Government, a 6.56% increase on 2013

The Catalan Government earned €41 million last year thanks to the tourist tax, which represents a 6.56% increase over the figures from 2013. Since this tax was created in November 2012 with the aim of increasing revenue for reducing public deficit and having greater resources for tourism promotion, €82.3 million has been collected. Catalonia has been increasing its number of foreign visitors over the last two years, posting record figures of 15.6 million in 2013 and 16.7 million in 2014. Tourists pay the tax, which ranges from €0.50 to €2.50 per night per person, in relation to the type of accommodation, and the location. The tax includes several exceptions, such as for children, and it is not paid on stays of over 7 nights.

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10 April 2015 08:59 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (ACN).- The Catalan Government earned €41 million last year thanks to the tourist tax, which represents a 6.56% increase over the figures from 2013. Since this tax was created in November 2012with the aim of increasing revenue for reducing public deficit and having greater resources for tourism promotion, €82.3 million has been collected. Catalonia has been increasing its number of foreign visitors over the last two years, posting record figures of 15.6 million in 2013 and 16.7 million in 2014. Tourists pay the tax, which ranges from €0.50 to €2.50 per night per person, in relation to the type of accommodation, and the location. The tax includes several exceptions, such as for children, and it is not paid on stays of over 7 nights. When the tax entered into force, visitors were asked if they were bothered by it and most of them had an understanding response, stressing that such a tax is already charged in many tourist destinations in Europe and the States.


During the presentation of the this year’s figures, held on Friday in Barcelona, the Catalan Minister for Business and Employment, Felip Puig, who is in charge of Tourism, stated that the "tourist tax is accomplishing its objectives". "The tax is provoking a territorial balance effect; it is allowing greater seasonal adjustment of tourism; it is guaranteeing very good promotion of Catalan tourism within a really competitive environment", Puig added.

Furthermore, the Minister emphasised that the tax is being used to foster tourist industry funding promotion activities, financing tourist infrastructures and upgrading destinations. "The [Catalan] Government does not consider using the tax for other purposes away from those set in the law: promotion, infrastructure, development and tourist destinations", he said.

The revenue from this tax should increase in the coming years, stated Puig, due to the increase in the number of tourists, since the number of international visitors is expected to continue to grow and the domestic market is now recovering, and also due to greater transparency regarding tourist apartments In fact, in the last few months, many flats and houses rented by tourist have been registered and will start charging the tax. According to Puig, there are now 40,000 tourist apartments legally registered. The tax revenue from this type of accommodation increased by 18.2% in 2014, "due to the effort to provide a high-quality offering, [increasing] certification and registration figures", he stated.

€32.7 million of the €41 million was collected in hotels, while €2.3 million came from tourist apartments. Visitors from cruise ships brought in €0.27 million through the tax, a similar figure to those staying in country cottages (€0.265 million). The revenue from cruise ships grew by 35.2% and that from country houses by 32.9%. Stays in camping sites represented €2.5 million, growing by 5.1%.

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  • The Catalan Government presenting the results of the tourist fee (by M. Castillo)

  • The Catalan Government presenting the results of the tourist fee (by M. Castillo)
Tourist tax brings in €41 million in 2014 for Catalan Government, a 6.56% increase on 2013