TOURISTS CAN NOW AVAIL TAX-FREE SHOPPING!
Q. From when can tax refund be availed?
The Federal Tax Authority – FTA has declared that Tax Refund Scheme for tourists will be initiated from November 2018. In this scheme, tourists will be able to avail VAT refund if they shop from retailers like Shopkees who have registered for Tax Refund Scheme for Tourists.
Q. Where can tax refund be availed?
Tax can be refunded from the airport (Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah International Airports) or any point of exit in the UAE. 16th December onwards, there would be an addition of 9 more refund points: Al Maktoum airport, Abu Dhabi Port Zayed, Al Ain Airport, Al Ain land border, Fujairah Airport, Ras Al Khaimah Airport, Al Ghuwaifat land border, Hatta land border and Dubai Mina Rashid Harbour..
Q. How much tax refund are you eligible for?
You are eligible for 5% Tax Refund for purchases you make in the UAE excluding an additional processing fee of 4.80 AED per invoice
Among the incentives offered by the new system is the refund of VAT on purchases of up to AED 10,000 in cash for every overseas tourist within every 24 hours, while there is no maximum cap where amounts due for refund are paid to your credit card.
Q. What is the eligibility criteria?
▶ You must be an “Overseas tourist”, which means any person who is not resident in any of the Implementing States and who is not a crew member on a flight or aircraft leaving an Implementing State. Therefore, under the current rules, GCC Nationals are eligible.
▶ There is a minimum purchase requirement of AED 250 per tax invoice to avail tourist refund scheme.
▶ You must be above 18 years of age
Q. Can you buy your goods online?
Yes, if the goods are picked up from the store in person. The receipt should state the same date as the date of collection. If shopping on www.shopkees.com, avail the 'Click and Collect' option.
Q. What’s the process of availing the tax refund?
▶ You must purchase from a retailer like Shopkees who has registered for “Tax Refund Scheme for Tourist”.
▶ You must present a valid passport upon request of Tax refund for every purchase.
▶ A Tax-Free tag will be issued by the retailer for the recipt.
▶ You must keep all receipts with the Tax-Free tag on the back of the receipt and must validate the transaction at the point of exit during departure (airport). Visit the Planet validation point: For airports, this is before checking in and going through security.
▶ Finally, present your receipts or tax invoice with Tax-free Tag, credit cards you used to make the purchase, and passport at the validation point to confirm your refunds. You will be refunded through your credit card or cash.
Q. Are there any exceptions?
▶ Goods that are partially or fully consumed in the UAE are not eligible.
▶ Goods that have been used, fully or partly, in the UAE and are not accompanied by the original packaging (for example: a smartphone that was used in the UAE and is accompanied by the original packaging upon leaving the UAE is eligible, but if the packaging is not present it is not eligible);
▶ Goods purchased online, unless they are picked up in person at the store, and the receipt and Tax Free Tag are issued on the same day as the collection date.
▶ You must bring the goods upon leaving the Emirates.
▶ Motor vehicles, boats, and aircraft are not qualified for Tax Refund Scheme for Tourist.
▶ Crew members of flight or aircraft and all the GCC residents are not eligible for Tourist Tax Refund.
▶ Goods sold to companies.
Q. What time should you arrive for your flight to complete the tax-free process?
It is advised to arrive few minutes early to validate the tax free tags.
Q. How much time do you have to complete the whole procedure?
Your tax-free tag needs to be validated within 90 days of the purchase date.
Q. Can you request refund on someone else’s behalf?
The person requesting the refund must be the person whose name and passport number are recorded during issuing the tag. Requesting a refund on someone else’s behalf is not allowed.
Q. What if your refund is more than 10,000 AED?
Cash refund is available after airport security, and only up to 10,000 AED per person in any 24-hour period. For higher amounts the only refund method available is a card refund.
Q. What if there is no cash refund agent present at the end point?
If exiting through points without a refund cash agent, a card refund is the only option available. If you validated a Tax Free Tag and chose cash as the refund method, but didn’t collect cash before leaving the UAE, then you will be able to enter your card details later on Planet Payment’s website using the Tax Free Tag number and check the status of your refund. For any queries regarding refunds, Tourists can contact at email@example.com.
Q. What if your card currency is not AED?
For refunds to cards in which the currency is not AED, foreign exchange rates will apply to convert funds into the card currency.
Q. What if you wish to return your products?
If the tax-free tag has been validated in the system, the FTA states that there can not be any return or refund possible.
However, if the tax-free tag has not been validated, it can be returned or refunded subject to the retailer’s decision.
Q. What if you have partially consumed the good?
You can claim the refund on partially used (mobile phones, laptops, etc) goods but not partially consumed products (milk, perfume, etc).
Q. Can you avail the tax refund on products sent through courier?
No, the products have to carried out of the country by the tourist when leaving the country. They cannot courier it.