Amsterdam to put up tourist tax to cut back on stag night revellers



Amsterdam plans to put up its tourist tax in an effort to reduce the number of budget travellers coming to the city, the Parool said on Wednesday.

The aim is to stop large groups of backpackers and stag night revelers coming to the city and to shift focus on quality tourism, the paper said.

‘At the moment, 28% of bookings involve budget hotels,’ city alderman Udo Kock told the paper. ‘That has to be reduced.’

Increasing tourist tax will also bring in more cash for the city’s coffers. The Parool says the plan to scrap the tourist tax break on breakfast and agency fees will raise an extra €4m a year from 2017. In 2018, increasing the tourist tax for the city centre and reducing it in quieter areas will bring in €9m and encourage a better spread of tourists.

Airbnb will also pay more tourist tax to the city – €8m rather than €5.5m, the paper said.

Kock is also planning to change the way tourist tax is calculated. At the moment, tourists pay 5% of the cost of their room. However, he is considering introducing a split fee system – a fixed amount per night plus a percentage of the hotel bill.

A fixed fee of €10 plus the €2.50 variable tax would add considerably to the cost of a €50 budget hotel room, the alderman said.