Santiago de Compostela wishes to introduce vacationer tax to avert ‘uncontrolled tourism’

“I want Santiago de Compostela to quit staying just a vacationer spot and a theme park,” mayor claims.

Santiago de Compostela, the vacation spot of Spain’s famed Camino de Santiago pilgrimage, needs to introduce a tourist tax to suppress overcrowding.

The well known destination in Spain’s northwestern autonomous local community of Galicia welcomed practically 440,000 ‘pilgrims’ in 2022. Its once-a-year average amount of guests exceeds 300,000.

Walkers choose a extensive array of pilgrimage routes starting in Spain, France and Portugal and ending at the city’s 9th-century cathedral. For Christians, the Romanesque basilica is considered to be the burial position of Saint James the Good, one particular of the apostles of Jesus.

Sworn in as the city’s first female mayor last thirty day period, Goretti Sanmartín of the Galician Nationalist Bloc (BNG) announced ideas to market sustainable tourism and make Santiago de Compostela a far better spot for locals to stay, in accordance to Spanish news agency Europa Push.

How a lot will Santiago de Compostela’s vacationer tax be?

The plan of a tourist tax was presented to hoteliers by Santiago’s previous mayor Xosé Sánchez Bugallo in April, Spanish radio station La Cadena SER reviews.

A regional tax that could be released in 2025 was proposed. It would be billed as a nightly fee by the resorts and is probably to cost concerning €0.50 and €2.50, based on the style of accommodation.

It is considered the tax could raise involving €2.5 and €3 million per year for Santiago, which would go towards protecting the city’s historic centre.

Mayor Sanmartín lifted the strategy all over again in her investiture speech, which laid out strategies for ‘conscious tourism’ in the metropolis.

“I want this municipality to cease being just a vacationer spot and a topic park,” she explained, according to Europa Press.

“I want a Santiago from which there is no want to flee thanks to uncontrolled tourism. We aspire to… enjoy a wealthy and prosperous tourism sector but also a relaxed and breathable city.”

She claimed that securing housing for locals would also be a precedence.

The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela itself is free of charge to enter, but website visitors can pay out a €12 rate to gain entire access to the museums, tower and cloister.

Exactly where else in Spain charges tourist taxes?

Vacationer taxes are not a new principle in Spain. Barcelona introduced a price in 2012, which has been steadily climbing since then. In April 2024, it will enhance to €3.25 per night time.

Valencia also options to introduce a tourist tax inside the future yr of between €0.50 and €2 to contribute to sustainable tourism.

Holiday getaway lodging on Spain’s Balearic Islands (Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza, Formentera), is also subject matter to a tax, which can achieve up to €4 per evening in substantial time.