Stil jete

What is tourist tax and why are many countries imposing it?

What is tourist tax and why are many countries imposing it?

Barcelona is among the top 20 summer destinations of 2024, and for anyone planning to visit there may be some additional costs.

Many countries across Europe, including Spain, Greece and Germany, have implemented foreign visitor fees to help support the local costs of doing business, particularly during the busy summer months.

What is tourist tax?

Tourism taxes are a fast-growing trend because it's an easy way for cities to raise revenue without taxing local citizens. It is also more politically palatable and has the added benefit of helping to tackle obesity.

The flocking to particularly popular places made famous by Instagram is simply out of control.'

Locals in places like Venice and Maui for example have picked up on it and are also becoming more vocal about problem tourists.

What you need to know about tourist fees abroad this summer

Tourism taxes are not yet that widespread, however most countries put it on the hotel bill.

Many hotels are now listing local taxes and fees in their online prices, but you can always call ahead to make sure you won't be hit with additional fees.

Destinations with tourist tax

Galapagos National Park is charging $200 as of August 1 to visit. Bhutan pays $100 a day. Wales and Hawaii are among the countries now considering tourist taxes.


Barcelona City Hall recently increased its tourist tax from €2.75 to €3.25 on April 1st.


The tourist tax for the Olympic host country is based on a municipal fee. The cost has typically been under $6 a night, but starting in January officials raised the visitor fee to as much as $17, depending on the type of hotel.


Earlier this year, the mayor of Seville, José Luis Sanz, announced on X plans to close the Plaza de España and charge tourists to finance its preservation and ensure its safety.

Sanz shared a video alongside his post showing missing tiles, damaged facades and street vendors occupying the steps.

The southern Spanish city will ask visitors to pay to enter the historic area that has been at risk of irreversible damage.


Earlier this year, the coastal city known for its canals implemented a €5 per day fee through a new booking system.

Travelers can download an app to pay and receive a QR code which will be displayed to enter the city as a visitor.

"It is not a revolution, but the first step of a road that regulates the access of daily visitors. An experiment that aims to improve the lives of the city, who lives and who works there. We will take it forward very humbly and with the awareness that there may be problems", the mayor of Venice Luigi Brugnaro declared in X in the announcement.