Funchal sets sights on introducing tourist tax
Local authorities are planning to tax visitors 2 euros per day for overnight stays
- January 26, 2020 13:00
- Anton Stoyanov
The capital of the Portuguese island of Madeira is planning to introduce a new way to fill up its coffers. The city’s administration is currently contemplating a new tourist tax that will be imposed on visitors coming to the city – 2 euros per day, per person, for overnight stays for the first 7 days of staying in Funchal.
The capital of Madeira is one of Portugal’s biggest tourist destinations, visited by thousands of people from across the world. According to the mayor of Funchal Miguel Gouveia, the introduction of the tax will lead to a substantial increase in revenue for the city – an estimated profit of around 8 million euros per year.
Embracing the example of other cities
Many cities across Portugal and Europe have already begun collecting a tourist tax from visitors. Not long ago, authorities from the municipality of Vila Nova da Gaia announced that they had collected over 1 million euros and are planning on using them to boost local tourism.
Meanwhile, in Porto, authorities had counted over 10 million euros to have been generated by their own tourist tax – money that is currently being spent on ecological initiatives aimed at reducing the environmental impact of visitors to the city.
“The tourist tax seems to me to be inevitable, following what the largest cities in the country have been implementing and also the major European cities”, stated the mayor of Funchal after announcing his plans to introduce the tax, as quoted by publico.pt.
He continued by stating that the revenue from the tourist tax will be used for the city’s development in three main areas – infrastructural improvement of tourist areas, co-financing of city management activities and financing of a so-called “social distortion programme” – an initiative aimed at helping locals cope with the increasing touristic pressure on the city.
A final vote on the tourist tax will be held in April – right at the start of the 2020 active tourist season.
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