Scottish hoteliers warn against introduction of tourist tax

 Tuesday, March 5, 2019 


Leading Scottish hoteliers have cautioned against the industry’s ability to invest and create jobs will be seriously affected by introduction of tourist tax.


Industry figures say that implementation of a tourist tax will fuel global perceptions that Scotland is one of the most expensive visitor destinations in the world, with UK VAT (valued added tax) the highest in Europe and Air Passenger Duty the steepest in the world.


Supporters of a tourist tax, including City of Edinburgh Council, opined that the funds raised by a transient visitor levy would be utilized in public services used by tourists.


Calum Ross, owner of the Loch Melfort Hotel near Oban, said that he “agrees wholeheartedly” that a tourist tax will cause problems in vital investment in the hotel industry.


Russell Imrie, the managing director of Queensferry Hotels and the president of Best Western Great Britain, said that a tourist tax is “absolutely” a threat to investment and that politicians are ignoring the perception that it creates internationally regarding Scotland.


He further said, “The tourist industry feel extremely aggrieved, let down, and it is just another example of the government not treating the industry seriously.”


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