Vatfree.com
How can I safely share a copy of my passport? /

We encourage you to block the sensitive information of your passport yourself, before you send us a copy for our administration. After you have blocked the sensitive information of your passport, you can also scan/print it, write over it by hand, and rescan this copy. This will make identity theft with the copy of your passport extremely difficult and unlikely to occur.

If you don't block your sensitive information yourself we will do it for you before saving the copy of your passport permanently to our system. We never share the original copy of your passport (these are deleted after blocking) and we only share the blocked versions of your documents if the retailer or tax administration requires them. 


Details you can blockplace of birth, sex, height, social security number, photo, signature, name of spouse, profession, family members names, marital status                                                         
Details that should stay visiblepassport number, name, date of birth, country, issue date, expiration date

The specimen below is an example of a Dutch passport. Your own passport and the position of sensitive details may differ. 
 

Example:



What's the deadline / expiration date for submitting a claim? /

In all EU countries, items must be exported before the end of the 3rd month after the month of purchase.

After getting proof of export, the deadline for submitting a claim varies per country:

AU Austria 3 years / 1095 days 
BE Belgium* 3 years / 1095 days
BG Bulgaria 5 years / 1825 days 
CR Croatia 5 years / 1825 days 
CY Cyprus 5 years / 1825 days 
CZ Czech Rpblk 5 years / 1825 days 
DE Germany 4 years / 1825 days 
DK Denmark 1 year / 365 days 
ES Spain 5 years / 1825 days 
ET Estonia 5 years / 1825 days 
FI Finland 5 months / 150 days 
FR France 6 months / 180 days 
GR Greece 90 days 
HU Hungary 5 years / 1825 days 
IR Ireland 5 years / 1825 days 
IT Italy 3 months / 90 days 
LI Lithuania 5 years / 1825 days 
LU Luxembourg 5 years / 1825 days 
LV Latvia 5 years / 1825 days 
MT Malta 5 years / 1825 days 
NL Netherlands 5 years / 1825 days 
PL Poland 7 months / 210 days 
PT Portugal 5 years / 1825 days 
RO Roemania 5 years / 1825 days 
SE Sweden 1 year / 365 days 
SK Slovakia 5 years / 1825 days 
SV Slovenia 5 years / 1825 days 
UK United Kingdom 1 year / 365 days,  
NOTE: a
ll receipts/invoices from UK businesses issued after 1 January 2021 can no longer be submitted for a VAT refund. However, receipts/invoices from (web)retailers that have delivered outside the UK (via ocean freighter or courier) can still be submitted. Read More

*Stamped receipts for purchases made in Belgium are valid until December 31st of the third year after purchase date.

 

Where can I submit my payment details? /

You can submit you payment details in your account. 


After you have submitted your payment details, we'll ask you to confirm them again when you submit a payment request. find out how to request payment here.





Can I submit a claim for online purchases? /

Yes, you can submit claims for items bought online.

There are different online shopping and delivery situations that will determine which procedures you must follow to claim back the VAT:

  1. Store delivers to EU address You export the items yourself via air, car or train
  2. Store delivers to EU address A shipping company exports the items for you (ocean and air)
  3. Store delivers to non-EU address directly via air courier (DHL, FedEX, PostNL)
  4. Store delivers to non-EU address directly →  via ocean freighter
Why do I need to submit original documents by post? /

Don't worry! In most cases you don't need to send original documents by post. As an exception, we might ask for your originals if:


Your receipt status will show wether you need to send originals by post. Our address for postal mail can be found here.

Do I need to send my documents by post? (ocean export) /

If you submit a claim for items that have been exported via ocean freighter you don't need to send your original documents to our office in the post. You can submit all your documents digitally.

Your shipping company submits and receives digital export documents from harbour customs. 
These export documents are sufficient to prove that your goods have been exported to a country outside the EU. 

Please keep any original receipts safe at home until after the store has processed your claim.

Where is your office located? / Our office is located in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.Can I submit a claim for items exported via ocean freighter? /

Yes, you can submit a claim for goods that have been exported by a shipping company oversees.

You can read about what documents you will need to provide here.

A detailed guide on how to register your claim in your account can be found
here.

Do you need my original documents? (NATO) /

No. If you are a NATO employee you don't have to send your original documents to our office in the post. You may submit your claims digitally. 

