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Queensland considers introducing TOURIST TAX as the state struggles to bounce back from Covid

How your holiday could get a whole lot more expensive: Queensland considers introducing a TOURIST TAX as state struggles to bounce back from Covid lockdowns

  • Queensland plans to introduce tourist tax to boost state’s economy
  • Government believes levy could be worth $44 billion a year by 2032
  • The compensation would be comparable to the tax levied in Greece, Croatia, Italy and France

Queensland is considering introducing a European-style tourist tax as the sunny state tries to recover financially from the pandemic.

The government has formed the Tourism Industry Reference Panel, a team responsible for reviving the sector that has been devastated by Covid over the past two years due to border restrictions.

The panel has outlined a 10-year plan that includes a tourist tax, which will likely be charged for overnight lodging or access to national parks — a move that could pump $44 billion a year into QLD’s economy by 2032.

Queensland is considering introducing a European-style tourist tax as the state hopes to recover financially from the pandemic

Queensland is considering introducing a European-style tourist tax as the state hopes to recover financially from the pandemic

Domestic tourism has returned to pre-pandemic levels, but international tourism remains 60 percent lower than before Covid.

Areas such as the Great Barrier Reef, Daintree National Park and Surfer’s Paradise are all tourist attractions that could be affected by the levy.

Part of the money would go towards the maintenance of parks and other attractions.

Countries such as France, Greece, Croatia, Italy and Indonesia all levy a tourist tax, which is paid in accordance with the accommodation – one of the methods being considered by Queensland.

Areas such as the Great Barrier Reef, Daintree National Park and Surfer's Paradise are all tourist hotspots that could be affected by the levy

Areas such as the Great Barrier Reef, Daintree National Park and Surfer’s Paradise are all tourist hotspots that could be affected by the levy

‘The idea of ​​a visitor’s tax is not new. It has been modeled, researched and discussed for the better part of a decade,” the panel’s report says.

“While we appreciate the divided opinion on whether it is an appropriate way to raise funds, everyone we spoke to saw a greater need than ever for more funding during the recovery period from Covid-19.”

However, the report stated that a statewide tax could not be successfully imposed and that instead it was up to local councils to determine where to impose the levy and how much.

“One model is unlikely to work for the entire state,” the report said.

“Each mechanism should be flexible – can be varied at the municipality/destination level to suit local conditions.”

However, the report stated that a statewide tax could not be successfully imposed and that instead the local councils were responsible for instituting the levy and how much they charge.

However, the report stated that a statewide tax could not be successfully imposed and that instead the local councils were responsible for instituting the levy and how much they charge.

Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchcliffe said the move would help the state boost tourism levels rather than just restore them.

“We don’t just want to build back to where we were, we want to see the industry grow,” said Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchcliffe.

“We have very different destinations, which have very different needs.”

Cairns Tourism is calling for a tourist tax of ‘five to eight percent’, which would mean a significant increase in accommodation costs.

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