Start a tourist accommodation business

Certifying a new accommodation business


To offer tourist accommodation in Northern Ireland, you must have a certificate from Tourism NI. It is illegal to offer tourist accommodation without certification.

Planning permission

Before seeking certification it is important to ensure you have met with any planning guidelines if you have had to make any building adjustments to the premises you intend to use for your accommodation business. See local council contact details in Northern Ireland.


Certification is mandatory for most establishments offering visitor accommodation in Northern Ireland. To apply to be certified by Tourism NI you can apply online submit with the other relevant documentation and fee.

The fee for the inspection is payable in advance for the first inspection. Statutory inspections then take place once every four years although Tourism NI can undertake an inspection at any time. The purpose of inspections is to ensure that the minimum requirements appropriate to the category continue to be met. If not, Tourism NI may add conditions to the certificate or revoke it.

A Certification Officer will conduct an inspection to determine if the premises can be allocated to the chosen category. If a certificate is issued, your premises becomes a Certified Tourist Establishment and you may start trading.

See tourist accommodation certification.

  • Tourism NI Industry Development
    028 9044 1673
Developed with:
  • Tourism NI