Am I eligible for a VAT refund? /
You're eligible for a VAT refund if you meet the NEMS-requirements:

NYou're a non-EU resident and you purchase items in the EU for personal use in your non-EU homecountry
EYou export the goods to your non-EU homecountry before the end of the third month, after the month of purchase
M

    You spend a minimum amount per store, per day

    SYou receive a stamp from customs on a valid receipt (or other digital export confirmation)

    Digital export documents are always accepted if you export via courier (DHL, FedEX, UPS) or ocean freighter

    Other eligible groups include:


    For more information about tax-free shopping in the EU: https://taxation-customs.ec.europa.eu/guide-vat-refund-visitors-eu_en

    Where can I get a customs stamp at Schiphol, Amsterdam airport? /


    Customs desk locations
    Opening hoursDesk open from 06:00 – 22:00

    Customs officers are present at the airport 24/7

    If the desk is closed, y
    ou can contact customs via the numbers mentioned above (also displayed on the customs desk). A customs officer will come down to the desk to stamp your receipts.
    Contact
    • During the day (06:00 - 22:30): +31881583900
    • At night (22:30 - 06:00): +31881583440
    How can I reset my password? /

    1. Go to the login page via our website or app and select the white button 'Click here to reset your password' (below the login button)



    2. On the next page, fill in your email address and click the button 'Send password reset code'. Your reset code is sent to you by email. 



    3. You can now enter the Password Reset Code we sent via email and choose a new password. You will be logged in automatically



    After logging back into your account, if you can't see any previously registered receipts, it could be the case you have 2 accounts with Vatfree.com. Try to do another password reset for your other email address.


    If you would like to merge your duplicate accounts, please contact us via [email protected].


    Which documents do I need to bring to customs? - Airplane, car, train /

    That depends on the EU country you are departing from. We advise you to check our country guides to see the rules for Customs in different EU countries.

    Overall, most EU Customs departments want to see your:

    NATO Netherlands - Shopping at Dutch stores /

    This article applies to NATO military employees stationed in the Netherlands, buying at Dutch stores. If you're stationed inside the Netherlands and buying from stores located outside the Netherlands (but inside the EU), please follow instructions here. To request a VAT refund, please follow the steps below:


    1. At the moment of purchase, ask for a Customs Tax Invoice
      Store employees are required to fill in your CTI. A minimum purchase amount of €45 (per CTI) applies.

    2. After visiting the store and receiving a CTI, go to your NATO base administration for a wet stamp / seal of approval.

    3. Create an account via our app or website


    4. On your account page, set your 'account type' to the correct NATO base; Brunssum


    1. On your receipt page, register your receipt and Customs Tax Invoice 


    When this process has been completed, we’ll check your documents and contact the store for your refund. You’ll be notified by email when a store has processed your claim. After receiving notification, payment can be requested by logging in to your account.



    Additional remarks:




    Do I need to pay import duties? /

    Each country has an import free threshold. This threshold varies per country. If your purchase amount exceeds this threshold, you will be required to declare your goods and pay import duties upon arrival in your country of destination.


    The thresholds of most countries can be found here.


    For more specific information on import duties for the country you are exporting too, please visit their government website for more information.

    Declaring goods is a responsibility every traveler has, whether the VAT is reclaimed or not. Once you leave the EU, it is up to customs in your non-EU home country to check that travellers declare their goods.

    How do I submit a VAT refund claim? /


    1. Create an account
      You can download our 
      app (Google Play | Apple Store) or create an account via our website.

      happn - Find the people you've crossed paths with Submit your tvOS apps to the App Store - Apple Developer


    2. Get proof of export or VAT exemption
      Find out where to get proof of export or VAT exemption here.

      Exporting yourself via airplane, car or train and don't have a receipt that meets all necessary 
      requirementsDownload and bring a tax-free form to customs in addition to your receipt.

      After getting proof of export or VAT exemption, always make photos/scans of all your documents, especially if you need to send them in via 
      post.


    3. Register your receipt/invoice in your account
      Register your receipt in your account. We’ll ask you to upload copies of your documents.


    After completing this process we'll keep you updated by email automatically. We'll provide a time-frame for your refund and we'll notify you when your VAT has come in from the store. Information about payment methods can be found here.

