Home > Travel > Tourist fees charged in Niagara Falls are voluntary, but they won’t tell you

Tourist fees charged in Niagara Falls are voluntary, but they won’t tell you

The much improved view on our second night.

The much improved view on our second night.

We spent a few days in Niagara Falls (Canadian side) last week and had a lot of fun. There was, however, this strange “tax” that we kept seeing on many of our bills. Not being one to just shrug and pay it, I decided to look it up. The first hit I got from Google was this 2012 CBC article about tourism fees being collected with little oversight. The part that intrigued me most, though, was the bit that noted it was a voluntary fee.

Wait. It’s voluntary?

No one bothered to mention that. And that’s why I grew annoyed. Who doesn’t dislike hidden fees? Or cash grabs? Of course it could be argued parts of Niagara Falls are little more than cash grabs (Clifton Hill anyone?) but those are known tourist traps and you choose to either partake or not. Did we over pay for indoor glow-in-the-dark mini putt? Yes. Did we know that beforehand? Yes. But we chose to go ahead and do it. It’s this extra fee masquerading as a mandatory tax that’s unacceptable. An additional 3-3.8 per cent might not seem like much, but it does add up. Plus it’s the principle. This is the whole opt in vs. opt out, but without letting the consumer know they can opt out in the first place.

I wondered if perhaps things had changed since that article was published, but looking around online it seemed not to be the case. So I tested this when we arrived back at the hotel. I spoke with someone at the front desk about the fee and asked to have it removed. They said they would remove it for that night. I told them I wanted it removed for my entire stay. I was informed I’d have to get a manager to do that in the morning (we hopped around rooms due to an issue with the view of the falls on the first night, so they were considered separate bookings although it was all one booking).

Before speaking with the assistant general manager the next morning, I decided to run another test. I went to a chain coffee shop that had earlier charged me a 3.8 per cent TIFF and, after giving them my order, promptly told them I didn’t want to pay the tourism fee. No problem, the barista said, and with the punch of a few buttons on the till that extra fee was removed from my total. It was that easy! I really wish I had known it was voluntary the first day we were there.

Back at the hotel the assistant GM reversed the TIFF charge and the HST charged on that TIFF charge (yes, they charged tax on it). I asked her about the fee, which she informed me stands for Tourism Infrastructure Funding Fee, but she insisted it was really a resort fee, gave me some story about the website being updated 2 months ago, and then played the “sympathize with the consumer” card and noted she had to pay a similar fee in the Bahamas. We chatted some more but nothing really seemed to add up and I didn’t really get a clear answer as to why they are charging a voluntary fee without being up front about it being a voluntary fee, so I was given the name and number to the GM.

The "tourism infrastructure funding fee" added to one night at the hotel - we had it reversed because it's voluntary, but they don't tell you that.

The “tourism infrastructure funding fee” added to one night at the hotel – we had it reversed because it’s voluntary, but they don’t tell you that.

I called the GM when I returned home. Frankly, I didn’t get much of an answer from her either. The gist of the conversation was this: It’s a resort fee, it’s to pay for free WiFi (then it’s not free, is it?), it’s meant to pay for other amenities (there’s a $20/day fee for parking on top of all this), the name comes from what other hotels in the area use, they’ll probably change the name (a rose by any other name is still a rose), and yes it’s voluntary and they will take it off if asked to do so. She asked how we booked the room, noting they are up front on their website and if you call. I noted we used the hotel’s website and there was absolutely nothing on it regarding this TIFF. She told me she’d follow up with corporate, but assured me that had we called the hotel they would have told me all about the fee over the phone.

So if I call directly they’ll be more forthright? Well that’s something that is easy to test. About an hour or so after talking with the GM, I called the hotel directly to book a room. They gave me the room rate, and when I asked, they gave me the total. I asked if that included all taxes AND fees. I was put on hold. After a few minutes I was informed there’s a $20 charge plus tax for parking each day. So I repeated the information I was given and asked if the taxes were the 13 per cent HST. Yes I was told, then a pause, and then she mentioned there is also a 3 per cent TIFF. I asked what that is. “Just a tax,” she said. I asked about this tax and she told me it was mandatory.

So much for being up front when you call directly. And is it a tax, a tourism fee or a resort fee? They don’t even seem to be sure what they’re charging us. I had to prompt the person on the phone over and over to get the information regarding the fee. Plus I was told it was mandatory, which, according to the GM, it is not.

The point is we don’t have to pay these fees as they are voluntary, but no one tells us that, which really puts a sour note on an otherwise fun vacation spot. I would recommend Niagara Falls as a place to go if you’re looking for a bit of fun or just want to get away for a few days. But it’s worth asking each and every time that the tourism fee or destination fee be removed from the bill, otherwise the prices are inflated that much more. That we even have to ask each time is ridiculous, but such is how the system is currently set up there.

I’ll also point out that not all businesses are charging this fee. I collected some of our receipts and took a look and found that there are still some honest folks around.  Unfortunately, those who charged some sort of destination or tourism fee outnumbered those that did not. All the restaurants we went to charged the fee. So if you’re visiting Niagara Falls, be aware this fee is voluntary and you can get it removed, but you have to ask.

Related to this, the Globe & Mail had a piece on surprise hotel fees.

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  1. Brai
    March 26, 2014 at 7:51 am

    Hi there,
    I know this article was last year but, I stayed in Niagara Falls in Jan and Feb 2014. I never really bothered to check my bill until recently and wondering about some “terms” they have I searched and saw this and the CBC article.

    Here was my bill…

    Accommodation 157.00
    Resort Fee 9.95
    PF 5.97
    HST Tax 21.19
    Resort Fee – HST 1.29
    Self Parking 20.00
    HST Tax 2.70
    PF 0.76
    Credit Card -218.86

    I emailed them about it, this is what I got…

    “The city of Niagara Falls has a Promotional Fee of 4.29%”

    “The Resort Fee(daily) $9.95 and includes:

    Free internet access with endless devices
    Free unlimited long distance calls from your room to anywhere in USA or Canada
    Free unlimited local calls
    2 bottles of complimentary water per day
    Complimentary in-room Starbucks coffee and Tazo teas
    Complimentary Globe and Mail daily
    Free unlimited access to Sheraton Fitness Centre by Core Performance
    Free printing of Boarding passes

    2 WEGO Niagara City-wide transportation passes

    Unfortunately these fees can’t be remove.”

