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What is happening with French City/Tourist Tax collection?

What is booking.com doing with French tourist tax collection?

I see they now flag the guest will pay the room price + city tax, which is fine.

In November it was called an "extra charge" and included in the Total Price = Room price + extras, and they paid me Total Tax minus commission. So I can pay the city tax locally as usual. In December it was called "city tax" and sometimes the guest was charged the "room price" and sometimes the "total price", as I'm told by the website! But the tourist tax was missing from the payment to me.

Now I'm told by the help desk that its the law from 1/1/2020 that booking.com pays my city tax for me. As they have no information on how to do this from me, and have provided me with no evidence that they have done so,  I can't see that working smoothly. But in any case they are now witholding it from me from December. My worry is that I still have to pay the city tax locally and booking.com charges for it but does not pass it on.

Has anyone worked this out? Or has anyone had booking.com pay their local city tax for them?

cheers

 


8
pibomarco

Can you ask Booking.com again about this law and about them paying city tax in your behalf via extranet -> Inbox -> Booking messages, so that you get their written statement. 

10 months ago
1
Sarah Shorthouse

the response is "As per new French legislation which was effective since 1st January 2019, Booking.com is required to collect and remit tourist tax for its non professional partners in France. This will only be the case for the reservations of which Booking.com is facilitating the payment between the booker and the French partner."

I see this law also quoted on the Homeaway site. However when I asked "Are we going to see confirmation that booking.com has paid city taxes? I will still have to pay city tax for bookings made outside of booking.com" ... it was kicked upstairs to a specialist to answer. Still awaiting a response.

I am now guessing that booking.com will hold on to these city taxes on my behalf while they work out how to send them on to the right tourist board. It's not going to be easy as each French property location will have a different local city/tourist tax arrangements, with individual tourist accounts!  So I'm tracking what is withheld in the mean time. I guess it is the (new) law.

10 months ago
8
pibomarco

And Booking.com collects payments from your guests right?  I think you should contact your accountant or your local tourist board with this statement so they can confirm it or give you additional information about this matter.  

10 months ago
1
Sarah Shorthouse

It's worth checking Nov/Dec 2019 bookings if you are in France.

I had a booking in Dec where booking.com charged the guest total price = room price + city tax

A week later booking.com flagged the city tax in the Total price calculation, but told me I needed to collect it from the guest directly, as they only charged the guest the room price.

As it is law from 1/1/2020 that booking.com must collect and remit the city tax, I'm sure it will change again. And I see a guest in Jan has been charged the Total Price = Room price + city tax. 

10 months ago
8
pibomarco

What does it say about your city/tourist tax in Extranet -> Property -> VAT/tax/charges? Is it included or excluded?

 

Your previous post said that the law it's effective from 1/1/2019 in your last post it says that it's effective from 1/1/2020. Is this the same law? 

 

 

10 months ago
1
Sarah Shorthouse

sorry 1/1/20 was a typo, the law was effective from 1/1/2019. booking.com has had the extra city tax charges flagged for 2019 i.e. Total Price = Room Price + extras (city tax). But they used to collect only the Room Price from the guest, and leave me to collect and pay city tax.

In VAT/tax/charges it says "A city tax of € 2.48 per person, per night is not included". So this is why the Room Price is less then the Total Price i.e. city tax is added. 

This was all fine as I have been paying city taxes locally myself for several years.

But the recent change made I think in December was for booking.com to attempt to collect and remit the city tax themselves. I noticed this as they started deducting city tax on my invoices and have charged the guest the Total Price. However, this has been a little inconsistent for the last few weeks, and has changed twice in December. So I am looking for clarity ...

 

10 months ago
8
pibomarco

I think you should include city tax then. If it's exluded it means that you need to collect this tax from the guest directly.

10 months ago
1
Sarah Shorthouse

you don't get to choose. For French properties on the booking.com site you have to say if you are a professional renter or not, and classify the property. After entering these details, it is out of my control whether booking.com charges the guest room price or total price (room price + tourist taxe).

For 2019 booking.com was flagging the tourist tax as an extra cost, but leaving it to the renter to collect. In december , the changes look to have happened that I flagged.

I'm wondering if anyone else with a French property has resolved this issue?

 

10 months ago
8
pibomarco

I think you can choose.. I also can't change if tax is included or not, but you can request a change and BDC will do it. At least for better transperancy. You could also link your property to better understand how the pricing looks. 

 

It seem that BDC actually took this law in full effect in December. While you wait for an answer you can still ask your local tourist board, you can also contact Booking.com's account manager from your area. 

 

There are some french hosts on forum, but probably they don't follow much.. They are more active in threads regarding the new review score system. :)

10 months ago
1
Sarah Shorthouse

thanks marco

what does "link your property" mean?

I'm awaiting a response from BDC. I'd like them to just be consistent on this. I have had 4 changes since November.

My preference is that they collect the tourist tax upfront (as I am not at the property), and pay it to me so I can submit it as normal.

They did this once. I have requested  this already, but they quoted the 1/1/2019 law at me

 

10 months ago
10
M Adamopoulou

Thanks Sarah for posting...Didn’t know about this city tour tax in France.

In searching I found this...

The tourist tax is intended to contribute to the development and promotion of tourism by enabling French municipalities, including Paris, to finance expenses linked to tourist arrivals or to the protection of their natural areas. Other European countries (Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, the Netherlands, and Greece) have also taken the decision to apply a tourist tax.

 

Below are details of the amount of tourist tax in Paris by category of accommodation (January 2020):

CATEGORIES OF ACCOMMODATIONNET RATES PER PERSON AND PER NIGHT

Palaces€5

Hotels and aparthotels, furnished rentals: 5 stars.€3.75

Hotels and aparthotels, furnished rentals: 4 stars.€2.88

Hotels and aparthotels, furnished rentals: 3 stars.€1.88

Hotels and aparthotels, furnished rentals: 2 stars. Holiday village: 4 and 5 stars.€1.13

Hotels and aparthotels, furnished rentals: 1 star. Holiday villages: 1, 2 and 3 stars. Bed & Breakfasts. Youth hostels.€1

Campsites: 3, 4 and 5 stars. Pitches on camping-car sites and tourist parking places per 24-hour period.€0.75

Campsites: 1 and 2 stars. Marinas€0.25

Accommodation waiting for classification or without classification.Tax proportional to the cost of the night: €2.44 or €2.48or €2.88

Probably this tax will effect all of us.

Good luck.

 

 

10 months ago
1
Sarah Shorthouse

yes I have been paying city taxes locally myself for several years on our French rental apartment.

The change in December is that booking.com has collected this tax from the guest (most of the time), and I am not sure how/when/if they are going to remit it ...

10 months ago
1
Sarah Shorthouse

As an update, I have been told again that BCM will collect all tourist tax on behalf of guests from Jan2019, and submit it on my behalf. (But not how).

They now seem to be calculating the tourist tax and billing the guests for it as part of the invoicing. It is not being paid to me, so I will have to wait and see if they manage to submit it to the local tax authorities correctly.

I have not received a response to the question of how will I know if and when the tax has been submitted.

As I have a legal obligation to ensure local Tourist tax is paid for my property, and I have not had a confirmation of payment of Tourist tax by BCM, I remain uneasy.

Has anyone with a French property seen a successful payment of Tourist Tax by BCM yet?

 

10 months ago