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Keeping track: hotel taxation

Texas doesn't hesitate to tax its tourists

Getting a low room rate at a hotel stay can be rewarding. But don't be surprised if the final bill ends up being much larger. A study by Runzheimer International, a Wisconsin-based management consulting firm, found that lodging taxes - a combination of city and state taxes - are especially high in Texas. For example, a person who pays $239 to stay at a first class hotel in Houston, would spend an extra $41 on lodging taxes.

"There seems to be an unquenchable need for municipalities to tax those who aren't beneficiaries of the tax," says Rolfe Shellenberger, a senior travel consultant at Runzheimer.

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