Guatemala: Cruise Ship Tax Under Study

Cruise ships promise a 40% increase in visits to the country if an agreement is reached not to collect the $10 per visitor departure tax.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The $10 per visitor departure tax fee was scheduled for implementation in January 2009. However, due to pressure from cruise ship companies that Guatemala would be removed from the list of destinations, implementation had been postponed until May 1.

At this time, the Congress’ Finance Commission is considering the validity of the tax on cruise ships. published: "According to [Roberto] Robles (director of the Guatemalan Institute of Tourism,) international cruise ship associations have advised INGUAT not to implement this tax because they would no longer include Guatemala as a destination."

More on this topic

Guatemala Eliminates Tax for Cruise Ships

October 2010

The suspension of the tax was made official on Tuesday by Congressional act.

Representatives of the Guatemalan Association of Cruise Tourism and the Institute of Tourism saw the move as positive to improve their competitiveness with other destinations.

Leonel Azurdia of the Association of Cruise Tourism, told that "the suspension of the tax, which was formalized last Tuesday by a congressional, gives legal certainty to attract more ships."

Tax to Cruise Ship Industry Could Be Sustained

March 2010

A discussion to impose a $10 levy to cruise ship tourists is back in Congress.

Back in November 2009, Legislative Decree 38-2009 suspended the collection of this tax, but President Álvaro Colom vetoed such decree.

More recently, the Constitutional Court (CC) ruled that it is not against the constitution to suspend collection of the tax. This has caused the discussion to go back to Congress.

Guatemala suspends visitor tax

January 2009

The $10 departure tax for visitors, which became effective yesterday, was postponed until May 1. reports: "Executives from the cruise ship industry and officials met yesterday in the country to reach an agreement regarding the controversial charge, which was suspended until next May or until an agreement is reached.

Arrival of cruise ships at risk in Guatemala

January 2009

Norwegian Cruise Line conditioned the arrival of its cruise ships to the country on whether the Government continues to insist on charging the $10 departure tax for each tourist. reports that "The company is threatening to take its 27 ships, which it was planning to bring to Guatemala this year, to other countries.

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