    How does vatfree.com handle my data? /

    Please read our full privacy statement here.

    Where is the vatfree.com mailbox at the airport? /

    Vatfree.com does not have special tax-free mailboxes at the airport. If we have asked you to mail your documents and you want to do so from the airport, please use a mailbox of the national regular postal service. Regular mailboxes and shops from national postal services can be found at different locations at the airport. If you are having difficulty finding a mailbox please ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction.

    At Schiphol, Amsterdam airport you can use the orange mailboxes. There is an orange mailbox located across the hall from customs. 

    Don't forget to include your contact details and registration numbers. Use a proper envelope and a postal stamp.

    Instead of wasting paper and trees, and to cut costs for lower service fees, we prefer to work completely digitally. We therefore don't have desks and mailboxes at the airport. In return, our partner stores generally no longer require you to submit original documents via post which means less hassle for you! They therefor no longer provide envelopes in-store. 



    What is your address for postal mail? /

    Before sending mail:

    1. Make pictures of your receipts
      Make a good quality picture of the entire receipt with the customs stamp visible. If something happens to your post, we'll still be able to help you with your pictures.

    2. Write your registration nr. on your receipt
      This will help us process your mail. 
      Register your receipt in your account to receive a registration number. After registration, your receipt number can be found on your 'my receipts' page or your email inbox.


    Address for regular mail / national postal services

    Address for courier mail (DHL, FedEx, UPS, etc.)
    vatfree.com
    att: Web
    P.O. Box 37234
    1030 AE Amsterdam
    The Netherlands

    vatfree.com / Andeloe
    De Clercqstraat 99-2
    1053 AH Amsterdam
    The Netherlands

    Telephone number: +3188 828 37 33

    Please note:
    To avoid unnecessary customs clearance costs,
    make sure to put the value 
    of the contents on your envelope/package on '€0.'


    How can I avoid paying transaction costs? /

    Transaction costs can be 0 to 2 EUR, depending on the payment method you choose:


    ⚠️ Visa and Mastercard: 2 EUR + our payment in EUR might be converted to the main currency of your card or USD, subject to your Banks' and Visa/Mastercard policies on international transactions

    ⚠️ PayPal: 2 EUR 

    ✅ European SEPA/IBAN: no transaction costs

    ✅ Alipay: no transaction costs

    ✅ WeChat: no transaction costs

    To avoid paying transaction costs you can:

    💡 Use European SEPA/IBAN, Alipay and WeChat as your payment method

    💡 Wait until all stores have paid your refunds so you only pay the transaction fee once


    Information about our Service Fee can be found
    here.

    What if customs is closed? /

    If customs is closed:

    1. Call the customs 24/7 helpline
      Customs officers are present at the airport 24/7. Most customs desks show a telephone number which you can call outside of opening hours. Customs officers will come down to stamp your receipts. If you're not sure, ask the airport information desk for more information.

      Information about customs at Schiphol can be found here.

    2. Declare your goods at your non-EU airport of arrival
      You can 'declare your goods' and get a stamp which proves your items have been imported into a country outside the EU. These offices are located between the bagage claim belts and the exit. You might be asked to pay import taxes and duties.

    3. Visit an embassy or consulate in your non-EU country of arrival
      You can go to the embassy of the EU country you departed from or the embassy of the country where you bought your goods. Call the embassy first to ask if they can help. Some embassies will direct you to a customs department. Bring the following with you:

      • tax-free form
      • purchase receipt
      • purchased items
      • flight itinerary showing when you exited the EU
      • passport
      • if you have an EU passport; another non-EU official government document proving you life outside the EU (visa, work-permit, residence-permit, etc)


    Please note that without a stamp from customs, we can't process your claim. No stamp = No refundThe tax-administration does not allow us to process claims without proof of export from customs, no matter what the reason was if you were not able to get a stamp. Processing a claim without a stamp can result in high fines for our company and the store. We kindly ask for your understanding in this matter.

    Where can I get a customs stamp? - Cruise / If you leave the EU by ship, you should be able to get a customs stamp at a customs office at the harbour (when leaving the EU or arriving in a non-EU country). Please be aware that not all harbours have a customs office. If you do not know whether the harbour has a customs office, contact the harbour customer service or your ocean liner to ask this. Can I get a VAT refund from any store? /

    Most stores guarantee a VAT refund and process your claim in a timely manner.