    It looks like they changed the name to PF (Promotional Fee) they put PF to confused people and the Resort Fee is ridiculous!

    • April 2, 2014 at 8:53 pm

      If there’s a fee, then the internet, local calls, printing, Globe & Mail etc. are not “free” and those bottles of water are not “complimentary” either. And I see they charged tax on that fee too. Sorry to hear they wouldn’t reverse those charges.

    • May 4, 2014 at 9:43 pm

      Wow!! So you’re paying for the “free” stuff? So what if you don’t drink the “complementary” water or coffee? Or you don’t use the “free” wifi? Should you not get a reimbursement then?

    • Erin
      May 8, 2014 at 8:42 am

      Different places called if different names. It was pf where I worked, but CBC or TIFF other places. And we were told as staff at our facility it was to improve Niagara Falls. Not pay for their fees on crap everywhere should include.

      • July 23, 2015 at 11:38 pm

        Agree. If tourists want to use our roads, cause havoc and a mess… yeah someone has to pay for it and it’s not coming from residents who live nesrby and barely visit. Niagara Falls drivers license or no, you’re not exempt. Your a tourist.

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:30 am

      Okay, here’s the deal:

      Destination Marketing Fees are Government Approved fees that hotels (not restaurants) can apply to their rooms/resorts in order to generate additional revenues.

      http://www.mtc.gov.on.ca/en/invest/destination_marketing.shtml

      If the businesses turn all this money over to a non-profit destination marketing organization for marketing activities promoting their city or region as a whole, then they are TAX EXEMPT. BUT, the businesses do NOT have to do this. They can keep the money for themselves, provided they pay HST on them. They go from being actual marketing fees to greedy cash grabs.

      Employees are poorly informed as to the nature of the fee, so they give bad answers. The name of the fee changes from business to business, because too many people got upset at the “DMF” when it first came out. But now? Not enough people are complaining, or noticing, so the fee stays.

      It’s horribly misleading and a definite black eye on the tourist industry in town.

  2. Ryan
    May 3, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    The local restaurants in this area also offer a “local resident”discount if you prove you live in the Niagara region. Most places, if you show proof of residency, you get 25%off your bill. So process are inflated 25%higher before all these taxes. Certain places will not discount the prices like rainforest cafe and most of the falls avenue resort, but almost all others will.

    • May 7, 2014 at 10:50 am

      25%?! No no, more like 5 or 10%. I have lived and worked there.

      • Sarah
        July 20, 2014 at 9:29 pm

        I work at a restaurant in the heart of Niagara Falls. We offer 25% off to locals.

      • Sarah
        July 20, 2014 at 9:30 pm

        We will also remove the tax (DMF – Destination Marketing Fee)..

    • Erin
      May 8, 2014 at 8:44 am

      You know it! Rainforest indeed will not remove their tax unless you’re local.

    • Abbie
      May 8, 2014 at 9:21 pm

      If restaurants were to give a 25% ” local resident ” discount, they would lose profits. I eat out in N.F. quite often & have always had the 3 to 3.8% tax removed with no problem at all. You can find some of the same charges in Toronto. Big tourism cities. This isn’t something new…. We’ve known about this for about 8 years or more. Stop & think about 25% , that’s really wrong to think they could operate & give that amount of a discount.

      • July 23, 2015 at 11:41 pm

        You obviously aren’t aware at how much money tourists bring to cities. Your little dinners out don’t even make a dent. The hard rock cafe makes tens of thousands a day. One restarunt. 25% off of a handful of people, won’t hurt their profit LOL

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:30 am

      Some restaurants do. The ones that do generally have inflated prices. What you then end up paying is Normal Human Pricing instead of Gouge the Tourist Pricing.

  3. Billy bob
    May 3, 2014 at 8:14 pm

    Yes but many of these taxes covers stuff ie lights on the falls, fireworks etc. as residents of Niagara Falls we pay much higher taxes and our insurance is even higher because of tourists- you can’t seriously expect locals to pay the taxes on stuf such as fireworks that don’t affect us or do anything for us. Our roads aren’t even fixed.

    • Louise
      May 6, 2014 at 12:14 pm

      All those attractions and amenities help to bring tourists to Niagara Falls, where they spend money, and lots of it given the inflated prices of everything in the Falls. Presumably, the tourism industry is a major employer there, as well as the hotels etc paying taxes to the region. So yeah, the residents of Niagara Falls, who benefit from the influx of tourists, should foot the bill.

      • Sarah
        May 7, 2014 at 8:18 pm

        Louise,

        You must not have ever been employed in Niagara Falls especially the tourism area. Most people make minimum wage and live below the poverty line. Serving staff get poor tips as tourists are already paying an arm and a leg and cheap out on the hard working employees after filling the pockets of the owners. As well, the employment is mostly seasonal so most get laid of for a majority of the year. All the tourists money goes into the pockets of two families that own all of Clifton hill and some surrounding parts, definitely not to the residents of niagara. Sure prices are inflated and there are extra fees, did you also know that some restaurants make it mandatory for 18% gratuity for tables of 6 or more (this is usually written on the menu so it’s technically not a hidden fee). I agree that these prices are outrageous but I am offended that you think residents of niagara benefit from living in a tourism town and therefore should foot the bill. It’s mostly annoying to live in a tourist town, everyone’s lost, they ask stupid questions like “when do they turn the rainbow on over the falls?” And tourism has brought a lot of drugs, crime and sex industry with it. So why don’t you please stop visiting niagara; you won’t have to pay the fees therefore you won’t bitch about it and you’ll do us all a favour by helping us drive down tourism. Then maybe niagara will try to become an actual town not dependent on tourists. Sorry if I offended anyone but don’t comment on a town/industry you clearly know nothing about.

      • David
        May 11, 2015 at 7:44 am

        Sarah, if you are that displeased with living conditions in Niagara Falls I am sure you could move without anyone stopping you.

    • Larry
      May 7, 2014 at 10:16 am

      Billy, Everyone pays taxes based on where you live. You have elected officials that have determined that (fireworks) and other stuff is money well spent as it brings millions of dollars to your community. If you aren’t happy with their decisions the you can lobby to not get them not re-elected, or you could run yourself, or you can move. Plus your area property taxes are average when you look at all of Ontario.

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:32 am

      No they don’t. The Fireworks are paid for by the Niagara Parks and its sponsors. And the Niagara Parks, as you might remember, is the only self-sustaining portion of the government, funding itself fully and completely by the tourism-based attractions that it runs.

