What is a Destination Marketing Fee?

Participating Promote Iowa City lodging properties assess an optional 1.5% fee on all room rates. This is to be used to enhance destination branding/advertising/marketing, conference and amateur sports bid fees, sponsorship opportunities, and other tourism infrastructure development projects.

DMF’s are quite common in tourism oriented cities and while their structures may differ to some extent the purpose, to enhance current marketing and assistance to community endeavors, is the same.

Why is it necessary?

Funding for marketing and community endeavors is limited. This funding assists our area to bring more visitors to experience all that Iowa City has to offer and remain competitive in the marketplace. The DMF allows the hospitality community to increase the funding and all the lodging stakeholders to play a part in the decision making for fund allocation.

Competition for visitors, amateur sports events, and conferences & meetings is great and getting greater. The DMF provides the Iowa City area with an advantage in getting in front of the right people at the right times in their decision making process.

These dollars will help in maximizing the efforts of the community and its citizens with regards to producing and enhancing the special events they develop.

What is the method of determining how much money individual properties with contribute?

Each property includes a 1.5% DMF (Destination Marketing Fee) on their properties room sales.

How does the DMF differ from the current tourism taxes put on bill by provincial government?

Sales tax and hotel/motel taxes are directed by government and are legislated. The DMF on the other hand is customers of individual properties/business volunteering to contribute funds to a joint marketing and community programs.

Who administers the DMF?

Promote Iowa City is a non-profit entity that administers the DMF with all participating properties. A Board of Directors, consisting of management from each participating lodging property determines the best use of the funds.

How does Promote Iowa City relate to the tourism in the area?

Promote Iowa City works closely with Think Iowa City (the Iowa City/Coralville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau) to coordinate message, theme, design, and audience.

What is the government’s role in the DMF?

None.  Since this is not a government program or a tax but a group of lodging properties working together to provide the area with regional marketing and community endeavors with additional resources.

Is this being done in response to cut backs in government funding?

No. This is merely a group of lodging properties stepping up to ensure that ample regional marketing is done as well as community endeavors. A great place to visit is a great place to live.

What does voluntary mean?

Each participating lodging property enters into a contract with Promote Iowa City, agreeing to collect a 1.5% DMF (Destination Marketing Fee).  The remittance schedule will coincide at the end of each month.