September 27, 2019 - 16:01 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - City taxes across are commonplace across the continent and, according to new research, can add hundreds of dollars to hotel guests' bills, CNN reports citing new research.
The European Tourism Association (ETOA), the trade association for tour operators in European destinations, chas ollated data for 125 European destinations that charge a tourist tax. Taxes range from per person per night fees to a levy of the percentage of the room rate, which can increase final hotel bills tremendously.
Amsterdam -- which suffers from overtourism, with 18 million annual visitors dwarfing its 867,000 residents -- implements a 7% tourist tax.
The tax is applied nightly, on the net cost of a room -- excluding both breakfast and the 9% Dutch VAT rate.
But it means that in five star hotels, travelers can regularly be paying upwards of $100 for their stay.
The tax increased to 7% in October 2018. Previously it was 6% in the city center and 3% elsewhere.
What's more, Amsterdam is adding an extra €3 per person charge from January 2020.
The Dutch capital isn't the only place with high tourist taxes. Nearby Rotterdam adds 6.5% to each nightly bill, while Dortmund -- home to Germany's football museum and the country's second biggest soccer club -- charges 7.5%.
Berlin, Bonn and Bremen tax tourists at 5%. The only other destinations to levy a percentage charge on room rates are Vienna, which adds 3.2%, Budapest, which charges 4% -- though rates tend to be considerably cheaper -- and Bucharest which adds 1%.
All other destinations levy taxes on a per person per night basis. Some of the most expensive, perhaps for obvious reasons, are in tourist-heavy Italy. Stay in a five-star hotel in Rome and expect to pay €7 ($7.70) per person per night; Milan, Florence and Naples hover around the €5pppn mark for four- and five-star hotels.
Paris charges €5 if you stay in a super-luxe "palais" hotel, or €3.75 for a mere five star. Brussels charges a precise €4.24pppn. Swiss cities hover around €4, and six French destinations, including Lyon and Marseille, charge €3.30.
Greece levies its tourist taxes country-wide, charging from €0.50 for a one star to €4 for a five star.
Tourist taxes have often been touted as a penance for overtourism. Venice plans to implement an entry charge for visitors next year, starting from €3 ($3.30) off-season to €10 ($11) on peak days. That's in addition to its overnight tourist taxes, which start from €1.50 per person per night in one-star accommodation, going up to €5 for five star.
Venice's only low season is in January, when the charges are dropped to €0.70 and €3.50 respectively. It also knocks off 20% for hotels on the islands (or 10% for five star hotels on the islands) in order to encourage visitors into lesser trammeled areas.
However, other famously suffering destinations have failed to implement higher taxes. Barcelona charges €0.65 per person per night for a one to three star hotel, or €2.25 for a five star.
Dubrovnik -- which has had to limit cruise ships to deal with overcrowding -- charges a flat €1.35pppn.
In a bid to encourage guests to stay longer, several Italian destinations offer discounts for stays of multiple nights, including Amalfi, which offers half price taxes for stays of more than four nights.