    • xDancer
      March 20, 2016 at 2:24 pm

      Your roads are TERRIBLE. WORSE than Hamilton or Cambridge.

  4. Sandra Faucher
    May 3, 2014 at 8:43 pm

    This tax is NOT optional. It’s called a DPF Tax that hotels and tourist attractions charge. Always. It has NOTHING to do with the hotel, or it’s ammenities. This tax goes straight to the city of Niagara Falls and they use it towards the festival of lights, the fireworks, lighting up the falls and all the flower beds. Most hotels charge it and clearly have no idea what it’s for so they make up those answers above on the spot so they don’t look so stupid. But this is not an optional tax. If hotels removed the tax for guests, the hotel itself has to pay for it.

    • Erin
      May 8, 2014 at 8:49 am

      I was told as an employee and found out as a resident that they actually don’t have to pay the city. It’s just recommended. That being said, if it was mandatory then it would be a set few and more explainable. But the % varies from place to place. Also, the fireworks, Festival of Lights and gardens are part of the niagara parks, so we wouldn’t be supporting the city but a totally seperate entity which already has their own line of “tourist traps”.

    • Jason
      May 13, 2014 at 9:13 am

      A hotel tax is different than the tourist fee @Sandra. Get your facts straight. There has been enough info on this- I”m surprised you are clueless to that.

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:34 am

      The FEE is completely optional, Sandra. It has nothing to do with anything you mentioned — those are all run by the Niagara Parks and paid for by the Parks and its sponsors. Hotels do not have to turn over any money, since there isn’t a governing body that’s handling the money. It just goes down as revenue for the business charging it.

  5. May 4, 2014 at 10:58 am

    @brai

    The PF and the TIFF is a different tax. A PF is charged by the hotel and they collect that money so they can participate and hold city/tourist events. The TIFF is a tourist fee tax and is optional (if you ask them to remove it they will). They will not remove the PF.

    I worked in the sales office at a Niagara hotel, and that is the way the difference was explained to me.

  6. Anne-Marie
    May 4, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Before you write an article please make sure that all your facts are straight. Your statements are libel. I myself live in Niagara Falls and believe the tax is ridiculous. But not all businesses charge it you so don’t defame the ones that don’t. Clifton Hill has numerous businesses owned by different people. HOCO, who owns the glow-in-the-dark mini golf that you talk about, does not charge that tax.

    • Rie
      May 6, 2014 at 6:43 am

      Before commenting on an article, please make sure that all your facts are straight. The author didn’t say that every business charged the tax. In fact it is said that not all places charge this. The author also didn’t say that the mini putt charged the TIFF, just that the mini putt was over priced. The article is just advising people that visit the area that if a business charges the TIFF, you may ask to have it removed. Simple as that.

      • Sharon
        May 8, 2015 at 12:12 pm

        I live here in the Falls. Just back from Clifton Hill with our grandchildren. Buying the package of 4 attractions, including the glow-in-the-dark mini putt. We questioned the extra tax and why HST was on top of this “extra tourist tax” as was told to us. We showed them that we live here and that did not matter. We were told different stories from the same adult (45ish) on what the “tax” was. It was not removed. The children were excited and wanted to go, go, go. If it was just us we would have told them to shove it and walked away. There was no advertising for this amount and no accurate information on it. I have asked at many restaurants in this city about the resident discount and have never been given one. We eat out every Friday night. My company works all over this city and have never seen a poster to explain this tax to the tourist. Niagara Falls is a rip off to tourist in many ways. We also owned a camping resort up north and we never charged any fees that were not totally understood from the customer point of view.

    • Angela
      May 7, 2014 at 11:45 am

      Read the article carefully. It does say that most businesses didn’t do this.

  7. May 4, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    I live in Niagara Falls Canada and I think it is nuts they add this fee and yet the hotels and casino will not pay their property taxes to the city. Tourists are this city’s bread and butter (we no longer have any industry and have high unemployment) so the thought that these rich hoteliers are ripping off tourists just makes me sick. As a resident of this beautiful city I apologize.

  8. adam
    May 4, 2014 at 3:20 pm

    It’s not a tax. It’s not inputted by the government and it’s not used towards the tourism amenities. It goes into the pockets of the owners of the establishments as they know the general populace won’t ask about it and they can get away with it.

    • Erin
      May 8, 2014 at 8:51 am

      Adam you’re nothing but correct there. They are trying to pull wool over our eyes!

  9. Lyne
    May 4, 2014 at 4:11 pm

    Thank you for this information. Very good to know!

  10. Stewy
    May 4, 2014 at 11:58 pm

    It cost 10,000 a night for fireworks alone in Niagara Falls. If you think the locals want to pay for that…. Well your out of your mind. That is a tourist service that those tourist taxes pay for… Enjoy or don’t…. It’s your call, cause us locals don’t care.

    • David Dulmage
      May 6, 2014 at 8:52 am

      Tourists bring millions of dollars to your city? If it wasn’t for tourist dollars, Niagara Falls would be broke.

      • Mary
        November 16, 2014 at 1:43 pm

        The Niagara Parks Commission pays for the fireworks. This fee has nothing to do with the city, it is to pay for advertising and promotions for the businesses that are charging it. In other words, they charge you money for their advertising budget. So how do you like that?

  11. LH
    May 5, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    Interesting that the fee was at least reversible in Canada for a while. I travel regularly to the US and almost every hotel I stay at has a “resort fee” of anywhere from $12 to $20 per day and often these are the same places that are charging $10 and up per day for WiFi (which they often do not mention in their ads!)

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:37 am

      It’s reversible because its duplicitous, so they have to be careful about sticking to their guns. Also, Niagara Falls hotelliers want to suck your money out of you, so they’re not willing to let you walk to another hotel.

  12. May 5, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    Is this only for Niagara Falls, or all of Ontario? We stayed in Ottawa two weeks ago. I’ll take a look at our receipts. And I thought Canada was so cool.

  13. Cheryl
    May 5, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    My understanding is that the casino revenue stays in Niagara Falls only. There are people from all over Ontario Canada going to the casino and I dont understand why Niagara Falls cant just take a portion and divide some up amongst other Cities in Ontario. Then Niagara Falls cries when they hear they want a casino in Toronto. Sure they would because half the people that go to the Niagara Falls casino are from Toronto, Mississauga, Stoney Creek etc. they know they will lose half their revenue and Toronto wont have to share with them. There is a lot of money out there that those casinos bring in and a Tourist Fee is not necessary anywhere even voluntarily TIME TO SPEAK UP FOLKS.

