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HMRC internal manual

VAT Land and Property

Hotels and similar establishments (Item 1d): what is a hotel, inn or boarding house?

The legislation does not define the terms hotel, inn or boarding house and it is therefore necessary to apply their ordinary natural meanings.

The term “boarding house” is used less frequently these days but is generally taken to mean an establishment at which food and lodging is provided in return for a charge.

An “inn” is historically a house, including a public house, which provides lodging for payment especially for travellers.