We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Taxes

Taxes

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This post was determined to be inappropriate by the TripAdvisor community and has been removed.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

Our staff may also remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason. Thanks for being a part of the TripAdvisor travel community!

Removed on: June 12, 2018, 1:35 am
Corona del Mar, CA
Destination Expert
for San Diego, Orange County, California
Level Contributor
57,467 posts
431 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Taxes

It is called freedom/

Each locality gets to set their own structure for taxation and other laws.

Richmond, California
Destination Expert
for Big Sur
Level Contributor
3,522 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Taxes

As noted above, we believe in a decentralized system of government, and our states and cities are free to set their own tax rates. Our tax system is the way it is. Are you here to lecture us?

The only taxes a tourist generally has to pay are sales taxes on restaurant meals, drinks, etc. and purchases in stores, which are generally less than 10%, and hotel taxes, which generally range from 10-18%. The levels are different in each city, and can be Googled if you really want to know. There is no federal VAT or anything like that in this country.

Edited: June 11, 2018, 1:20 pm
Elk Grove...
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong
Level Contributor
19,178 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Taxes

Venting is not going to help you get your questions answered.

For tourists, one will often face California State Sales Tax. In 2018, The statewide California sales tax rate is 7.25%. However, individual cities/localities may impose a small, additional tax on top of the state sales tax. Thus the total sales tax may be 8% to 9%.

You pay sales tax when you purchase something from a store, except fresh produce which are not taxed. When you eat out or drink in a restaurant/bar.

There are other types of taxes tourists will face: typically hotel tax of some kind to stay at a place. It varies quite a bit. You need to figure probably at least 10%, typical 15%, some maybe higher, I am not sure, to the basic room rate. Rental car tax - or some other special taxes. Again depending on location.

Tips are not taxes. They go to the servers/waitstaff or the restaurant. Not the government. The typical range is 10% to 20%.

Edited: June 11, 2018, 1:31 pm
Mentioned in this post
LA
Level Contributor
11,200 posts
1 review
Save Reply
4. Re: Taxes

Bless your heart

Yucaipa, California
Destination Expert
for Anaheim
Level Contributor
20,940 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Taxes

"Bless your heart"

Ditto. :) Sometimes a Southern saying covers it all. Thanks for keeping it simple and sweet.

Pacifica, California
Destination Expert
for Pacifica
Level Contributor
10,625 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Taxes

Every country has its bewildering idiosyncracies. Taxes and tips fill that role in the US, while in New Zealand, it's driving on the "wrong" side of the road.

For California, you can roughly assume 10% for taxes, and 15%-20% for tips. While it's confusing, the total final price is still going to be similar to what you'd pay in New Zealand. We just don't bundle everything together into the displayed price.

Lots of people visit California and somehow manage to survive our system of commerce. I'm sure you will, too.

You can google to read more about taxes and tips in California, if you haven't already done so.

Mentioned in this post
Silicon Valley, Ca
Level Contributor
2,660 posts
57 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Taxes

Hotel tax will be similar here to NZ GST. Sales tax in restaurants here will be lower.

Yucaipa, California
Destination Expert
for Anaheim
Level Contributor
20,940 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Taxes

I honestly think that if taxes were not itemized separately and they were added into a total so that we only saw the final price, as suggested, most Californians would be very angry. We like to know exactly what we are paying for. (Of course, taxes are added into the cost of a gallon of petrol in California and not itemized.)

Mentioned in this post
San Francisco, Ca
Level Contributor
19,778 posts
76 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Taxes

For hotels and rental cars, taxes and most fees should be included in the price given before you finalize an on-line booking. If you want a simple way to estimate, add 10% to all purchases for taxes and 15-20% for restaurant meal tipping. That's accurate enough for budgeting purposes.

California
Destination Expert
for Grasse
Level Contributor
8,918 posts
80 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Taxes

Just beware of the hated "resort tax" that all too many hotels are now tacking onto room charges, even if the place isn't a resort. Just a new way to add extra dollars for the business.

The easy way to calculate restaurant tips is to double the sales tax shown on the bill.