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Greece Transforms Tourist Tax into Environmental Levy

A vibrant blue doorway framed by whitewashed walls and bougainvillea welcomes visitors to a secluded Greek isle.

Leveraging its allure as a destination, Greece introduces a climate levy for hotels and accommodations, earmarking proceeds for vital environmental restoration.

Commencing this year, Mediterranean lodgings will implement a climate levy on tourists. Essentially, it's a rebranding of the existing bed tax, but with a twist—higher rates during peak tourist seasons when Greece draws most visitors to its urban hubs, coastlines, and islands.

The surplus revenue generated will seed a reserve fund dedicated to post-natural disaster reconstruction. Greece's susceptibility to climate change and over-tourism-induced wildfires and floods underscores its unique vulnerability.

The levy's application hinges on both seasonality and accommodation type. Unlike its predecessor, the new tax extends to short-term rentals via online platforms.

Guests in apartments and one- to two-star hotels will bear a 1.5 euro charge, escalating to 3 euros for three-star accommodations, 7 euros for four-star stays, and 10 euros for luxurious five-star hotels. These rates mark a significant increase from the previous 0.5, 1.5, 3.00, and 4.00 euros across categories. The former rates persist during the off-peak season from November to February.

While online booking prices won't reflect these taxes, guests must be prepared to pay on-site during check-in.

The government anticipates a 300-million-euro yield from this levy. Yet, the country's hoteliers express apprehensions that it might dent Greece's attractiveness as a tourist hub.


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