    • Melissa
      May 6, 2014 at 7:49 am

      The revenue from the casino does go to all of Ontario. It is regulated by the OLG. The only revenue that Niagara Falls gets from the casino is property tax.

  14. Nicole
    May 5, 2014 at 5:44 pm

    I am a resident here,I think it is a shame about the 3% tax,as it is not a regulated tax!!! Someone is collecting it,and how is it Governed??? They can skim all they want,as it’s not mandatory. If I go somewhere that charges that tax,they will take it off if I show I.D that I live in Niagara Falls. So,to anyone coming here,REFUSE TO PAY IT!!!! The tourist sector is already overcharging you as it is.

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:40 am

      Nicole, I’m in absolute agreement. It isn’t regulated because the business that charges it, keeps it. All they have to do is make sure they pay the government HST on the total amount they collect. It is a complete and utter cash grab.

  15. Warren Timmings
    May 5, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    This looks like another money grab ripoff in Niagara Falls what a joke.

  16. A. Bauz
    May 5, 2014 at 11:10 pm

    This is, in one word, embarrassing. I’m ashamed to state that I was born and raised in this beautiful city. Tourist “fees”? Come on. As if this city needs MORE money. The ratio of taxes gained vs population to support is ridiculously incredible. Come on Niagara, cut the bullshit.

  17. May 6, 2014 at 8:08 am

    Reblogged this on Trini Sultress and commented:
    Wow!! Something I wasn’t event aware of. I’m planning a trip out to this area in the summer. Let’s see what’s going on then and if you can actually get that fee waived. But I keep hearing it being called all different acronyms. So what is it I’m looking for?

    • Rie
      May 6, 2014 at 8:14 am

      TIFF is what you’re looking for. Or any kind of tourism tax. Good luck and enjoy the trip!

      • May 7, 2014 at 1:14 pm

        Thanks!! 😀 It’s supposed to be a romantic getaway. So anywhere we can save money and put it towards doing other things in the area would be great. Don’t they realize if things aren’t overpriced then the tourist are more inclined to do more and thus spend money….

      • Rie
        May 7, 2014 at 7:29 pm

        Ooh..it can be a very romantic place! Had my honeymoon there 9 years ago! And have been back for many anniversaries. I agree with you!
        But at least now you can tell them to take off the TIFF. I hope you have a great time! ! ! Ripleys museum is a fav of mine! But all the wax museums are pretty neat too! If you’re driving, you should go into the city to eat…anything outside of the tourist district is significantly cheaper restaurant-wise!

  18. Laura
    May 6, 2014 at 8:25 am

    Funny how Canadians allow such a tax to be voluntary and removable if requested. Goes to show tourists should ALWAYS know the rules/regs of where they are going. What’s the difference between paying this tax in Niagara Falls vs 1) toll charges on American roads for tourists 2) taxes to be paid to leave after vacationing in Cuba, Dominican etc — this is $25 and like the toll charges 100% mandatory. There is no oh hey, of you do your homework on our country you can not pay it b/c of a loophole. Where are your articles on those taxes/fees? And they aren’t even hidden. You pass a toll, take a ticket, pay the next stop. You go on vacation, the tour guide will tell you to put your “exit fee” aside in your hotel safe so you do not spend it. I enjoy how you chose to pick on the Canadians who will remove the tourism tax if you ask nicely. Try to ask not paying that tax in Cuba…I will enjoy reading your article on the Cuban judicial system after that.

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:44 am

      It’s not Canadians. It’s greedy Niagara Business Owners.

      See, they got in trouble a few years back for calling it a DMF/DPF.

      http://www.stcatharinesstandard.ca/2008/12/13/three-per-cent-tourist-tax-legitimate

      But because they weren’t turning the money over to a third-party, non-profit marketing department, they were misleading people.

      Read that article. Our own former mayor, Wayne Thomson, lies about it.

      So they remove the fee because it’s a sneaky, underhanded cash grab, and they know it.

  19. JC
    May 6, 2014 at 9:55 am

    “No Taxation Without Representation” is the law in Canada. The resort of Tremblant charges an additional crazy high resort tax – but they petitioned the Quebec Government at the time and had it voted on, which passed. Thankfully this tax goes back into providing people free outdoor concerts & events all year round. Basically though, if a tax has not been passed in public by the Government, it is an illegal tax and you do not have to pay it.

  20. May 6, 2014 at 10:39 am

    Reblogged this on Real Women Drive Stick and commented:
    Thank you for sharing! This is one of our favourite places in Ontario. We’ve never been told the tax is voluntary either. Good news for my upcoming visit!

  21. Carole
    May 6, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    The first time we ever saw this extra tax on a restaurant bill, the waitress said it was a “Beautify Niagara” tax and we HAD to pay it. We questioned someone else about it and they said any restaurant attached to a hotel charged this tax. It seems to be true because any other restaurant we’ve gone to that isn’t attached to a hotel, doesn’t charge this tax…not that we’ve noticed anyway!

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:46 am

      Annnnnd that’s illegal. Only hotels can charge the fee. And even then, they have to be upfront about it. They can’t say it’s a tax, and they can’t say it does anything for the city. It has to be clearly stated that the business uses the money. They can then say that the business isusing the money on marketing projects, but ascribing the revenue to the general good is an outright lie.

      Some restaurants don’t charge it because the owners have a conscience.

  22. service provider
    May 6, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    You all sound very informed and a bit upset by this tax whether law abiding or not. It makes people sound cheap to visit a place that works so hard to bring you such a great attraction like the city of Niagara Falls – just enjoy it and help their industry thrive and continue to provide a great service to those who visit! (or opt out of the voluntary tax, now that it is known).

    • Rose
      May 7, 2014 at 3:16 pm

      So are you saying that people should just suck it up and pay that tax?? Because as far as i am concerned the hotel rates are already crazy just because of the summer months. I mean you can go in the winter and pay awhole lot less and then in the summer you pay an arm, leg and kidney. But yet the service at the front desk or the maid service do not change no matter what month you stay in. So it is hard for them to even justify to me the reason for the high increase in room rates and now add on this tourist tax on to everything else I pay there? Someone needs their head checked to think that is acceptable. I go there every year at least twice a year and have since I can remember as a kid and now my kids are adults and love that place just as much. The area is gorgeous but the rates are ridiculous. Soon you will see more and more people doing less out there because of the taxes.

