City of Bath revives plan to impose £1 tourist tax but hoteliers are wary

Published on : Thursday, January 11, 2018

bathThe city of Bath, England, is planning to ask the government for the power to charge its many visitors a tourist tax.



According to the plan, they would like to levy of about £1 or more to the accommodation bills of the million or so tourists who visit the Georgian city every year and stay overnight. If implemented, this can help to raise extra cash in times of austerity although many hoteliers are reluctant to charge tourists as they think that might put off some of them, which may be difficult to administer. Bath has long considered raising a tourist tax but had previously been told by Westminster it would not be allowed to.



After it emerged at the end of last year that Birmingham might be given the go-ahead to impose a levy on visitors to help pay for the 2022 Commonwealth Games, Bath decided to revive its plan.




According to Tim Warren, the council leader, they believe that considering the numbers of visitors who come to Bath a small fee for overnight stays is the way forward. This would go to service the tourism budget and funds that would have usually been diverted there would be free to be put to use elsewhere.



The Liberal Democrat councillor Dine Romero commented that most residents will find a good idea however, the real worry would be for the bed and breakfast level of establishments as a pound extra does make a difference in that market to whether people choose to stay there.



Another Labour councillor, Robin Moss thinks that most of the European cities have tourism tax and doesn’t think it would affect tourism but bring in much-needed revenue.



About 5 million daytrippers come to Bath every year and tourism supports about 10,000 jobs in the city and surrounding areas.



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