|Subject: Transient Occupancy Taxes|
Good Morning travel aficionados,
Last night while watching some of the hoopla regarding this weekend's Super Bowl in Houston (arguably America's largest sporting event) a short piece was presented regarding Reliant Stadium (the site of the game).
A large portion of the cost for this $700 million facility was shouldered by people such as ourselves-travelers and tourists. Cities and municipalities throughout the U.S. have embraced the Transient Occupancy Tax, T.O.T., as a means of financing these huge public work projects. These taxes are aimed at travelers who do not have a vote within the political boundaries of the area in which they are levied. Therefore the politicians do not have to face the consequences of a disagreeable electorate (in regards to the tax) come election time.
We, as travelers, see these taxes on our hotel and car rental bills. Houston, according to the news piece last night, now levies a 15% tax on car rentals and 10%+ tax on hotel rooms. Other cities within the U.S. levy even higher T.O.T.'s.
Now, I'm curious if our members are familiar with this system of taxation. If so, how do you, as a traveler, try to avoid the higher taxes? One method often suggested on TheTravelzine is to not rent one's car at the airport but at an off airport facility. Any other methods of avoiding the tax? And how about outside the U.S.? I'd imagine this clever method of taxing without representation has spread throughout the globe. What say you Ziners?
John preparing to throw the tea overboard in San Diego