    • Will
      May 7, 2014 at 9:04 pm

      I can’t believe you took the time to write that. Essentially you told me if I had a good time, its okay that I got the wool pulled over my eyes with a sneaky surcharge. Get a life.

  23. Gaz
    May 6, 2014 at 5:14 pm

    But without the tax its still extremely expensive to do anything in the Falls and unfortunately ripping off the people that are bringing in the money to the place is not the best thing to do they are already paying in mega excess of what they should for the same thing elsewhere, im half Canadian and Mum lives in St Catherines Its A Bloody Disgrace they dont ask you first about the tax something voluntary needs to be asked to the person paying not put onto a bill with out informing the person first – so dont give me crap about its for this and that its to rip off people who already pay way too much to see a natural beauty and to do things in the area, without tourists Niagara Falls Would be Run Down & Derelict

  24. May 6, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    I guess if you like being stolen from this is acceptable. Not only are stealing from Canadians but also our visitors. Fine.. Screw everyone equally, seems to be a government standard in most taxes. But answer this for me… Who collects it? A tax would be paid to the Municipality, Province or Country (Feds).. Where does this go? Under PF or TIFF, it has to go somewhere or it is an extra fee that the business is charging that they are lying about. I don’t mind paying for someone’s hard work, but don’t LIE about it. As far as I am concerned, Rev Canada should be looking into this. Taxes need to be collected.

  25. May 6, 2014 at 6:57 pm

    Good to know–will vacation right here in the good ole USA

  26. May 6, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    We are taxed enough never mind paying for a Fee (TIFF) that is voluntary , you know if i was told up front ,i most likely would say if it goes towards the city dont worry about, just dont like being lied too..

    • Jason
      May 7, 2014 at 7:50 am

      typical of poor peasants to complain about the fee. If you don’t have the money or wealth to be travelling, you shouldn’t be going in the first place.

  27. Karen
    May 6, 2014 at 10:19 pm

    this post is ridiculous. stop being such a frugal whiner.

  28. the Lobotomy Kid
    May 7, 2014 at 7:02 am

    Locals don’t even see tourists as actual human beings. We look at you as shells. You are sweaty smiling walking talking piggy banks, and when you come to The Falls, you get wacked in the head with a hammer and shattered and we snatch up all yr greasy coins. You pigs. Tourists are chumps. We are raised in this tradition.

    • northy
      February 26, 2016 at 8:23 am

      lol, i will give ya wave in may when i come and visit 🙂

  29. my name
    May 7, 2014 at 7:33 am

    I waitressed at the Fallsview Resort, and ran into questions about this tax from several guests. Different managers called it different things, and most of the staff had no idea what it was for. It’s not a provincial tax or government related in any way, I actually think it goes directly to the owners of the establshments.

  30. May 7, 2014 at 7:56 am

    Canyon Creek in the Casino Complex does not charge this fee! My daughter works there and they think it is bad business to do that . . .

  31. May 7, 2014 at 8:25 am

    The employees at the resorts and facilities in NF work for mostly minimum wage and are just grateful to have a job even when they are mostly seasonal, they don’t have a clue what the fees are for, who imposes it and what it covers. They are instructed to charge it and that’s all they know, to keep the peace and their jobs they usually make up some story based on locker room chit chat. Only the .01% that makes the rules (own all the hotels and facilities) know for sure what that money is for and it clearly shows how much they will take advantage of the general population given a chance and with no supervision. This is from experience as I worked at one of the resorts for a couple of years.

  32. May 7, 2014 at 9:37 am

    This is boarder line fraud ! If it is voluntary, they they should never have entered it into the auto tax bracket in the computer system, its should be asked before completion of the transaction if they want to participate, just like McDonald’s asks, ” Do you want fries with that” on every order where no fires were placed in the order. Doesn’t take a brain surgeon to come up with this idea.

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:50 am

      No, it’s not fraud. It’s just underhanded, duplicitous behaviour designed to easily garner more revenue.

  33. Dan Thomsen
    May 7, 2014 at 11:32 am

    I just cancelled a planned $2000 weekend in Niagara Falls. The fee is now called a PF (promotional fee). It’s almost 4.29%, it’s subject to real tax and is mandatory, adding insult to injury. Niagara Falls Ontario: your promotional fee is not working….. you just lost my business (possibly forever) take note!

    • Carolyn
      May 8, 2014 at 9:06 am

      Hi Dan,
      I live in the Niagara region. Are you from the Toronto area? I’ve stayed in hotels there and they also charge the destination tax. They wouldn’t take it off the bill even when I said it was not mandatory to pay it. Unfortunately, it seems to be not just an unfair practice in Niagara Falls. Hope you change your mind about visiting, despite what others have said we really enjoy taking care of visitors and look forward to your return each season! PS Please bring the warm weather with you though! 🙂

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:49 am

      Here’s the pertinent part from this link: http://www.mtc.gov.on.ca/en/invest/destination_marketing.shtml

      Visitor Experience Considerations:

      To encourage transparency and coherence in terms of the visitor experience across Ontario, RTOs and tourism destinations are encouraged to align their DMP programs with the following criteria:

      Participants, at their discretion, may decide how the marketing program will be funded (e.g., contribution of a predetermined amount or percentage of historical revenue).
      If a marketing fee is charged separately to the guest:

      The fee will be forwarded by the vendor to a non-profit organization to be used for the purpose of tourism promotion and development in Ontario and/or the destination in which the accommodation is located.

      Staff will be trained to ensure that they understand and can explain the fee, in particular that the fee is not a government tax or levy.

      All price advertising will include clear notice of the fee prior to booking so that visitors are not surprised when presented with their bill.

      The fee is shown as a separate item on the purchaser’s invoice or receipt.

      ****

      But since they don’t DO all that…

  34. Jebus
    May 7, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    There’s a reason why Buffalo looks like Buffalo…

  35. Shannon
    May 8, 2014 at 6:52 am

    Was it ever clarified who keeps the proceeds of the ‘tax’? Is it the city? The tourism board/committee? Or the business itself? Also, how is allocation monitored? It all seems very suspect.

    • May 10, 2014 at 8:14 am

      No, it’s not clear, or at least it wasn’t. That is one of the sticking points. They weren’t remitting the fee to a non-profit agency that is tasked with promoting tourism, and the funds seemed to be untraceable. It’s interesting this post gained such attention almost a year later, although I suppose we’re getting into high tourism season again. I think I’ll look into the issue again and post an update.