    For some stores it can take a bit more time and we might need to take legal action to retrieve your VAT. 


    The coloured logos in our shopping guide tell you if a store refunds VAT on first request and in a timely manner.


    More than 55.000 stores have already refunded VAT via Vatfree.com, so there’s more than enough choice for you to shop Tax-Free, hassle free, in the neighbourhood and online.



    Partner store
    Refund is guaranteed

    This is an official vatfree.com partner store. The store has signed a contract with Vatfree.com and a VAT refund is guaranteed.


    Pledger store
    Refund is highly likely

    This store has refunded VAT on a regular basis in the past. A VAT refund is highly likely on first request.


    New store
    Refund is highly likely for most new stores but can take time in some cases

    This store has recently been added to our system. We've never worked with them before so we don't know whether they'll refund your VAT on first request.

    Most new stores are familiar with VAT and export laws, and are more than happy to cooperate in a timely manner.

    Some new stores might take a bit more time to process your claim.


    Non-cooperative store
    Refund will take some time

    These stores have indicated they don’t want to refund VAT or that they only refund VAT via a specific route, and we might need to take legal action to retrieve it.


    What are your payment options? /

    Information about our service fee can be found here.

    Single Euro Payments Area



    Transaction Costs: 0 EUR
    Notes: Single Euro Payments Area, European IBAN accounts. Please check whether your country and bank account are supported for the SEPA payment method. A list of countries can be found here.
    Alipay
    Transaction Costs: 0 EUR
    Notes: 
    WeChat
    Transaction Costs: 0 EUR
    Notes: -
    MasterCard
    Transaction Costs: 2 EUR
    Notes: Depending on your Banks' and Visa/Mastercard policies on international transactions, if you have a non-EUR or multi-currency card, our payment in EUR might be converted to the default currency of your card + conversion costs might be charged.
    Visa
    Transaction Costs: 2 EUR
    Notes: Depending on your Banks' and Visa/Mastercard policies on international transactions, if you have a non-EUR or multi-currency card, our payment in EUR might be converted to the default currency of your card + conversion costs might be charged.
    PayPal
    Transaction Costs: 2 EUR
    Notes: Your PayPal account must be set to accept payment in EUR.
    In your PayPal account, go to Settings --> Money, banks and cards --> Add a Currency. Once you've received our payment in EUR, this will be converted to your local currency when you transfer the amount to your local bankaccount.


    Frequently Asked Questions

    Do I have to use my own bank account?

    How can I avoid paying transaction costs?

    When will you pay my refund?

    Which bank accounts can be submitted for the IBAN/SEPA payment method?

    Do you pay me automatically?

    Can I get a cash refund at the airport?
    Do Russian sanctions effect my payment?

    What do the coloured logo's in the shopping guide mean? /

    The coloured logos in our shopping guide tell you if a store refunds VAT on first request and in a timely manner. Most stores guarantee a VAT refund and process your claim in a timely manner. For some stores it can take a bit more time and we might need to take legal action to retrieve your VAT.  More than 55.000 stores have already refunded VAT via Vatfree.com, so there’s more than enough choice for you to shop tax-free, hassle free, in the neighbourhood and online.




    Partner store
    Refund is guaranteed

    This is an official vatfree.com partner store. The store has signed a contract with Vatfree.com and a VAT refund is guaranteed.


    Pledger store
    Refund is highly likely

    This store has refunded VAT on a regular basis in the past. A VAT refund is highly likely on first request.


    New store
    Refund is highly likely for most new stores but can take time in some cases

    This store has recently been added to our system. We've never worked with them before so we don't know whether they'll refund your VAT on first request.

    Most new stores are familiar with VAT and export laws, and are more than happy to cooperate in a timely manner.

    Some new stores might take a bit more time to process your claim.


    Non-cooperative store
    Refund will take some time

    These stores have indicated they don’t want to refund VAT or that they only refund VAT via a specific route, and we'll need to take legal action to retrieve it.
    When we notify the store about legal action, they might decide to quickly refund your VAT. If not, the court  process can take a year or longer to complete. We’ll keep you updated along the way.

    When the court orders the store to refund your VAT, you only pay our regular service fee. All legal costs are paid for by us. 


