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 Mar 23, 2021 at 12:36 PM

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 per room per night. Effective July 1, 2018, the room charge increases to $1.25 per night. The state transient occupancy tax is 2.0 percent of the total amount of the room rental charge.  Combined, the tax on room rentals is 8.5 percent of the room rental charge plus $1 per room per night ($1.25 per night beginning July 1, 2018).

Beginning May 1, 2021, the state Transient Occupancy Tax will increase to 3.0 percent, resulting in a combined tax of 9.5% 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)


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.

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.