Tourism Authority Defends Increase In Hotel Accommodation Tax

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Colin James

The CEO at the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority (ABTA), Colin James, is explaining the use of the 1% increase in the hotel tax.

He explains that the taxes will be used to mitigate the financial risks being born by airlines as they add more routes to Antigua.

James said the tax will provide greater comfort to airlines regarding the Antigua route.

He said easy air access into Antigua is one of the factors that visitors use in determining where to vacation.

On Tuesday the Senate approved the increase by amending the Antigua & Barbuda Sales Tax Act.

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10 COMMENTS

  1. This statement is confusing. Antigua as a destination desperately needs a better choice of airlines and routes. With additional seats and more competitive airline rates we will be able to fill our beds on island easier which means a greater tax contribution (at the existing rate).
    It is still not clear how the tax increase will comfort airlines based on the justification above.

  2. The intended use of the additional tax revenue (as articulated by Mr. James) differs to what the Minister of Tourism said in the House of Representatives. Fernandez suggested, during the debate, that the funds will be used exclusively for marketing the destination. Paying airlines to fly into the destination (by providing load guarantee subsidies) is not “marketing” as explained by Minister Fernandez.

    These guys need to get their stories straight.

    • Boss you missed this part (joint promotion for airlines):

      “Fernandez also stated that the monies collected will be placed into a special fund and will not be exploited. He revealed that the funds will be used to cover costs associated with the joint promotion for airlines coming to Antigua and Barbuda, among other matters that will increase revenue generated from the twin islands main industry ” see Hotel Accommodation Tax to be increased, OMG, Dec 4th

  3. I don’t think the tourist could care less about the above explanation. The tourist is interested in what his/her holiday will cost and in reality there are numerous other destinations that have beaches, good roads and towns and countryside that do not look like dirty unkempt ghettos that are cheaper than Antigua. So Mr. James and Max Fernandez can keep spouting excuses for adding yet another tax to this already over taxed island instead of admitting that monies are just constantly being squandered by (red or blue abuse of power) politicians…IMO the multi millions bail out for the cinema would have gone a long way with promotion advertising which would have benefited us, the people instead of benefiting one family who should be personally responsible financially for creating their own debt.

    • EXACTLY EVERYTHING YOU SAID…..WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT MORE TAXES ANTIGUA ISNT THE ONLY CARIBBEAN OFFERING SAND SUN & BEACHES …

      LOOK AT THE EYE SORES OF A SCENARY GOING ROYALTON …JOLLY BEACH… HERTIGE HOTEL ….THE MALL ROADS……INSTEAD OF REAL ROADS WHEN IT RAIN ITS A SWAMP AREA….NOT FORGETTING ALL THAT JERKKING TO REACH THOSE DESTINATIONS YOU COULD THROW UP…

  4. Mr James. I noted where you stated “easy air access is one of the factors visitors use when determining where to vacation” I am sorry sir but not all entirely true. While some might consider this others are looking for value for money. Not sure if you remember the $1 a day initiative which was introduced guest barked against it. They were ALREADY paying high taxes coming to Antigua each year and was not seeing any changes at the hotels for their money. Some repeaters said this would be their last they could go else where. Mr James these people can now go to all parts of UAE and Asia and get SUN SEA SAND entertainment and heavy feel of culture and a true meaning of Sense of Place. So tell me are we really willing to run the few guest that are coming. Last season ended very slow in the hotels. This season the hotels experience a very dry spell before Christmas. So please Mr James come talk to the grown folks properly now that you have written to the children

  5. Mr James one more thing maybe if you cut back on the lavish so called tourism trips and properly review expenses you could come up with a more suitable way of being able to generate more monies.
    Oh and to Mr Fernandez how do you explain both niece and nephews on the tourism board. Please enlighten us their value. Tired of governments wasting tax payers money and then coming with bogus shit for more

    • Yep…..all these fancy trip on tax payers …he probably wouldnt have gone in his own…..hes more like thepipped piper ….

      I cant wait for tourism to crumble and they have no choice to beg ppl to come ANTIGUA HE MAX DNT CARE …ITS ALL MONIES DIVERTING INTO THEIR POCKETS …

  6. We are not serious about tourism in Antigua. Look at the state of the roads, old cars and ghetto-like areas all over, a city that’s run down, and so much more to turn away visitors. Just today I passed a sugar mill tower covered entirely with bush and garbage all around. This place is just about talk, talk, talk and no real action to improve things.
    We boast our beaches and yet most of them have no public bathrooms or outside shower for the same visitors we claim to cherish so. They continue to fool people with talk of arrivals going up but what have they really done to indicate that tourism is truly our main bread earner and an industry we need?

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