    Where can I get a customs stamp? - Car /

    If you leave the EU by car, you can get a customs stamp at a European Customs office on the EU border (the last EU country before crossing the border). You can also get an import stamp at the non-EU Customs office over the border. Be aware that non-EU Customs might ask you to pay import duties.

    ✅ Take a look at our map to find Customs offices along the EU border

    ✅ Check our country guides to see the rules for Customs in different EU countries.

    Overall, most EU Customs departments want to see your:


     

    What if a store is not listed or listed as 'new' in your shopping guide? /

    If the store where you shopped is not listed or has a white logo in our guide, this means that they have never refunded VAT via vatfree.com before. Feel free to register the new store and your receipt. We'll then continue to contact them and negotiate a refund on your behalf. If they don't want to cooperate we won't charge a fee. 

    We advise you to contact new stores directly first. Cc us in your message to the store so we can assist. A short message is sufficient, just to let them know you wish to submit a claim via vatfree.com. New stores are often more willing to cooperate if you let them know personally beforehand that you want to submit a claim. 

    What is tax-free shopping? / Shopping tax-free is, in essence, claiming a VAT refund after you have paid the VAT in-store.

    VAT (
    value added tax)  is a consumer tax and varies between 4% and 27% in the EU. It is included in all prices you pay for goods and services.

    You are eligible for a VAT refund if you live outside the EU and if you export the goods to your country of origin. A VAT refund is only possible over goods, not services.

    The VAT is included in the purchase price. You therefore pay it in the store when you buy goods and you claim it back afterwards.
    What if I was not able to get a stamp? /

    If you are/were not able to get a stamp:

    1. Call the customs 24/7 helpline
      Customs officers are present at the airport 24/7. Most customs desks show a telephone number which you can call outside of opening hours. Customs officers will come down to stamp your receipts. If you're not sure, ask the airport information desk for more information.

      Information about customs at Schiphol can be found here.

    2. Declare your goods at your non-EU airport of arrival
      You can 'declare your goods' and get a stamp which proves your items have been imported into a country outside the EU. These offices are located between the bagage claim belts and the exit. You might be asked to pay import taxes and duties.

    3. Visit an embassy or consulate in your non-EU country of arrival
      You can go to the embassy of the EU country you departed from or the embassy of the country where you bought your goods. Call the embassy first to ask if they can help. Some embassies will direct you to a customs department. Bring the following with you:

      • tax-free form
      • purchase receipt
      • purchased items
      • flight itinerary showing when you exited the EU
      • passport
      • if you have an EU passport; another non-EU official government document proving you life outside the EU (visa, work-permit, residence-permit, etc)


    Please note that without a stamp from customs, we can't process your claim. No stamp = No refundThe tax-administration does not allow us to process claims without proof of export from customs, no matter what the reason was if you were not able to get a stamp. Processing a claim without a stamp can result in high fines for our company and the store. We kindly ask for your understanding in this matter.

    How do I know you have received my receipts? /

    When we have received and processed your original stamped receipts at our office, we will notify you in the message center of the app and by email.

    You can also keep an eye on the status of your receipts by logging in to your account and going to the 'my receipts' page. When we have received and processed your original receipts, your receipt status will change from 'waiting for originals' to 'waiting for visual validation'. This means we are in the process of checking and approving your receipt.

    What is your address for postal mail? /

    Before sending mail:

    1. Make pictures of your receipts
      Make a good quality picture of the entire receipt with the customs stamp visible. If something happens to your post, we'll still be able to help you with your pictures.

    2. Write your registration nr. on your receipt
      This will help us process your mail. 
      Register your receipt in your account to receive a registration number. After registration, your receipt number can be found on your 'my receipts' page or your email inbox.


    Address for regular mail / national postal services

    Address for courier mail (DHL, FedEx, UPS, etc.)
    vatfree.com
    att: Web
    P.O. Box 37234
    1030 AE Amsterdam
    The Netherlands

    vatfree.com / Andeloe
    De Clercqstraat 99-2
    1053 AH Amsterdam
    The Netherlands

    Telephone number: +3188 828 37 33

    Please note:
    To avoid unnecessary customs clearance costs,
    make sure to put the value 
    of the contents on your envelope/package on '€0.'


