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A Simple Guide to Getting a VAT Refund as a Tourist in the UAE

Do you want to get the most out of your shopping experience when you travel to the United Arab Emirates (UAE)? happy news, UAE provides tourists with a VAT (Value Added Tax) return programme that enables you to recover some of the taxes you paid on your purchases. We’ll walk you through how to claim a VAT refund as a tourist in the UAE in this simple tutorial so you can maximise your shopping experience.

Step 1: Determine the Conditions to Fulfill

Before you start shopping, it’s essential to understand the conditions you need to meet to be eligible for a VAT refund:

  1. Shop at Participating Retailers: You must purchase goods from retailers who are part of the Tax Refund Scheme for tourists.
  2. Intention to Leave UAE: You should plan to leave the UAE within 90 days from the date of your purchase, along with the items you’ve bought.
  3. Export Goods: You must export the goods you’ve purchased out of the UAE within three months from the date of supply.
  4. Follow FTA Procedures: The entire purchase and export process must comply with the requirements and procedures set by the Federal Tax Authority (FTA).

Step 2: Check Designated VAT Refund Locations

To take advantage of the VAT refund scheme, you should shop at outlets and point-of-sales registered under the scheme for tourists. These locations will have electronic systems in place to determine the eligible taxes for refund, making the process smoother for you.

Step 3: Get the Tax-Free Tag

After completing your shopping, the retailer will attach a tax-free bag to your payment receipt. This tax-free tag is crucial as it allows you to avail the refund scheme, but only if your purchase totals at least AED 250. Remember, the tax-free tag remains valid for 90 days from the date of purchase.

Step 4: Validate Your Eligibility for VAT Refund

Validation is a necessary step to benefit from the tourist refund scheme. You will be asked for your passport and boarding permit, and additional checks might be made to make sure all processes are performed correctly.

Step 5: Choose Your Refund Method

You can choose between obtaining your VAT refund in cash or as a credit. Select the strategy that best meets your needs and put it into practise.

It’s worth noting that the UAE’s VAT refund for tourists has been streamlined to offer a fully electronic process with minimal human intervention. Both shops and visitors benefit from an exceptional customer experience as a result.

Summing It Up

To sum it up, nabbing a VAT refund as a tourist in the UAE is a breeze if you meet the required criteria and stick to the simple steps. It’s a great incentive for travellers to indulge in retail therapy while taking in this colourful country. To stay informed about any updates or clarifications regarding the VAT refund scheme, it’s advisable to keep an eye on the latest information issued by the UAE government or consult tax experts if needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the minimum purchase required to get a refund?

To qualify for a VAT refund, your total tax purchases must amount to at least AED 250.

Can I buy from any store and get a tax refund?

Not every store participates in the VAT refund scheme. However, there are currently over 4,500 enrolled retailers, and this number is anticipated to rise, giving customers more options.

Is there a maximum limit on refunds?

Yes, there is a maximum limit. Each tourist can receive a cashback of up to Dh10,000 daily.