Warning to tourists visiting Paris this summer who may face new £50 nightly fee

Paris Eiffel Tower
-Credit: (Image: AFP via Getty Images)

This summer, Paris is set to be flooded with hundreds of thousands of tourists as it hosts the 33rd Olympic games in July - and visitors are likely to have spend more.

With a staggering 10 million tickets up for grabs, it's predicted around half a million sports enthusiasts will flock to the French capital to cheer on their home nations. This comes in the same year Paris' officials have decided to hike up the tourist tax by a hefty 260 per cent for certain lodgings.

Airport transfer specialists at hoppa have compiled a handy guide for those planning to attend the Olympics this year, Nottinghamshire Live reports. The tourist tax is a levy imposed by local authorities on visitors to the region, with the aim of raising money to preserve the local area and ensure sustainable tourism in the future.

The tax amount fluctuates depending on the country, region, and the rating of the accommodation. In Paris, the rate currently swings between €2.60 and €14.95 per person per night, with children under 18 being exempt from the tax.

Typically, this fee is collected at the check-in desk upon arrival at your accommodation or location. Experts advise to be on guard against scams where bogus travel agencies demand the tax before you've even boarded your flight.

The view from a hotel in Paris
The French capital is one of the most popular designations for holidaymakers -Credit:Getty Images

Although the cost per person may seem relatively low, it can quickly accumulate if you're travelling as a group of four, since the charge in Paris is levied per person per night. The most significant increase in tourist tax has been imposed on those staying in palace-style hotels, where the rate has soared by 199 per cent from €5 (£4.29) in 2023 to €14.95 (£12.83).

For a family of four with adult children (those aged 18 and over), this could mean shelling out as much as €59.80 (£51.33) per night.

While most tourists visiting the French capital this summer will likely be staying in hotels and serviced apartments, the tax rate has nearly tripled for most of these accommodations:

  • A night in a five-star hotel will now cost you €10.73 (£9.21) per person or €42.92 (£36.84) for a group of four, marking an increase from €3.75 (£3.22) in 2023 or a whopping 186%.

  • A night in a four-star hotel will set you back €8.13 (£6.98) per person or €32.52 (£27.91) for a group of four, which is up from €2.88 (£2.47) in 2023 or a rise of 182%.

  • A night in a three-star hotel will now cost €5.20 (£4.46) per person or €20.80 (£17.85) for a group of four, marking an increase from €1.88 (£1.61) in 2023 or a rise of 177%.

  • A night in a two-star hotel will now cost €3.25 (£2.79) per person or €13 (£11.16) for a group of four, which is up from €0.90 (£0.77) in 2023 or a staggering 261% increase.

Despite Paris now officially having one of the highest tourist tax brackets in all of Europe, awareness of the new tourist charges remains low for a city soon to become the most talked about location on Earth over the summer.

With a 191 per cent surge in Google searches for 'Paris tourist tax,' the average monthly searches remain relatively low at just 210, considering the French capital is set to host one of the world's most significant sporting events.

In contrast, there has been a staggering 1019 per cent increase in searches for 'Venice tourist tax' on Google since last year, with a peak of 6.6k searches in April alone. This follows the recent announcement the Italian city would be hiking its day tripper tax to €5 (£4.23).

With the Olympics taking centre stage globally for two-and-a-half weeks over the summer, it's crucial Paris nails every detail, from accommodating spectators to managing logistics.

Interestingly, this will be the first Olympics to welcome spectators since Rio de Janeiro in 2016, due to the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic that delayed the Tokyo 2020 games until the summer of 2021.

The French government estimates the new tax will generate €423m (£363m), which will be used to fund essential public transport during the games, expected to face increased pressure due to the influx of tourists.

Despite the need for extra services throughout the duration of the games, this figure is more than double the initial €200m (£172m) initially considered sufficient to cover the additional public transport needs during the Olympics.

Ticket prices on public transport are set to surge, with the average fare for a single metro journey in Paris rising from a modest £1.80 (€2.10) to a heftier charge of £3.43 (€4), alongside an increase in tourist tax.

In light of these changes, Matthew Hall, Managing Director at hoppa, has sounded the alarm for travellers: "Tourist tax is often an unexpected cost for many, and with the Olympic games set to take place in Paris this year, travellers need to be aware of the recent increases, so they aren't left short when arriving at their accommodation."

He further cautioned holidaymakers: "Holidaymakers are also warned not to fall for potential scams where tourist tax payment is demanded upfront. The tax is usually collected by the hotel staff upon check-in at the venue itself."

Hall went on to advise: "However, you should not be contacted to pay this charge upfront, so make sure you verify any emails or texts you receive are legitimate and if in doubt, check with your hotel or travel provider directly."

Don't miss the latest news from around Scotland and beyond. Sign up to our daily newsletter.