Imagine you are on the Europe trip you have always dreamt about and you definitely want to buy souvenirs to take for friends and family back home. But you find everything to be a bit too expensive after the taxes have been added.
For any purchases made in Italy shoppers have to pay a VAT of 22% which is known as the IVA in Italian.
The percentage of VAT goes up depending on the product or service purchased. But being a smart and informed shopper can make buying less expensive for you. You can make your shopping spree less expensive by claiming a VAT refund. Read on how to find out more about how you can claim a VAT refund while shopping in Italy.
The Conditions You Need to Fulfill to Claim A Vat Refund in Italy
There are 4 conditions you need to fulfill if you want to claim a VAT refund in Italy.
The conditions are listed below:
- You must not be resident of the European Union. If you are a citizen or resident of Italy or any other country within the boundaries of the European Union then you cannot claim a VAT refund in Italy.
- You must not use or consume the products you purchase before you leave Italy. A VAT refund cannot be claimed on any products that have been used.
- You must have spent a minimum of 175 euros in one establishment to claim a VAT refund within Italy.
- You must save copies of all the bills and invoices of your purchases in Italy if you wish to claim a VAT refund.
Things You Need to Keep in Mind While Filing A Vat Refund in Italy
Here is a list of things that you need to keep in mind if you want to claim a VAT refund.
- If you are travelling to multiple countries within the European Union then you must claim a VAT refund in the last country you visit.
- The minimum value of money spent to claim a VAT refund on may be different in different countries so it is wise to save the invoices and bills from your purchases.
- You cannot claim VAT refunds for services that you have already used. This includes your meals at restaurants, your accommodation, visits to museums and galleries etc.
- Make sure to have your passport or some form of government ID so the process of filling forms is easier.
- You can claim VAT refunds on your purchases on every trip to Italy.
The Various Ways You Can Claim A Vat Refund in Italy
- There are some shops in Italy which sell their products tax-free. So, the tax is not added to your bill while purchasing which helps you save money.
- There are various tourist tax refund companies in Italy. Tourists can take a VAT refund from here. These are found in major airports and tourist hotspots.
- You can get your VAT refund from customs points in Italy. You will find these at airports and you can get a customs stamp on your VAT refund forms here.
After you have done these procedures you can get your VAT refund from the tourism tax refund company directly. You will get anywhere between 10% to 16% of the money you spent as some administrative fee will be deducted. If you opt for a cash refund then you will get the money immediately while choosing a credit card will make you wait for 2-3 months for the refund and you may also have to pay some operational costs.