    • Dan in Niagara
      June 15, 2015 at 12:51 am

      The business keeps the money. They have the option to turn the money over “to a non-profit organization to be used for the purpose of tourism promotion and development in Ontario and/or the destination in which the accommodation is located.”

      But that doesn’t happen, so they just charge HST on it, line their pockets and call it a day.

  36. May 8, 2014 at 8:14 am

    Thank you so much for this!!! My family and I are going on vacation in July, two nights in Toronto and Two in Niagara Falls. I’m so happy to have learned about this! Will definitely be asking if I’m being charged this each time we spend money there.Going to write down each name used for this fee, destination, resort, tourism tiff, promotional fee…It will take a little longer to pay for things, but oh well! I don’t feel like being robbed while on vacation. I thought the parking fee for the hotel was ridiculous…this is just crazy.

  37. Erin
    May 8, 2014 at 8:39 am

    Funny the excuses different staff are told to make. I worked for almost 6 years at a famous chain restaurant on Clifton Hill. When this “tax fee” was implemented I remember the servers being pretty ticked off and concerned, knowing it would directly affect us and our tips, and just plain didn’t make sense. At the time we were told it would only be removed for locals that requested, which was ridiculous. We were told the reason for the Tax, which by the way, was not called TIFF at our restaurant (made up terms at different places), was to support Niagara Falls. That approximately 3% of sales was being requested by the city to help maintain tourism areas. Try explaining that one to families on a budget! I remember a lot of people questioning it, and either saying “oh ok” or immediately requesting it be removed. Our management at the time was not very supportive to say the least, and in the end, the tax may have been removed, but I usually lost my tip due to the customer being so ticked. It’d be nice to know what this fee is really for and how all these buisnesses are getting away with it. I’ve gone down to the tourist areas since, and to be honest forgot about it, trying to put bad memories behind me I suppose. However I also didn’t realize it was affecting that many buisnesses. Id be interested to know which hotel you were at, could be the same owners. Thanks for the article. People deserve to be aware!

  38. Niagara_Resident
    May 8, 2014 at 11:49 am

    I have to say that quite a few years ago, I was eating at an establishment in Fort Erie (Chinese food) and they tried charging us an additional tax. When we questioned it, we were told it was “tax”, we asked to have it removed and the cashier said you have to pay. After some mild arguing and mentioning about it being illegal, it was swiftly removed. It’s pays to question everything, especially in this case. Being a Niagara Falls resident, I feel truly sorry for those that come to visit us, and have to pay for these types of fees, knowing that they are already spending an arm and a leg for most amenities.

  39. May 8, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    Thanks very much for this useful information.This is really annoying and I hope many tourist will refuse to pay this.They pull a similar stunt in Las Vegas where.they charge resort fees in the middle of winter when the whole outside is not even open!

  40. Bud
    May 8, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    The sad part is that people here really think that this goes to the “city” or for people that live in NF YOUR city?! Think again, its more likely going to the pockets of the hotel owners. They will give you BS stuff to make you believe. Do you think those fireworks cost millions? This is highway robbery and prey on people that are willing to pay, this is not about people working as a bartender or waitress. Do you you really think that they get a piece of the so called “PF” tax!? Its not about them not getting “enough” tips.

    For people that is replying or offended about this post, its not about being frugal or cheap its about paying something useful! Again if the so called “PF” goes to the city then that’s but more than likely it doesn’t and of course gullible people would believe this or they have too!

    I am very thankful I have a great job and earn great money, but it doesn’t mean that I will just throw money around. I don’t mind spending money for something worth it or something that goes to a good cause or great service.

  41. Jeff
    May 9, 2014 at 8:23 am

    Why would anyone “stay” in Niagara Falls? Drive in, look at the water, and get out.

  42. Krissy
    May 9, 2014 at 4:59 pm

    @Jebus, if you go outside of the tourist area of Niagara Falls Canada, you can tell not much money is going into the surrounding communities…

  43. May 9, 2014 at 9:38 pm

    I guess the best place to is see the falls is on video, I know it’s not the same as being there,
    but to get greedy on all of these taxes, come on, Someone is filling there pockets and if it
    continues there will be no tourist. Don’t expect me to visit the falls, I work to hard for my
    money to get ripped off like this. I will spread the word…………………

  44. Uncle Ben
    May 10, 2014 at 2:41 am

    All that “tax” money, and if you go 1/4 mile from the Falls and the casinos, downtown Niagara Falls looks like a ghetto. On another note, some (not all) tourists are inclined to whine about minor things real or imaginary in the hopes of snagging a free stay/meal whatever. Thankfully the nice tourists outnumber the sphincter-like ones.

  45. Chris
    May 12, 2014 at 8:08 pm

    Been to the falls many times and have been charged this tax(fee ) a lot. When we questioned the one restaurant they advised it was for the upkeep of the Lundy Lane/Clifton Hills area. Only charged in those areas and if you are eating off this area or staying 2 or more blocks away (this was 5 years ago) that the tax is not charged. Went out Lundy’s Lane and ate near the outlet mall and big surprise no tax. We now choose where to eat and opt not to eat down in the “tourist” area and have found some great local spots. We still do the tourist area we just don’t give them as much business as we would normally.

  46. Ron
    June 9, 2014 at 5:50 pm

    june 9/14
    Just got home from the Falls today,guess thats why I found this site.Nothing has changed!!
    TOURISM IMPROVEMENT FEE $4.52
    ECO FEE {RTD FR ECO FEE} $3.00.
    The HILTON is the one that put this on bill,they just put another $7.52 in their pockets.

  47. Ellie
    July 6, 2014 at 11:56 am

    I just booked a hotel in Niagara Falls as well. I went to book online and was charged tax and then something listed as “other”. When I called the hotel I was lied to and was told they didn’t know what it was, that they would have to look into it. I called back and was lied to again and was told that it was for parking. I called back a third time, after doing some research, and was told that it was a hotel fee and that parking would be on top of that fee. Finally, after three calls to the Americana Hotel I got the truth! I arrive tomorrow morning and will be demanding that 1) they remove the voluntary tax and 2) suggest that their employees are honest to paying customers! Sheesh! Is this even legal?!

  48. Hans
    August 4, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    If you research the TIFF charge, you find out that a) it is not regulated and b) the establishments are not even required to give all the money to the city council.