    Where can I find copies of my customers receipts? /

    In every invoice email we send you, you can find a link to your personal store portal. In your personal shop portal you can find an overview of all your open and paid invoices.

    On every invoice page you will find two PDF files:

    1. Your invoice

    2. Image scans of your customers original receipts and their tax-free forms

    We advise you to bookmark your shop portal so you can access your documents at all times.

    What if my store has run out of tax-free envelopes and forms? /

    Tax-free forms can be downloaded here:

    Information leaflets and window stickers can be ordered free of cost via email:

    Please provide your store name and address. As soon as we have received your request your order will be packed and mailed or dropped off at your store.

    I need to send my receipt by post, but what if my receipt is also my warranty? /

    Many shops will print a different warranty receipt that it is not part of the purchase receipt. If you don't receive a second warranty receipt from the store, please make a copy/photo of the receipt or have a copy of the receipt stamped at EU-Customs so you can keep the original (customs will only stamp a copy if you can show them the original at the same time).

    What is your service fee? /

    We guarantee the highest refund in the Tax-Free market and we're proud of it! If you find a lower service fee somewhere else, let us know and we'll adjust the refund amount for you. 


    ✅ Use our Refund Calculator to see exactly how much you get back with Vatfree.com.


    We charge a service fee of 28% of the VAT on your purchase receipt, with a minimum of €2,50 and a maximum of €80,- per receipt. 


    Example1Example 2
    Total purchase amount
    (incl. VAT)
    €121,-
     €2500,-
    VAT amount€21,-
    €433,88
    Service fee
    (28% of the VAT, max. €80,-)


    €5,88-
    €80,-
    Refund€15,12
    353,88


    ⚠️ Additional transaction costs might be charged depending on which payment option you choose.

    We work on a no-cure no-pay basis; we only charge a fee when the store refunds your VAT.


    Frequently Asked Questions
    What if I find a lower service fee somewhere else?
    How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies?
    Vatfree.com Refund Calculator
    Are there any additional transaction costs?


    Do I need to use a postal stamp? /

    Yes, please always use a postal stamp on your envelope.

    You can find our address here.

    International students and expats living in the EU /

    If you're an international student or expat staying in the EU for six months or less, you are eligible for a VAT refund.

    If you are staying in the EU longer than six months you can get a refund when you permanently leave the EU. To get a VAT refund you need to de-register from city hall. You will receive a confirmation of your de-registration for customs, to get proof of export.

    Please note;

    Can you return/forward my receipt to me? /

    We can not return your original receipt or forward it to another company.

    Please only send your receipts in the post if the app tells you to do so. Not sure? Contact us: [email protected].

    Before you send your receipts in the post, please 
    check our shopping guide first to determine wether a store will cooperate with refunding your VAT via vatfree.com.

    Our
    terms and conditions (article 8) and our shopping guide mention that we are unable to return or forward original receipts to customers, uncooperative stores or competitors. This would become very costly and time consuming, especially since we do not charge a service fee for receipts and the corresponding VAT amount in when they are not refunded by the store.

    If you need your receipt for warranty reasons, ask the store to print a copy of the receipt which you can use for that purpose. Often they will provide this automatically during purchase. Always ask to be sure.

    Do you pay me automatically? /

    We do not pay you automatically. The payment option will become available after a store has processed your claim. When we receive your VAT from the store, we'll inform you immediately via email and the app. 

    You can request payment via the 'My receipts' page in your account. Select the green 'Payout refunds' button to start the payment process. 

    Information about your payment date can be found here.


    What is your service fee? /

    We guarantee the highest refund in the Tax-Free market and we're proud of it! If you find a lower service fee somewhere else, let us know and we'll adjust the refund amount for you. 


    ✅ Use our Refund Calculator to see exactly how much you get back with Vatfree.com.


    We charge a service fee of 28% of the VAT on your purchase receipt, with a minimum of €2,50 and a maximum of €80,- per receipt. 


    Example1Example 2
    Total purchase amount
    (incl. VAT)
    €121,-
     €2500,-
    VAT amount€21,-
    €433,88
    Service fee
    (28% of the VAT, max. €80,-)


    €5,88-
    €80,-
    Refund€15,12
    353,88


    ⚠️ Additional transaction costs might be charged depending on which payment option you choose.

    We work on a no-cure no-pay basis; we only charge a fee when the store refunds your VAT.



