William Eichler 08 February 2019

Edinburgh council votes in favour of ‘tourist tax’

Edinburgh council votes in favour of ‘tourist tax’ image

City of Edinburgh councillors have voted in favour for what could be the UK’s first ‘tourist tax’.

The Transient Visitor Levy (TVL) scheme would include a flat £2 per night room charge, applicable to all types of accommodation apart from campsites.

This extra charge would only be for the first week of a stay. This will help protect seasonal and festival workers who stay in Edinburgh for extended periods of time.

It is estimated the new scheme, which can only come into effect if the Scottish Parliament passes enabling legislation, would raise £14.6m each year.

‘The capital’s population is increasing rapidly and visitor numbers continue to grow, due to Edinburgh being a fantastic place to live, work, visit and invest,’ said council leader Adam McVey in January.

'Our economic strength has brought us a great deal of success as a city but the reality is, without an additional income stream, we will struggle to manage and support this success in future.

‘Tourism and hospitality are key drivers of our economy and this levy provides us with a way to sustainably support its continued success and reduce impacts on residents all year round.’

Sharpening the commercial edge image

Sharpening the commercial edge

The case for well-managed council commercial activity is one that needs to be defended if we want a mature and sustainable local state, argues Jonathan Werran.
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