    In essence this is a pure money grab

  49. Debbie Lamb
    August 14, 2014 at 9:20 am

    Thank you all! We are going in Sept,for our 40th wedding anniversary, staying at the Oakes. I was really excited but now I am a bit leary.

  50. lynn connor
    October 18, 2014 at 7:20 pm

    As a local I was pissed to have this tax on a bill at apple bees asked about it the bar tender said it could not be removed, we try to support the local restaurants even during the winter…. I guess now we will travel to the states and support their economy wake up Niagara falls another money GRAB and they used to give a 25% discount at apple bees for locals now that is 10% with smaller portion sizes left a bad taste to say the least…….

  51. Mary
    November 16, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    it does NOT go towards the fireworks or anything for the city!! The Niagara Parks Commission pays for the fireworks The TIF (PF promotional fee etc) goes into a fund that is used for advertising those establishments. Its crazy that you are paying a fee for them to advertise their business. We refused to pay it when staying at the Marriott and they said it was voluntary if we lived in Ontario. We had it removed upon checkout. They charged it on our parking and the breakfast buffet we had there. We were informed by another business owner that the majority of businesses in Niagara Falls refused to get involved with this scam because it was deemed as being deceptive to patrons. It is not a legal “tax” and has nothing to do with the government.

    • Lx
      March 6, 2015 at 7:34 am

      What do we do when they refuse to remove it?

  52. Andy Ashjder
    January 11, 2015 at 6:04 pm

    Just went there. Saw “TIF”, “PF”, “DMF”, “DPF” on everything.
    Even saw it labeled “Parking Tax” on hotel parking.
    On the hotel bill, it was lumped in with the HST labeled “Taxes”.
    At dinner there was HST and TIF labeled, Waitress wrote “Taxes” on the bill pointing to them both.
    It is NOT A TAX, it is a voluntary fee that can be removed if asked. The only tax is HST, currently 13%. Figure out the true cost, tax and fee by doing the math and multiplying the charge by .13 (13%) for HST and .038 (3.8%) for the BS fee.
    It is unconscionable that they are combining them and/or claiming they are a ‘tax’ in a deceptive attempt to hide it and make you pay more without noticing.
    At the Hilton I even saw a BS “Eco fee” of 3$ per day. I looked it up and asked, it’s a fee to “save the earth and environment”. Basically the Hilton “does stuff that is eco friendly” and to pay for this they “appreciate your support” of 3$ per day. This probably just goes to pay for thier carbon credits.
    These fees are total BS because 1) Unlike taxes no one knows if the money really goes towards what it’s for or just to the bottom line of the hotel 2) Hiding them as some sort of mandatory tax is malicious and deceptive.

  53. James Fuller
    January 30, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    As an Ontario boy I was planning a trip to the Niagra region since its the only place in Ontario I have not been too but after reading this article and comments I will going state side to spend my hard earned money.

    Free wifi is free, breakfast and parking will be included in the price, not a hidden tax/fee and NO tourist tax period. Why should I have to take time out of my vacation to get a BS fee removed?

    Its pretty sad when you have to go state side to get a full week vacation vs. 3 days in your own country. The region is like oil companies, greedy, greedy, greedy. Don’t come wining for my tax dollars for help out when your tourism sector dries up due to your penny pinching.

    If I am ever in the area and eat, my tip will be the TIFF fee period if its on my bill or I’d argue it be taken off and not tip just for sneakiness of it all. I’ll bet that would create a few sad faces in the food industry but nobody would be able to swallow the fact that what goes around, comes around. I’ll bet those in the food industry would even call me a BULLY.

  54. AK
    February 2, 2015 at 2:00 pm

    PF, TIFF, DPF etc. If these are not legal taxes, then they are not legal. Surely there is some way to inform the CRA about these fees, which if not part of a charitable taking and not informed are profit. The question is, are these monies being included as profit or hidden from the CRA. Calls should help this…

  55. Carey Procter
    March 19, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    That sounds a lot like negative billing , which has been deemed illegal . Rogers cable tried this several years ago and were called on it . Might be worth contacting the ombudsman .

    • marian
      March 23, 2015 at 11:43 am

      Not only do the hotels charge the fee but they then add another tax on top of it. And they refuse to take it off. I searched to see where you can complain but could not find anywhere. Leaves us with a choice of paying or not going to specific hotels.

  56. Sally C
    April 22, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    It is a shame for the hotel business in Niagara falls, unfortunately I believe the city will not do anything about this. I do travel a lot and I recently went to NF for a day trip and I have to say I do feel horrible for those who get screamed at the font desk or restaurants workers because they cannot remove the pf. My cousin works in the tourist area and she told me that she would love to remove it but it is against her job or she will get big trouble by her bosses.

    It is a shame that the old beautiful Niagara falls has cause so much problem

  57. Yoon
    April 30, 2015 at 11:50 pm

    Thank god I’ve found this post before I head to Niagara Falls. I was trying to book my hotel during my visit on Canadian side of Niagara Falls and Hotels.com now label them as ‘mandatory’ taxes. It’s sad and somewhat tiresome to ask wherever I go in Niagara falls if they can remove voluntary taxes. Gosh that sounds so weird…’voluntary’ taxes…

  58. Rachel
    May 12, 2015 at 6:18 pm

    I work on the Hoco side of Clifton hill and we do not charge a tourist tax. This includes Kelsey’s, Boston pizza, the sky wheel, Wendy’s etc. Our owners are very good to their employees and by the way have donated quite a bit of land to the city of Niagara Falls for schools and for many other uses.

  59. hobo
    May 12, 2015 at 6:44 pm

    So are there any taxes I should know about when I visit NF?

  60. Fval
    July 6, 2015 at 7:43 pm

    We just visited Niagara Falls on 06/28/2015 and we were fortunate to be told of this tax by a waitress on our first meal. We had to ask everywhere to remove the tourist tax and they did. Some places made a big deal about it like IHOP. A manager had to be called to take it off the bill. I booked the Hilton Falls View Hotel online and at the end of our stay we asked them to remove it and they did. Niagara Falls was a beautiful place and I’m glad we visited.

  61. Guillermo Ramirez
    July 11, 2015 at 5:17 pm

    I went with the family and stayed at Days Inn Click Hill at 5657 Victoria Avenue. I had the same experience with the exception that the staff, supervisor, and GM simply WILL Not take the TIFF out of my bill. Any advice?

