Information for visitors on Berlin’s hotel occupancy tax

What is being taxed?

As of 1 January 2014, the federal state of Berlin will collect a Occupancy Tax on all
overnight stays in hotels in Berlin. A “hotel” includes any type of short-term, paid
accommodation, and the tax is due whether or not the hotel guest actually spends
the night in the room.

If a room is reserved, but the guest cancels the reservation before arrival, the
Occupancy Tax is not charged.

If the guest is in Berlin on business, the Occupancy Tax is not charged.

In this case, the guest must give the hotel satisfactory proof that his or her stay is for
business reasons. This proof must be provided at the latest by the time the guest
leaves the hotel.

If the bill is made out to the guest’s employer or is paid directly by the employer, or if
the reservation was made by the employer, no further proof is required.

Written confirmation from the employer, including the name and address of the
employer and the duration of the stay, or written confirmation from the guest
(including the same information) can also serve as proof.

People who are self-employed or are owners or co-owners of a company can provide
comparable proof. This could also be a written statement that includes the guest’s
income tax identification number.

Providing information to a hotel to prove that a stay is business-related is voluntary.
If the guest does not want to provide proof to the hotel, he or she can pay the tax and
then apply to the relevant tax office to have the tax reimbursed. Proof that the stay
was business-related must then be provided to the tax office.

If more than one person is staying in the room, the hotel must ask for proof from each
one of them.

Who is liable for the tax?

The hotel is responsible for collecting the tax and passing it on to the federal state of
Berlin.

How much is the tax?

The Occupancy Tax is 5% of the price of the hotel room (without extras, such as
meals, items from the minibar, the use of hotel services and facilities not included in
the room price, etc.).

How can you prove later that your stay was business-related?

Guests who cannot or do not want to provide proof that their stay was businessrelated
by the time they leave the hotel can apply for reimbursement of the
Occupancy Tax they paid.

This application must be submitted to the relevant tax office no later than four months
after the stay. Written confirmation that the stay was business-related and the hotel
bill or confirmation from the hotel showing how much Occupancy Tax was paid must
be submitted with the application.

If more than one person stayed in the room, the Occupancy Tax can only be
reimbursed to those who can show proof that their own stay was business-related.
The price of the hotel room will be divided by the number of people staying in the
room in order to determine what percentage of the Occupancy Tax will be
reimbursed.

Where can you find the official forms?

Which tax office is responsible for the Occupancy Tax?

Berlin’s Occupancy Tax is administered by one tax office:
Finanzamt (tax office) Marzahn-Hellersdorf
Allee der Kosmonauten 29
12681 Berlin
Tel. (for questions about the Occupancy Tax): (030) 9024 26976