KRALENDIJK – Following the regulation of the new tourist tax, known as the Visitor Entry Tax, the Public Entity of Bonaire has submitted an amendment proposal to the Island Council. By submitting this proposal, the Public Entity of Bonaire is complying with the promise to evaluate the Visitor Entry Tax effective July 1, 2022, within 6 months.
With the Visitor Entry Tax, the levies formerly known as “lodging guest tax” and “car rental tax” have been replaced. These former taxes were collected through accommodations and car rental companies and the new Visitor Entry Tax is collected directly from visitors. The Visitor Entry Tax, or tourist tax, applies to all non-residents of Bonaire, except Bonairean students studying abroad who travel to Bonaire. The groups to which the tax applies, as well as the validity period and level of the rate, were analyzed during the evaluation.
“The proposal submitted to the council responds to several points raised during the evaluation,” said Commissioner Thielman. ‘Take, for example, the validity period of the Visitor Entry Tax so as not to hinder so-called ‘island hopping’ and family visits to the other islands. Or the desire for a lower rate for those born Bonaireans living abroad. It also looked back on a well-run introduction, despite the very short time between enactment and enactment. And the introduction has ensured that the revenues, which are now much higher than before, also end up directly in the account of the Public Entity of Bonaire.
The improvement points included in the advice to the Island Council were done in consultation with Bonhata, TCB, and the departments of finance, JAZ, and economic affairs. And the advice was obtained from IND and Civil Affairs. The advice resulted in an amendment proposal to improve the regulation in several areas. The feasibility of the proposal was also carefully considered.
In summary, the Executive Council proposes to: equalize the Visitor Entry Tax for everyone who was born according to a passport on one of the islands belonging to the Kingdom, extend the period of validity for tourist visitors and to make an exception for medical dispatches with ZVK referral.
According to Thielman, with this proposal, the Public Entity of Bonaire is responding as much as possible to the questions and comments heard during the evaluation.