Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Edinburgh rejects 'bed tax' plan

Plans for a so-called "bed tax" in Edinburgh are set to be scrapped.

The move to charge hotel visitors a small levy for every night they spend in a hotel in the capital had been put forward as a way of raising extra money to promote the city.

The city council had hoped the scheme could raise up to £10m a year.

But a report before councillors said the proposal was unpopular, and recommended that alternative ways of generating funds should be found.

If the proposals had gone ahead, visitors would have been charged an extra pound or two for each night they stayed in an Edinburgh hotel.

Cities including Venice, New York and Vancouver have already introduced similar scheme - but so far no UK cities have followed suit.

The report due to go before before Tuesday's meeting of the city council says the proposal was not supported by the Scottish government and there was little appetite for it amongst hoteliers.

Businesses told the council that they would not favour any compulsory scheme, but would prefer some sort of voluntary system which could raise money to market the city.

One suggestion is for more Business Improvement Districts, in which firms invest collectively to help to upgrade their areas.

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