April bed taxes set another record
June 13, 2016 by Kevin Wiatrowski
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TAMPA (June 9, 2016) – Hillsborough County’s hotel bed tax report for May hit $2.9 million, setting a new record for the month and for the fiscal year to-date, according to new figures released this month by Visit Tampa Bay and the Hillsborough County Tax Collector’s Office.
The May report covers Tourist Development Tax (aka “bed tax”) levied on room-nights sold in April. It shows a 6.3 percent growth over the same month in 2015. The new numbers push total collections for the 2016 fiscal year to $20.6 million – more than 11 percent over the same period last year.
“These numbers show continued strength for Hillsborough County’s tourism industry,” said Santiago Corrada. “With major conventions on the horizon, a new ride coming online at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, the final segment of the Tampa Riverwalk opening soon, and new events like Fourth Fridays downtown, we expect Tampa Bay to continue drawing visitors at unprecedented numbers through the summer.”
Tampa Bay will host the Shriners International imperial session in July and the Prince Hall Shriners imperial session in August. Both promise to bring tens of thousands of visitors to Hillsborough County.
Hillsborough County’s 21,400 hotel rooms averaged 79.8 percent occupancy for the month of April, according to industry analyst STR, Inc. (formerly Smith Travel Research). In terms of hotel rates and profitability, Hillsborough County continues to outpace all but one or two of the 10 destinations across the country that are its benchmarks.
Occupancy spiked to 97.1 percent at the end of the month in conjunction with the April 29 concert by Beyoncé at Raymond James Stadium. It remained above 90 percent for that weekend, which included River Fest, Asia Fest and the annual Pan Am International Dragon Boat races.
April also saw Tampa Bay host the NCAA Frozen Four hockey tournament at Amalie Arena. The three-day event drew fans from Colorado, North Dakota, Massachusetts and Connecticut and helped push occupancy above 90 percent for the weekend.
About Visit Tampa Bay
Visit Tampa Bay encourages adventurous travelers to unlock our destination’s trove of unique treasures. We are a not-for-profit corporation that works with more than 750 partners to tell the world the story of our home – the hip, urban heart of the Gulf Coast of Florida.