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Barcelona plans to ban all short-term apartment rentals by 2028

A young female tourist in Barcelona. Image: Shutterstock

This decision is part of a broader strategy to make housing more affordable for residents and mitigate the negative impact of mass tourism on local communities.

Barcelona, a premier Spanish holiday destination, announced on Friday that it will prohibit apartment rentals to tourists by 2028. This unexpectedly bold decision is part of a broader strategy aimed at curbing skyrocketing housing costs and ensuring the city remains livable for its residents.

The city’s leftist mayor, Jaume Collboni, announced that by November 2028, Barcelona will revoke the licenses of the 10,101 apartments currently approved for short-term rentals.

“We are addressing what we believe is Barcelona’s biggest issue,” Collboni stated at a city government event.

The surge in short-term rentals in Barcelona, Spain’s most visited city by foreign tourists, has driven rents up by 68% over the past decade, while the cost of buying a house has increased by 38%, according to Collboni. This has left many residents unable to afford apartments. Collboni emphasized that access to housing has become a major factor in inequality, particularly affecting young people.

Previously set at €2.75, the tourist tax in Barcelona was raised to €3.25 in April 2024. The increase applies only to official tourist accommodations in the primary districts.

See also: Where can you fly from Barcelona at affordable prices?

Vardan Papikyan
the authorVardan Papikyan
Vardan is a content creator and optimization specialist based in Armenia, Yerevan city. He's contributing with collecting travel stories on