With the FIFA World Cup obligation expected to cost approximately $230 million, the City of Vancouver is planning to use a new tax to help cover it.
In fall, the city asked for an increase to the Municipal and Regional District Tax to help with costs. Instead, the province has made changes to the Provincial Sales Tax Act so communities can apply for an additional Major Events MRDT for as much as 2.5% on short-term accommodation sales.
Overnight visitors to Vancouver will see an additional $2.50 on each $100 paid on short-term accommodations beginning February 1st.
“We are thrilled Vancouver is a host city to FIFA 2026 and pleased with the collaboration that has already taken place to help ensure this event is a success,” said Minister of Finance Katrine Conroy. “Similar to how the Province helped Whistler fund its 2010 Winter Olympics, we’re grateful for all our partners who are working together to give soccer fans, people in the tourism sector and all British Columbians this once-in-a-generation opportunity.”
The change is expected to help cover costs, and act as a new tool for other communities who also hope to host events with the potential to draw significant international tourism.
The initial estimated costs of the FIFA World Cup 2026 include the following;
- Obligation cost – $230 million
- Safety and security – $73 million
- Contingency, including inflation – $52 million
- Venues – $40 million
- FIFA Fan Festival – $20 million
- Host City office, administration and volunteer services – $15 million
- Host City decoration and brand protection obligations – $8 million
- Traffic and stadium zone management and services – $14 million
- Insurance – $8 million
They may be subject to change as time goes on.
“The exposure that comes with being a host city for the FIFA World Cup strengthens Vancouver’s game in the global competition with other cities for visitors, talent, thought leadership, innovation and investment,” said President and CEO of Destination Vancouver, Royce Chwin. “The Province and city’s investment in an event of this scale is a major step in continuing to build a vibrant and resilient visitor economy – a visitor economy that brings in close to $15 billion annually and supports more than 100,000 jobs.”
Destination Vancouver estimates the Cup will bring 269,000 visitors, with around 50% of them from outside Canada and the U.S.
The Major Events MRDT has helped support multiple other sporting events in the past, such as the BC Summer Games, BC Winter Games, and the 2021 Skate Canada International for Figure Skating.