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In July 2010 Barcelona Turisme was understood to be considering the possibility of introducing a tax on tourists in a bid to compensate for a reduction in state subsidies. A 1% rise in VAT shortly afterwards put paid to this, temporarily it seems. The story resurfaced in May 2011 when Jordi Portabella, the Vice President of Barcelona Turisme, was quoted as saying a tourist tax was on the cards, but gave no schedule. In December 2011 a hotel tax in Barcelona has became a reality when the Generalitat of Cataluña announced a tasa turistica will be levied on all hotels in Cataluña commencing on 01 April 2012. 

CEHAT (Confederación Española de Hoteles y Alojamientos Turísticos) are one of several hotel associations that immediately came out in opposition to the tax, citing it as an irrational and unfair one. 

As only PART of the proceeds will be allocated for the development of tourism, it shows that the underlying intent of the tax is primarily to garner funds arbitrarily.    

                               

TASA TURISTICA

Hotel Category
1-star to 3-star 4-star 5-star
BARCELONA €0.75 €1.25 €2.50
REST OF CATALUNA €0.75 €1.00 €2.50
CRUISES €2.50
NO. OF NIGHTS  The tax is levied on stays of 1 to 7 nights inclusive.
WHO IS EXEMPT  Children under the age of 16 are exempt.