7 Feb 2020

Auckland accommodation tax review dismissed by High Court

2:14 pm on 7 February 2020

The High Court has thrown out an application for a judicial review of a controversial tax on AirBnB businesses.

Airbnb is a website for people to list, find, and rent lodging.

Photo: 123RF

Bachcare filed the application for a legal review of the Accommodation Provider Targeted Rate, which was introduced by Auckland Council in 2017.

It applies to online accommodation providers that are rented for more than 28 nights per year on websites like AirBnB and Bookabach.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff welcomed the decision of the Auckland High Court dismissing the challenge, saying he is pleased but not surprised.

"Tourism has been booming. It is only fair that those benefiting from ratepayer funded tourism promotion pay a fair share rather than that cost falling entirely on ratepayers," he said.

"The targeted rate is a common sense tool that ensures accommodation providers who directly benefit from tourism are contributing to the costs associated with promoting events and marketing Auckland to the world."

AirBnB and Bookabach owners, who RNZ have previously spoken to, decided to shut down as short-term accommodation providers rather than pay the new rate.