    • Dan
      July 12, 2015 at 3:14 pm

      Guillermo,

      Unfortunately, it’s up to the vendor if they want to remove it from a hotel room. Provided they lost it in their booking information/during checkin, you have little recourse. The only thing you can do Is leave negative reviews online.

  62. Caroline
    July 30, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    it wasn’t voluntary at the House of Frankenstein, and it was hidden. They called it a tourist fee. When I asked about it. they got mad and threatened to call the police. This was today.

  63. Heather
    August 20, 2015 at 10:27 am

    Yikes!! We are in this trap right now! It makes the vacation very stressful! 35.00 a day plus tax for parking no other choice. 23%tax and holding 10% of total for incidentals if we break something in our room. Booked through their website online and no mention of this extra tax,parking, and debit and hold money for the duration of your stay. They did not mention the 72 hour cancellation policy. Once you get hooked you feel helpless and just want to leave as soon as possible and NEVER return to stay in this cluster of hotels. Gorgeous view, Yes, of course. Not worth the stress!!!!!!!!!!

  64. pollack137@hotmail.com
    August 21, 2015 at 7:26 pm

    I just returned from a 2 day stay in Niagara Falls Best Western and was disgusted by the cash grabs at every turn. Hotel parking, resort fees, tourist tax and generally ridiculous prices for everything. Icing on the cake is the HST tax on the tourist tax. I am sure the members of Municipal government of Niagara falls lay awake at night trying to find a way to tax the HST. Only way to fight back is to never return and spread the word.

  65. Alastor 4
    October 26, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    I recently returned from a trip to Niagara Falls.

    These fees (under a different acronym) were found on both a restaurant bill and a hotel bill. I asked at the restaurant what this mystery fee was, and was told about a fee for fireworks. I scratched my head in confusion…but,
    We were NOT told it was a voluntary fee, thus we paid the bill.
    NOTE: I’m talking about a 6-7% tourist fee, not 3%.

    Re: the hotel. At this point, I was wise to their ways after doing some online research that evening, and asked to ensure it would not appear on my checkout bill the next morning. The clerk said she would make the necessary changes on the computer.

    Of couse – they conveniently forgot the next morning, thus I reminded the girl again what I had discussed with another front desk clerk the previous evening.
    That ‘voluntary’ tax was removed.

    Frankly – I’m sick of this and I want answers. I want every single penny accounted for, for every single Canadian city that participates in these tourist taxes.
    We have every right to know and formal investigations should be carried out.

    As far as I’m concerned, I’m never stepping foot in Niagara Falls again.
    The accomodatings and food is far overpriced. Then, adding insult to injury, a tourist tax?

    I have to pay for the right to enjoy a city, that is already making hand over fist in tourism dollars?

    Oh – and where the hell were my fireworks that this fee was supposedly for, according to the waitress?
    I didn’t get any specialty fireworks treatment for any of the nights that we stayed in Niagara Falls.

    Moral of the story?
    Look at your bills closely. It’s your money – not theirs.
    If he/she tells you they cannot remove it from the bill.
    Say: “Yes, you can and if you don’t, I’d like to speak to the manager”
    If he/she still refuses, then by all means – refuse to pay the bill, call the police and embarrass the hell out of the manager and be sure to let everyone else in the restaurant aware of what’s going on.

  66. Paula Berketo
    March 30, 2016 at 9:44 pm

    I dont recall any hotel I have stayed in, whether in Ottawa, New York City or Toronto where a fee for parking has not been charged. I have lived in the peninsula my whole life and in Niagara Falls for 26 years. I love it here. There is so much the City has to offer that costs very little if anything. Take a drive only 10 minutes away and fill up your car with fresh local produce. There are ways to eat other than in restaurants. You dont have to sleep right next to the falls. Stay a few km away and use the shuttle buses. The falls and gardens are spectacular. We went all the time with family and always broughta picnic. Read about the history and daredevils and Tesla. Go for a stroll. The fees should not be a deterrant. You know what to watch for and as in any destination beware. Dont let it sour one of the greatest wonders!

  67. April 1, 2016 at 9:02 am

    I agree with the comments indicating that one should always look at their bills. Really it is a good thing to do anytime you purchase. I am always surprised at the number of people that say they do not even want a copy of their receipts. How can you know what you are paying for when they add fees like this? In regards to the tourist improvement fees. Come visit us in London, Ontario sometime. We would be happy to have you explore our nature locations ( see my video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e-Pm4ENg4v0 ) or explore our downtown events or try the airport as a departure point. We would be happy to have you.

    • audrey arnold
      May 28, 2016 at 1:12 pm

      Stayed at the four points in Niagara falls. The lady at the front desk said it is mandatory to pay the tourist tax. but this time and this time only would she not charge me. he he.

  68. Katherine O'Brienu
    June 4, 2016 at 4:41 pm

    I am being told it is no longer voluntary and the business has no obligation to remove it when asked—, is this true

    • June 5, 2016 at 8:25 pm

      It depends on where the money is going. I’ve not been to the Falls in a while so I don’t know. I’ll see what I can find out though.

    • northy
      June 6, 2016 at 2:39 am

      i stayed at the Crowne Plaza in Niagara last week, and asked for it to be taken off my bill. At first they were reluctant, as they said we lived outside of Ontario, but when i pointed out that it wasnt a state tax, and was voluntary, they then took it off.

      • Bri
        June 8, 2016 at 11:12 am

        Oh so meaning if someone lives in Ontario they actually “shouldn’t” charge?

        I usually stay at Crowne Plaza I will make sure next time to ask them to remove it.

        Another thing too here is that if you go to Starbucks you can’t even claim “free” drink because their prices are jacked up!

  69. Brian
    June 9, 2016 at 10:06 am

    was in Niagara last week and made a few purchases. Didnt know anything about this but did notice my bills higher than i calculated in my head. When questioning the Stabucks employee they told me tax was 21% I said is this not Ontario ? She said its different here?? For a couple bucks i didnt argue. Then i went to 4 Seasons gift shop ..same thing she said her tax was 19%?? Didnt even look at my Keg or Hotel bill night before. Guess i got ripped off there too

  70. Bri
    June 10, 2016 at 2:46 pm

    I wonder if someone contacted CBC or any news station about this.

  1. March 25, 2014 at 2:58 pm
  2. May 7, 2014 at 1:36 pm
  3. May 9, 2014 at 8:04 am
  4. September 5, 2015 at 1:58 am

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