Tourist Development Tax collection showed a 176.5% increase in South Walton for March 2021 compared with the previous year. Total collections for March 2021 were $4,680,055. To compare to pre-COVID collections, collection totals at 2% TDT were compared to eliminate the issue of tax rate changes which showed that March 2021's TDT collection was a 55.6% increase compared to March 2019.
The Tourist Development Tax, or bed tax, is a five percent tax collected on hotels, condos and other short-term rentals. It is the best way to gauge visitation and demand trends in South Walton. The revenue supports tourism marketing and beach operations including cleaning and maintaining beaches, lifeguards, destination improvements, and preservation initiatives.