    Frequently Asked Questions
    What if I find a lower service fee somewhere else?
    How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies?
    Vatfree.com Refund Calculator
    Are there any additional transaction costs?

    Where can I get a customs stamp? - Airplane /

    

    1. At your EU airport of departure
      Customs desks are available at all EU airports 24/7. Follow the signs for customs or ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction. If the customs desk is closed there is usually a telephone number displayed on the desk which you can call outside of opening hours. A customs employee will come down to the desk to stamp your receipts.

      You can also view our airports and customs guide here. 

    2. Declare your goods at your non-EU airport of arrival
      You can 'declare your goods' and get a stamp which proves your items have been imported into a country outside the EU. These offices are located between the bagage claim belts and the exit. You might be asked to pay import taxes and duties.

    3. Visit an embassy or consulate in your non-EU country of arrival
      You can go to the embassy of the EU country you departed from or the embassy of the country where you bought your goods. Call the embassy first to ask if they can help. Some embassies will direct you to a customs department. Bring the following with you:

      • Tax-Free form
      • purchase receipt
      • purchased items
      • flight itinerary showing when you exited the EU
      • passport
      • if you have an EU passport; another non-EU official government document proving you life outside the EU (visa, work-permit, residence-permit, etc)


    No stamp = No refund 

    Please note that without a stamp from customs, we can't process your claim. EU Tax Administrations do not allow us to process claims without proof of export from customs. Processing a claim without a stamp can result in high fines for our company and stores. We kindly ask for your understanding in this matter.


    Frequently Asked Questions
    Do my items need to stay in their original packaging?


    Can I work with Vatfree.com if I am already partnered with a different Tax-Free company? /

    Yes, you can, and we encourage you to do so, for compliance purposes and to improve your customer journey. EU law states a 0% VAT rate applies to exported goods. Customers working for NATO and certain other EU institutions are also exempt. VAT should be refunded directly to the customer or his/her representative.  You may promote a tax-free company in-store, but you may not impose the use of this company as a condition for refunding VAT. Respecting customers’ freedom of choice and removing disproportionate barriers to obtain a VAT refund contributes to a positive customer journey, strengthens your Brands’ competitive position in the market and ensures you stay compliant with EU law.

    What are the requirements for purchase receipts? /

    In most EU countries, you must provide a proper invoice to Customs to get proof of export, and to the store to get back the VAT. 

    The following information must be visible on your invoice from the store:

    Most stores can provide a proper invoice if you ask for it. Some stores will give you a Tax-Free receipt or Tax-Free form with all the above details included. Tax-Free receipts and Tax-Free forms are valid replacements of a proper invoice and are accepted by all Customs departments in the EU.

    If the store can't print a proper invoice and doesn't have Tax-Free receipts or forms, you can download one here. Attach it to your purchase documents from the store when you go to Customs.

    Please check our country guide to see the Customs rules per EU country.


      

    What if I have receipts with a purchase amount lower than the minimum spend amount? /

    In general, we can not process receipts if the minimum spend threshold has not been met.


    There is one exception:

    If you have multiple receipts, from the same store and same day, you are allowed to combine your receipt with a low purchase amount with your other receipt from the same store and same day. The total purchase amount of the receipts combined must be higher than the minimum spend amount.


    What if a store does not want to cooperate? /

    European Union tax law states that a 0% VAT rate applies to exported goods. NATO employees and persons working for exempt EU institutions benefit from 0% VAT rates as well. If you meet all the requirements and export has been confirmed by customs, the store should refund the VAT which was paid when you purchased the goods.


    Unfortunately, some stores don't cooperate. Either because they don't understand the regulation, the administrative procedures involved or because they have an exclusive contract with a different tax-free company. These reasons are legally invalid for rejection of your claim.

    If a store doesn't want to cooperate, there are 2 things you can do:

    1. Contact the store personally They might be willing to help out if you contact them personally. You can do so via social media or email. Ask us for an email address if you can't find one, and CC or tag us in your message so we can assist.
    2. Take legal action
      We can take legal action for you. All legal costs are paid for by us. To do so, please register your receipt, sign a Power of Attorney and send it to [email protected]. After notifying the store about legal action, they might quickly refund your VAT. If not, court proceedings can take a year or longer to complete. We'll keep you updated along the way.


