Transient Lodging Tax

Information on the transient lodging tax, such as when the dates are due for the tax, the computation of tax, and filing procedures.

Page updated on Oct 1, 2021 at 10:41 AM

Due Dates

Hotels that rent rooms or spaces to any person on a transient basis, that is, 90 consecutive days or less, must collect both a City tax and a state tax. Transient lodging taxes are due the last day of the month following the month being reported.


Month Taxes
Collected from Customer
Due Date 
January February 28
February March 31
March April 30
April May 31
May June 30
June July 31
July August 31
August September 30
September October 31
October November 30
November December 31
December January 31

Computation of Tax

The City tax is 6.5 percent of the total amount of the room rental charge, plus $1.25 per room per night. Prior to May 1, 2021, the state transient occupancy tax was 2.0 percent of the total amount of the room rental charge. 

Effective May 1, 2021, the state transient occupancy tax rate increased to 3.0 percent, resulting in a combined City and State tax of 9.5 percent of the room rental charge plus $1.25 per room per night. This is based on a state code amendment to Sections 58.1-1743 and 58.1-1744.

Filing Procedures

Every hotel collecting City and state transient lodging taxes must file a transient lodging tax return and remit taxes monthly to the City. Monthly returns and remittances must be filed with the Finance Department on or before the last day of each month covering the amount of tax collected during the preceding month.

Persons liable for the tax must file returns with:

Business Tax Section--Transient Lodging Tax
Revenue Division, Department of Finance
P.O. Box 34842
Alexandria, VA 22334-0939

Payments may be submitted (along with returns) to the address above or online by eCheck or credit card. Returns may not be submitted electronically at this time.

Report forms may be downloaded here: 

Transient Lodging Tax Return 

Transient Lodging Tax Return - Short Term Rentals

Or obtained from:

Business Tax Section
301 King Street, Room 1700
Alexandria, VA 22314
Email: Email button(1)


Accommodations Intermediary - Any person other than an accommodations provider that facilitates the sale of an accommodation, charges a room charge to the customer, and charges an accommodations fee to the customer, which fee it retains as compensation for facilitating the sale. For purposes of this definition, "facilitates the sale" includes brokering, coordinating, or in any other way arranging for the purchase of the right to use accommodations via a transaction directly, including via one or more payment processors, between a customer and an accommodations provider.

Hotel - Any public or private hotel, inn, apartment hotel, hostelry, tourist home or house, motel, rooming house, short-term residential rental as defined by Section 3-2-152, or other lodging place within the City offering lodging to any transient for compensation. 

Person - Any individual, firm, partnership, association, corporation, person acting in a representative capacity or any group of individuals acting as a unit.

Transient - Any person who, for a period of not more than 90 consecutive days or, for short-term residential rentals, for a period of fewer than 30 consecutive days, either at his expense or at the expense of another, obtains lodging at a cost in a hotel for a period of not more than 90 consecutive days.

Short Term Residential Rentals (such as Airbnb and other platforms)

All hosts of Short Term Residential Rentals are required by law to Register with the Department of Finance

See Section 3-2-152 of the Code of the City of Alexandria for program requirements and exceptions.

Changes to Transient Lodging Effective September 1, 2021

Effective September 1, 2021, the Virginia General Assembly enacted legislation amending the stature for calculating, collecting, and remitting Sales and Use tax and Transient Lodging tax (including Transportation tax for certain localities) for accommodation intermediaries. The taxes shall be calculated on the total room charge and any fees assessed by the lodging provider and accommodations intermediaries.

Short-Term Residential Rental Property Owners

If you do not utilize accommodation intermediaries to collect the room charges, fees, and taxes on your behalf, you are required to collect and remit the taxes on a monthly basis directly to the City of Alexandria.

The City of Alexandria Code Section 3-2-152 requires the operator of each short-term residential property to register with the Department of Finance on an annual basis. Please complete the online registry, reporting each platform you use to advertise your property. All property owners and property managers must register and complete the annual registration by October 15, 2021.

Accommodations Intermediaries

As amended, Code of Virginia §58.1-3826 (C) requires accommodations intermediaries to collect transient lodging tax (TLT) and remit on a monthly basis as follows:

  • If the accommodation was facilitated for a short-term rental, remit TLT directly to the City;
  • If the accommodation was facilitated for a hotel:
    • remit TLT collected on the accommodation fees directly to the City;
    • remit TLT collected on the total room charge less accommodation fees directly to the hotel (for remittance to the City).

If you have any questions regarding this matter, please contact our office by phone at 703.746.4800 or by email at

Excluded from Taxation

The following are exempted from the transient lodging tax:

  • Room rentals paid directly by the federal, state, or City government;
  • Room rentals paid to any hospital, medical clinic, convalescent home or home for aged people;
  • Room rentals paid by any person enrolled in, and attending full-time, a school, college or university within the corporate limits of the City; and
  • Rentals paid by foreign diplomats holding a tax exemption card issued by the U.S. State Department.

Bonds for Fiduciary Taxes

Any business more than two months past due in the payment of admissions, meal sales, or transient lodging taxes may be required to post a bond for these taxes. Since fiduciary taxes collected from customers are held in trust by the business owner, they should not be commingled with the business' operating funds.

Business Records and Reports Subject to Audit

Persons liable for the tax should keep current and accurate records for a period of three years for audit by the City.