Barcelona set to increase tourist tax to €4 per night

City council asks Catalan government to amend law to allow further rises

Tourists approach the Sagrada Família
Tourists approach the Sagrada Família / Pol Solà

ACN | @agenciaacn | Barcelona

June 28, 2024 06:44 PM

Tourist taxes in Barcelona are set to rise from a maximum of €3.25 to €4 per person per night after the city council gave its support to the measure on Friday.

The council is also urging the Catalan government and Parliament to modify the law to remove the current cap on local tourist taxes so the surcharge can be increased even further.

The municipal government announced that it will bring the proposal to the finance committee in July. All parties supported it except for the conservative People's Party and far-right Vox.

Esquerra councilor Elisenda Alamany said that Barcelona collects €95 million from the tourist tax, but the direct expenses caused by tourism in cleaning, security or transport amount to €142 million, meaning a deficit in the municipal coffers of around €50 million.

Specifically, Barcelona collects around €70 million per year from the municipal surcharge on the tourist tax. From the Catalan government tax, €40 million is collected in the Catalan capital, of which €20 million is kept by the council. With the increase from €3.25 to €4 per night, the city council expects to raise around €20 million more and reach €115 million in total.

The Deputy Mayor for the Economy, Jordi Valls, hopes to be able to approve the rate in July or September with it coming into force in October. If delayed, it may not be applied until April.

Valls pointed out that legally some of the taxes raised must be allocated to promoting tourism, but the rest can be invested in cleaning, transport, trade fair activity and the management of the city's Heavily Touristed Areas (ZGATs).