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Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT)/Tourism Marketing District (TMD)

TMD Frequently Asked Questions

By Facility Operators

What is the purpose of the TMD assessment?

The purpose of the TMD assessment is to promote events and tourism in San Diego.

Which facilities are required to remit the TMD assessment?

The TMD assessment is applicable to all lodging businesses remitting TOT within the City of San Diego.

How do I calculate the amount due for the TMD assessment?

Lodging businesses with 30 or more rooms/units are subject to both TMD Category A (1.45%) and TMD Category B (.55%); therefore, the total TMD assessment is 2% of Assessable Rent. For lodging businesses with 29 or fewer rooms/units, the assessment due is 0.55% (TMD Category B only) of Assessable Rent. Tourism Marketing District Resolution, Number RR-307843 (PDF).

How long will the TMD assessment be levied?

The TMD assessment has been renewed for thirty nine and one-half (39 1/2) years, commencing on January 1, 2013 and terminating June 30, 2052.

When will my TMD assessment payment be due to the City of San Diego?

TMD must be remitted monthly and is due no later than the last day of the month following the month you are reporting on (i.e. May 31 for the month of April).

Are the exemptions for TMD the same as TOT?

Yes, any qualified TOT exemption would also qualify for a TMD exemption. Additionally, "Assessable Rent" shall not include rent resulting from stays pursuant to contracts executed prior to January 1, 2013; this exemption is not common.

For additional information see Exempt Contract Rent

Is there a different return to report the TMD assessment?

No. TMD will continue to be reported with TOT. However, for a short time, two returns will be available on the City Treasurer's website, one for reporting periods through 12/31/12 and a new return for all subsequent reporting periods. The new return will be available by January 31, 2013.

How do I remit my TOT/TMD return?

There are three ways to pay: online, by mail, or in person.

What if my TMD payment is late?

A penalty is assessed. The penalty is 1% of the TMD assessment amount due for the 1st delinquent day, plus 1/3 of 1% for each additional day, not to exceed 25%. This is the same penalty calculation for late TOT payments (PDF).

What if a lodging business expands to thirty (30) or more rooms/units during the TMD assessment period?

If a lodging business expands to thirty (30) or more rooms/units, the higher rate of 2% must be remitted.

Can TOT and TMD be combined on the guest folio (as 11.05% for example) and reported as a combined total to the City?

No. TMD is an assessment levied on the Operator of the lodging business. This assessment may be passed onto the guest but must be shown as a separate line item on the folio. TOT and the TMD assessment must also be reported separately on the monthly return submitted to the City.

By Guests

What is the purpose of the TMD assessment?

The purpose of the TMD assessment is to promote events and tourism in San Diego.

As a guest, am I required to pay the TMD assessment?

The TMD assessment is levied solely on the lodging business making the Facility Operator responsible for the payment of TMD. The Facility Operator may elect to pass the TMD assessment onto the guest.

Are the qualifications for exemption from the TMD assessment the same as TOT?

Yes. Please refer to the TOT exemption qualifications to determine if your stay is exempt from TOT and TMD.


These FAQs are presented for general guidance only. They do not provide specific advice about a particular set of facts, and may not be relied upon as a defense to a complaint alleging any violation. Please refer to Article 5: Transient Occupancy Tax code (PDF), Article 1, Division 25: San Diego Tourism Marketing District Procedural Ordinance (PDF) of the San Diego Municipal Code and REsolution R-307843 for the applicable laws and regulations.