Election manifestos fail to mention cut in Tourism VAT

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Election manifestos fail to mention cut in Tourism VAT

Related tags: Cut tourism vat, Labour party, Conservative party

The Cut Tourism VAT campaign has criticised the UK’s major political parties for failing to pledge to reduce the tax following the general election.

The UK charges VAT of 20% on hotels, visitor attractions and some restaurant services, compared to just 7% in Germany, 9% in Ireland and 10% in Spain and Italy.

The Cut Tourism VAT campaign, a coalition of over 40,000 hospitality businesses, is calling on the government to reduce the rate to 5%.

The Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat election manifestos make no mention the issue, even though the Lib Dems backed a cut in 2015.

Plaid Cymru are the only party to include a reduction as an explicit policy, stating that tourism taxes are ‘unfair’.

“Across Europe 33 different countries already enjoy the benefits of a reduced form of Tourism VAT and as a result UK businesses and consumers are suffering,” says Dermot King, managing director of Butlins and chairman of Cut Tourism VAT.

The campaign claims that cutting the tax could generate an extra £1bn for the Treasury over five years.

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