Culture tax? What you need to bear in mind as our guest!

From the 1st of December 2014 we must, just like all other hotels and guest houses, charge the so-called “culture tax” to our overnight guests on top of the room price itself. There is an exception for those guests who are staying in Cologne on a “compulsorily” basis, i.e. for work or business.

The cultural tax fee amounts to 5 percent of your accommodation costs, i.e. to be placed on top of the gross accommodation sale. It is the hotelier’s responsibility to collect the amount from the guest. Those who are staying on a “compulsory basis”, for work purposes, must fill out a corresponding form for “dependent employees” or for “businesspeople and the self-employed”. They shall, in addition to their personal data, also indicate their identification or passport number as well as their tax identification number, if they are self-employed. Employees must attach a signed statement from their employer to the form. If we do not receive all the required documentation we will have no choice but to add the culture promotion tax to the guest’s bill.

Guest staying in Cologne for work or business should therefore arrive at the hotel prepared:

  • As a dependent employee, you should have a signed statement from your employer, as well as your passport or personal identification with you.
  • As a businessperson or if you are self-employed, you should have your tax identification number as well as your passport or personal identification with you.

We shall then keep the relevant form at hand for you. It is, however, advisable to download the form before your trip and have it filled out upon arrival. You can find the form ready for download on the following page of the Cologne City website:

Please note this procedure applies to all guests, regardless of whether they stay in a single room or double room. Should the employer statement not include, for example, the accompanying wife of the guest, the fee is thereby levied in proportion!

Cologne christmas markets 2014 ✩

Bildnachweis: Weihnachtsmarkt Kölner AltstadtCologne Christmas markets open their gates again at November 24th, 2014.

The unique atmosphere of the differently designed markets is attracting many visitors from home and abroad every year. We made a list of the biggest markets, everyone is worth visiting:

Bild: Weihnachtsmarkt am Kölner DomChristmas market at the Cologne Cathedral

“Germany’s most popular Christmas market, set against the historic backdrop of Cologne’s cathedral, enchants its visitors under the illumination of the starlit canopy. Around 150 stallholders present sophisticated and upmarket handicrafts, selected gifts and culinary delicacies, and in doing so create a unique atmosphere on Roncalliplatz. Known as the “market of the hearts”, the Christmas market offers a comprehensive stage programme free of charge, with over 100 events reflective of the Christmas season. Smaller visitors delight at the diverse children’s programme in the “observatory”, and enjoy a ride on the children’s carousel.”

Bildnachweis: Weihnachtsmarkt Kölner AltstadtCologne Old Town “Home of the elves”

“Every year, hundreds of “Heinzelmännchen” or elves enchant the old town of Cologne with their Christmas market. Traditional handicraft stalls, lovingly decorated huts and atmospheric narrow lanes lend the “Home of the Heinzel” its particular charm. Central to the fairy-tale atmosphere is a spectacular ice rink. “Heinzels Wintermärchen” (Heinzels winter tale) delights young and old alike – with a vast ice surface, sweeping routes around the entire square, alleys for curling, a bridge across the ice and much more besides. Ice-skating is a true experience here. The radiant centrepiece is the spec tacularly illuminated statue, round which the ice-skaters glide in elegant loops.”

Market of Angels – Christmas at Neumarkt

“Magical, stunning and refreshingly different…

A sea of glittering stars and the loving gaze of the Christmas angel on a horseback await visitors to Neumarkt. Centrally situated between the most popular shopping streets and the sights of the cathedral city, and with a direct link with the public transport network, you are welcomed by the market of the angels. Delight at the tastefully designed houses with their decorated gables of varying heights and a stunningly lit evening sky. It is a sight you really must see!”

Village of St. Nicholas at Rudolfplatz

“”St. Nicholas’ village” presents itself for the first time, at the heart of Cologne on Rudolfplatz. Situated in front of the historic Hahnentorburg gate, the magical Christmas world offers an entirely new and unique world of experiences. St. Nicholas and Santa Claus are omnipresent. The “house of St. Nicholas”, the huge advent calendar”, the “village chapel”, the “children’s workshop” and the stage programme whisk visitors away into an atmospheric world of Christmas magic. Radiant illuminations frame the rustic stalls. A meeting point for strolling, discovering, enjoying and feasting in homely cosiness. A place where traditional and modern meet, a rather different Christmas market.”

Cologne Harbour Christmas market at the Chocolate Museum

“Christmas tip: The large maritime “Christmas market on the water” is a modern and stylish event against a picturesque backdrop directly on the Rhine, with snowy white pagoda tents reminiscent of ships’ sails. An outstanding vintner’s mulled wine is served on board the large timber sailing vessel, whilst mulled beer and fire punch are available from the lighthouse. The culinary choices on offer here are impressively diverse and high quality. This pleasant Christmas experience with harbour flair, exceptional gift ideas, handicrafts and a colourful programme comes highly recommended.”

Christmas market at the Stadtgarten

Treat yourself to a special time. This is the motto of our Christmas market which is being held in the City Garden (Stadtgarten) for the ninth time where it offers visitors a festive romantic village idyll which is quite unique.”

christmas avenueChristmas Avenue

“Cologne’s somewhat different Christmas market has developed into a classic within the space of just two years. The Christmas season is buoyantly rung in between Schaafenstraße and Rudolfplatz. Christmas Avenue presents a different stage programme every day. Highlights from the Helene Fischer-Covershow to typical Cologne bands entertain visitors daily from 7.00 pm. High-quality products and exquisite culinary highlights await the guests. All are welcome to enjoy the many delicacies and the welcoming atmosphere of the Avenue.”

Bildnachweis: Quelle aller Bilder der Weihnachtsmärkte, bei denen nichts anderes vermerkt ist: Koelntourismus

Kölner Weihnachtsmärkte

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Kölner Weihnachtsmärkte: 50.939771, 6.958122

Quelle aller Zitate: Koelntourismus

Bildnachweis: Weihnachtsmarkt Kölner Altstadt

Bildnachweis: Weihnachtsmarkt Kölner Altstadt