Tuesday, August 07, 2012
ITALY YACHT TOURISM SINKS
Italy can provide a good lesson for other countries when it comes to the management of their tourist dollars. The European financial crisis is now hitting the middle class in Italy. A new law that doesn’t allow hotels & resorts to accept cash payments of more than $1000 euro’s is keeping the big spenders away. Italian marinas have lost 20% of their core business because luxury yacht owners left in a hurry for Croatia, Malta & France when the government imposed huge new taxes for visiting yachts. Thinking that these wealthy yacht owners would anti up just because they are rich was a miscalculation. No one wants to pay taxes from hard earned money regardless of how much you have – especially taxes that are seen as unjust and a money grab. Yachts are mobile and they have options that they are taking. It hurts the Italian people too because the money lost from this business by far out ways the taxes and the money disappearing from the economy goes right to the bottom line of small tourist related businesses. Even Italians who normally go on vacation in August are staying home ... because they are feeling the squeeze financially and tourist dollars are declining. There is always the temptation to raise taxes to fund government waste and inefficiency in all countries ... and it rarely works because it just creates more inefficiency and drives entrepreneurs away. With the Euro pegged as a common currency and artificially maintained higher than it should be by the strength of the German economy the governments of some countries should be reducing the costs of services through reduced taxation to attract tourists - not scare them away.