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Tax in Europe
Marc88
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Hello all,

I’m visiting Europe this summer and had a quick question about taxes in an effort to stay on budget. Here in Canada, consumers pay tax on top of the sticker price on an item at the register. I was wondering if there is a similar system in most European countries or is the price listed the price you pay?

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Don
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The price listed is what you pay. VAT varies from country to country, and among types of items, but it’s included in the price you see. (generally 17 to 25%, in case you were wondering)

oldlady
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Don, is there sometimes an extra tax on hotel or hostel rooms? I know the VAT is included in the room price, but it seems like I’ve paid an extra tax on occasion. Perhaps a local tax like the hotel/motel tax many US cities collect??

Don
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You caught me scratching my head. Maybe. I was thinking markets, restaurants, transit, attractions. But for hostels and hotels… you might be right. I’m trying to think if I ever booked hotels without VAT included (Denmark-incl, Norway-incl, Sweden-incl, Germany-incl, Scotland-incl, England-incl, Ireland-incl, Spain-incl, Hungary-incl I think, Czech Rep.-incl I think, Macedonia-incl I think, Austria-incl, Switzerland-incl, Netherlands-incl, Belgium-incl). This over the past several years, and of course is only a small sampling, but I think even hotels are supposed to quote the entire price. These were mostly booked from European booking sites. Maybe US booking sites break out tax separately on European hotels and hostels??

oldlady
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US booking sites always have a disclaimer that there might be an additional tax but 99% of the time there’s been nothing extra on the bill. I know I haven’t come across this often, but it seems like I had to pay a small tax/charge I wasn’t expecting at least once — maybe in Bled, Slovenia. It may have been the result of a mis-communication in the first place and it wasn’t a big deal in any case.