A travel tax credit worth $4,000 per household could be part of the United States government’s next stimulus package.
Forbes reports the “Explore America” tax credit would offer “up to $4,000 [to] Americans for vacation expenses spent in the U.S. at hotels, theme parks, restaurants and other tourism-related businesses through the end of 2021. The credit would cover up to 50% of a household’s total vacation expenses, up to a maximum of four grand.” (I haven’t found anything explicitly stating airline ticket purchases would be covered but certainly hope they’d be permitted.)
President Donald Trump and the United States Travel Association both favor the idea. Whether or not Congress is warm to it remains to be seen.
This is somewhat in line with what Japan is doing to promote domestic tourism.
Some Points Worth Considering
Not a whole lot is known yet about the potential tax credit, but it seems to only cover travel within the United States.
Also, keep in mind this is a tax credit — not a stimulus check for $4,000 to go wild and spend however you want. Forbes doesn’t state if the Explore America tax credit would be refundable or non-refundable. (Though something tells me it would be non-refundable.)
A run to Hard Eight BBQ would be a fun way to earn some tax credits, yes? ;-)Plus, your household would have to spend at least $8,000 to receive the entire $4,000 tax credit. If you spend less, you simply get a proportional tax credit of that amount. For example, you’d receive a $1,000 tax credit if you spend $2,000 on Explore America-eligible purchases.
I like we’d have through 2021 to take advantage of the credit. Hopefully, we’ll all be traveling again (and often!) by then.
Keep in mind that because Explore America participants initially pay out of pocket, we can earn full points on our purchases! So if you have, say, the American Express Gold Card, you could earn up to 32,000 Membership Rewards points if you spend all $8,000 on restaurants. Or the Chase Sapphire Reserve or American Express Green Card, which both award 3X on travel and restaurant purchases, could net you 24,000 points.
What Do You Think?
Is this a good way to spend taxpayer dollars? Or should the potential Explore America kitty be used other ways? Tell your thoughts in the below Comments section!
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