What is a Tax-Free form? /

Tax-Free forms are documents used for VAT refund purposes. They can be provided to you by the government, by stores which use a Tax-Free company to process VAT refund claims, or can be downloaded from the internet.

A Tax-Free form can have 2 purposes: 

  1. Substitute for official purchase invoice: a Tax-Free form serves as a replacement for an official purchase invoice from the store. It usually shows the same information as an invoice, like your name, non-EU billing address and other information about the items you bought.

  2. Contract with Tax-Free company: some Tax-Free forms function as a contract between you and the Tax-Free company to process your VAT refund claim and personal data. Since Tax-Free companies are commercial service providers, they charge a service fee.

A Tax-Free form typically includes the same information as an official purchase invoice, plus details of the Tax-Free company if they issued the form:

Did you know:

✅ In most EU countries it is not mandatory to have a Tax-Free form to be eligible for VAT refunds. A proper purchase invoice showing your name, non-EU billing address and passport number is sufficient. 

✅ Tax-Free forms are often completed by the store at the moment of purchase.

✅ Tax-Free forms usually specify the exact refund amount for a specific purchase at a specific store.

✅ Tax-Free forms come in various shapes and sizes, ranging from regular A4 sheets to those resembling normal receipts, albeit usually longer.

✅ Customs departments throughout the EU accept Tax-Free forms as a replacement of an official purchase invoice from the store.

✅ Tax-Free forms can be submitted for cash refunds if the Tax-Free company mentioned on the form has a desk at the airport. In most cases there will be an extra fee charged for refunds in cash.

✅ In a few countries—like Italy, France and Spain— the Tax-Free form is mandatory for VAT refunds from local stores. Italian, French and Spanish stores must provide you with a Tax-Free form at the moment of purchase. Without it, you can not get proof of export from Customs. If you have receipts from stores in other EU countries, Customs will provide proof of export if you bring your own Tax-Free form.

Names of Tax-Free companies issuing forms in the European Union are:

Global Blue

Planet / Premiere TaxFree

E-pay / Innova TaxFree

Easy Tax Free

Frequently Asked Questions:

Where can I find the Global Blue service fee?

Where can I find the Planet Payment Service fee?
Where can I find the Easy Tax Free service fee?

What is the service fee? refund calculator

What if I find a lower fee somewhere else? 

How do fees compare to other Tax-Free companies? 

Why do I pay a service fee?

Tax Free forms can look like this: