Information about the tourism levy (city tax) in Bremen and Bremerhaven
In April 2012, a law was passed introducing a tourism levy (known as 'city tax') for the federal state of Bremen. In December 2012, amendments to this law were passed by the federal state parliament of Bremen.
The following provisions apply in respect of the city tax in the federal state of Bremen with effect from 1 January 2013:
Overnight visitors travelling for private/tourism purposes:
The city tax applies in the case of overnight stays by paying guests for private purposes in hotels/accommodation establishments in Bremen and Bremerhaven.
The tax applies as follows:
Amount incl. 7% VAT
Per night, adults
Superior hotels, minimum 4-star classification
Guesthouses, inns, holiday homes and apartments, campsites, motorhome pitches
Youth education establishments of a non-commercial nature, e.g. youth hostels, youth guesthouses and education centres, training ship Deutschland
The tax is applied for a maximum of seven consecutive overnight stays. If the guest stays longer than seven nights, no further tax is levied after the seventh night (section 3 (2) of the Bremen City Tax Law [BremTourAbgG]).
Overnight stays by children are not subject to the city tax.
Bremer Touristik-Zentrale (BTZ) has included the city tax in its quoted prices for private customers in accordance with the German Price Indication Ordinance (PAngV).
Overnight visitors travelling for business purposes:
Overnight stays that are necessary for business purposes, including overnight stays by those undertaking business on a self-employed basis, are not subject to the city tax (section 1 (4) sentence 1 BremTourAbgG).
The overnight guest must provide credible evidence of the business purpose of his/her visit to the hotel/accommodation establishment. The business purpose is deemed to be credible if the overnight guest has demonstrated it as such to the accommodation establishment by the end of his/her stay by way of an invoice issued to the employer or business owner for the accommodation or by way of a confirmation from the employer or business owner. In the case of a self-employed guest, self -certification is permissible (section 1 (4) sentences 2 to 5 BremTourAbgG). Confirmation must be provided using the official forms (available from the hotel or can be downloaded in advance).
Refunds: an overnight guest can apply for a refund of city tax paid in cases where the business purpose was not demonstrated to the accommodation establishment prior to the end of the guest's stay. The application must be submitted to Bremerhaven municipal council (Magistrat der Stadt Bremerhaven) within four months of the end of the stay, providing credible evidence of the business purpose of the overnight stay and the invoice or other documentation from the accommodation provider indicating how much city tax was paid (section 10 BremTourAbgG).
Bremer Touristik-Zentrale remains your specialist partner for private trips to Bremen and for all aspects of business travel.
Revision date: 2 January 2013