‘It’s the principle’ Benidorm tourist tax plans divide British holidaymakers

The regional Government is planning to implement a tourist tax, at a cost of 50 cents to two euros per night (42p – £1.70). It will be up to individual municipalities within the region to choose whether to implement the tax or not.

Benidorm’s mayor, Toni Perez, said the tax was being implemented by people who “hate tourism”.

He said: “We do not understand that forcing a visitor to pay a fee is the best letter of introduction or example of hospitality that can be given. Benidorm will not apply it.”

The idea of a tourist tax in the popular resort of Benidorm divided British holidaymakers.

A top destination with British tourists, many Britons visit Benidorm on a yearly basis so would be impacted if a tax was implemented.

READ MORE: Costa del Sol hit by mass hotel cancellations

Express readers shared their opinion on with several saying they would not visit Benidorm if there was a tourist tax.

Deano206 said: “I will stick with Turkey, thanks!”

SJF said: “As if tourism hasn’t taken enough of a hammering with Covid.”

That view was echoed by tourism workers in Benidorm who have had a difficult couple of years with Covid restrictions.

Since Spain introduced a ban on unvaccinated British tourists, industry officials have claimed some Benidorm hotels have been “forced” to close early for the season.


Some readers thought that the local Government might be trying to encourage more affluent tourists to visit.

Northsider said: “A lot of European destinations are not happy with the number of visitors already.

“They are trying to attract a more affluent visitor in many places. If a tourist cannot afford the relatively minor sum for the proposed travel visa they may not be missed.”

As Benidorm’s mayor has said the resort will not apply the tax, it seems the destination is keen to attract as many tourists as ever.

However, in the Spanish Balearic islands, the famed party resort of Magaluf has announced plans to attract a different kind of tourist.

In a bid to end boozy British tourism, tourism officials in Magaluf have said they will be focusing on cuisine and cultural tourism in future.

The resort has introduced bans on party boats and all-you-can-drink deals to combat anti-social drunken behaviour in Magaluf.

One Express reader thought the potential tax didn’t seem too expensive saying: “About the price of one small beer per day. Will anybody actually notice?”

However, Sami7 said: “It’s not even the amount. It’s the principle.”

Although the Costa Blanca region hasn’t implemented a tourist tax, some readers had visited destinations with charges.

Sunshinesdad said: “It’s common in Switzerland, but you are given a tourist card allowing free local transport, reductions at museums and other attractions. Nobody complains.”

Spain’s Balearic islands and the region of Catalonia already have tourist taxes in place. Charges vary depending on the type of accommodation tourists opt for, with luxury options incurring a higher tax.

Daily Express

The Daily Express is a daily national middle-market tabloid newspaper in the United Kingdom. Published in London, it is the flagship of Express Newspapers, owned by publisher Reach plc. It was first published as a broadsheet in 1900 by Sir Arthur Pearson. Its sister paper, the Sunday Express, was launched in 1918.

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