Fenland is basking in sunshine, schools have broken up and the summer getaway has begun. With the bank holiday fast approaching, hotels across East Anglia look set for a busy August. So before the mid-summer rush for rooms really starts, TV Licensing is appealing to hotels and guest houses across the UK to make sure they are correctly licensed.
Travel associations have reported the best July in the UK for years, boosting domestic travel, with tour operators declaring strong demand and an increase in last minute hotel bookings. Holidaymakers are flocking to the Norfolk Broads and the county’s coastline to make the most of the stunning countryside.
Budget hotels, boutique B&Bs, luxury spa resorts or serviced apartments must all be covered by a TV Licence if guests or staff are watching live TV as it’s broadcast.
For many smaller hotels and guesthouses, the cost of a TV Licence is £145.50 a year, the same amount as a private house. Hotels with more than 15 rooms are covered by one licence for the first 15 rooms, but will need an additional licence for every five rooms thereafter.
Mark Whitehouse, spokesperson for TV Licensing in East Anglia, said: “August, culminating in a Bank Holiday weekend, is one of the busiest months in the hospitality calendar. Hotels, B&Bs and guest houses up and down the country will hopefully be hosting guests in record numbers.
“Whilst the comfort of hotel guests is paramount, it’s the manager’s responsibility to make sure holiday-makers are able to watch television legally by making sure the business is correctly licensed. Those without a valid licence are breaking the law and run the risk of a court prosecution and fine of up to £1,000 per offence, plus costs. According to research among business owners, long-term business reputation is more important than any gains made by cutting corners, particularly when it comes to keeping on the right side of the law.”
Peter Ducker FIH, Chief Executive of the Institute of Hospitality, added: “As the evidence builds that the UK economy is finally moving from rescue to recovery mode, hospitality operators will want to make the most of the busy holiday season. Making sure your business is fully compliant with the law, and that you hold a TV licence, is an important mark of your professionalism.”
Buying a licence is easy, and hoteliers can pay using BACS electronic transfer. For more information about TV Licensing requirements for hotels and accommodation providers, call the TV Licensing businesses team on 0300 790 6124 or visit www.tvlicensing.co.uk/hotels