The Stay and Spend Scheme must be expanded to include tourism businesses, as well as accommodation and food-service providers, according to a Galway senator.
The Stay and Scheme provides a tax refund of up to €125 to people who spend up to €625 in restaurants, cafés, pubs, hotels, B&Bs, and other tourism accommodation between October 1 2020 and April 30 2021. More than 30 Galway businesses have so far registered with Revenue to participate in the Scheme.
Expansion of scheme 'vital given the impact of Covid-19'
Fine Gael senator Sean Kyne said that while the scheme "will provide much-needed support" for tourism and hospitality businesses, and was "vital given the impact of Covid-19 on the tourism sector", there was a need to expand the scheme further.
'Targeted and impactful supports are needed to ensure the viability of these businesses'
He pointed out that Tourism is the State's largest industry, accounts for over a quarter of a million jobs nationally, and that it is also a varied industry, including local businesses engaged in adventure/activity tourism, cultural and heritage tourism, and guided and escorted tours.
Sen Kyne has written to the Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe, highlighting this and urging the expansion of the scheme to include such businesses. "Targeted and impactful supports are needed to ensure the viability of these businesses," he said, "and the overall tourism and hospitality sectors.”