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16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

Chicago
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16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

Hi,

As a non-Colombian, am I required to pay the 16% tax at hotels? Per Lonley Planet, I am not supposed to pay (?) as it is only a tax for Colombians.

I booked a hotel in Medellin online though Priceline and the reservation clearly states that my card will not be charged until I arrive. However, per my credit card company, I already have the entire hotel bill PLUS the 16% tax charged to my card (this is still more than 20 days before I arrive).

Any suggestions welcomed. I am going to call Priceline ASAP.

Thanks!

Kelly

Bogota, Colombia
Destination Expert
for Colombia
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1. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

Hi

The 16% Added Value Tax is not applicable to foreigners only if they only use the hotel part.

If they bought a package (hotel+restaurant, or hotel+airport transfer), Added Value Tax applies for all.

If you can read Spanish, you can check here: bogotacb.com/es/como-nos-afecta-el-nuevo-iva…

Bogota, Colombia
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for Colombia
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2. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

I forgot to mention that a lot of hotel owners "forget" that foreigners don't have to pay the 16%, and may use various false reasons (like it only applies to hotel nights bought from abroad, which is untrue). The goal of course if to keep the taxes for themselves. It can be a bit of an argument sometimes.

A lot of hotels in Bogota apply a 10% tax for everybody. Which can make sense from a business point of view, but legally absolutely wrong.

BTW, by saying foreigners, the law actually mentions: Foreigners NOT RESIDING in Colombia. For residents, the 16% applies.

Edited: 19 August 2013, 12:26
Medellin
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3. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

Despite what any law says - some hotels abide by it and some don't. The last one we used in Santa Marta said it would not apply, however they had to charge the credit card with the full amount however the card would not be charged (Colomban logic). We of course paid the 16 %. In Cartagena I gave up asking about it.

Recently completed a little survey of Medellin Hotels for a bunch of people that were coming and about 70% said they would not apply the charge to a foreigner when booking and paying in country. Medellin and Bogota certainly seem the most efficient in applying this.

s calif
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9 posts
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4. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

Would it be possible to take a copy of the law regarding the %16 hotel ivat not applying to tourists? I would like to print and take a copy with me to show the hotel. Having this information in both English and Spanish would be most helpful.

Wendy J

Bogota, Colombia
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for Colombia
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5. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

Wendy

Check this thread, there is a link to the law. In Spanish only of course. Why would Colombia edict laws in English?

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g297476-i4451-k697…

Dallas, Texas
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6. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

So i went and read the law in Spanish and it only seems to guarantee the return of your taxes paid with proper receipts etc. not the exclusion of them on a hotel bill (i specifically worried about Hilton Bogota that apparently wont remove the charge) Other problem is that buried in the El Dorado airport website is the fact that the office is only open Mon-Fri 7:30am - 4:30 pm. No weekends. Seems as if Colombia will get their (my) 16%

Bogota, Colombia
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7. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

In reality Colombia doesn't reinforce their IVA taxation laws; there is little follow up by the powers to be and some hotels are "non - compliant"...so if they make you pay the hotel tax don't expect to get it back.I recently did a test at BOG; paper work in hand; they refused to refund the hotel IVA,as a matter of fact the IVA form you fill out stipulates NO HOTEL IVA REFUNDS.

Suerte!

Houston, Texas...
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8. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

same reason the USA translates everything into Spanish in our new PC society.

San Francisco...
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9. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

Our experience trying to get our IVA tax back, as of January 2015: Hotel tax is not refunded only purchased goods. There is a DIAN office at El Dorado airport, at the far left end of international check in. They were open on a Saturday at 10:30 pm. Although we had around $600 US in receipts, we had already checked in our bags and were told that without the actual purchases, we couldn't get the refund. Also we were told that the total receipts had to add up to $280,000 COP minimum for any refund to be awarded. Not sure how many additional hoops they might throw in your way, but if you want to try, make sure to hit the DIAN office before you check your bags in.

10. Re: 16% Hotel Tax for Foreigners

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