    Why do I need a customs stamp/proof of export? /

    Having proof of export/VAT exemption provided by a customs or tax department is a legal requirement for submitting and processing VAT refund claims. This requirement has been set by EU government(s) and is enforced by tax administrations in all EU countries.

    Please note that without proof of export provided by a customs or tax department, we can't process your claim. No proof of export = No refundTax administrations do not allow us and stores to process claims without proof of export, no matter what the circumstances were. Processing a claim without proof of export from customs can result in high fines for our company and the store. We kindly ask for your understanding in this matter.

    What documents do I need for items exported via ocean freighter? /

    Your name and an invoice/order/transaction number from the store is mandatory information and must be included on your documents. Without this information we can't process your claim.

    Tip: Contact your shipper and ask them to include this information on your customs documents. They don't always do so automatically. To help them avoid making mistakes, send a list of store names and invoice/order/transaction numbers.


    Mandatory customs documents

    Notes

    1. EX-A document 

    2. Confirmation of Exit

    These are official EU customs documents and are required as proof of export.

    Mandatory details

    Notes

    • Your name

    • Receipt/invoice number from the store


    These details prove that your specific items were exported.

    If the above mentioned details are not visible on your customs documents, you can submit the following documents from your shipper as support:


    Supporting documents (not mandatory)

    Notes

    1. Import documents from non-EU customs

    2. Bill of lading from your shipper

    3. Invoice from your shipper

    4. Packing list from your shipper

    If your EU customs documents are incomplete, you can submit these documents as additional support.

    Mandatory details

    Notes

    • Your name

    • Receipt/invoice number from the store


    Without these details on (at least 1) of your supporting documents we can't process your claim.


     

    Where can I get a customs stamp? - Train /

    Information about Amsterdam Central Station can be found here.

    The locations of customs desks and officers can vary per train station and are frequently subject to change.

    Customs can be present;

    Please contact the station and customer support of your train operator well in advance before your departure date to find out where you have to go to get a stamp. We also accept stamps from your non-EU station of arrival and European embassies.

    Please note; without a stamp from customs we can't process your claim.

    I receive an error while trying to upload documents in the app. What now? /

    If you're having trouble uploading images/documents to the app you can try the following:

    1. Update your app (look for updates in your app-store). If the app is not updated some features don't the way they are supposed to. 

    2. Log in to your account via a browser on your computer instead of via the app. Often, if a feature is not working properly in the app, it will work in a browser. When logging in via the website instead of via app, make sure to use the same email address, password or login service you used to login via the app.

    3. Let us know by email ([email protected]) that you're having trouble and add your documents in the attachments. We'll upload them to your account for you.
    Do you have an office at Schiphol airport? / As a fully digital company, we can no longer justify the high operational costs of having an office in Schiphol (rent, concession costs, staff, safety etc.). This translates into faster and safer handling of your receipts, fewer queues and a higher refund amount for you!

    If you wish to submit your receipts for a VAT refund from Schiphol airport, please deposit your envelope with original stamped receipts in the orange mailbox located across the hall from customs. This is a mailbox belonging to the Dutch national postal (Postnl) service. If (in departure hall 3) you deposit your envelope with receipts in this mailbox, your receipts will arrive at our office in safe and good order.

    Read more on our page about Schiphol How do I register a new store in your shopping guide? /

    If the store where you shopped is not listed or has a white logo in our guide, this means that they have never refunded VAT via vatfree.com before. Feel free to register the new store (instructions below) and your receipt. We'll contact them and negotiate a refund on your behalf. If they don't want to cooperate we won't charge a fee. 

    We advise you to contact new stores directly first. Cc us in your message to the store so we can assist. A short message is sufficient, just to let them know you wish to submit a claim via vatfree.com. New stores are often more willing to cooperate if you let them know personally beforehand that you want to submit a claim. 


     

    You need to be logged in to your account to add a new store to our system. When logged in, follow the steps below:

    1. At the bottom of the screen, select the round button 'add receipt'

    2. Select the button 'Click here to search shop'

    3. In the search bar, enter the store name and address. When no store is found, select the lower option; 'Add new shop'

    4. In the search bar above the map, enter the store name and address. Select the store in the results. At the bottom of the page click the button 'Add shop.


    Congratulations! You've added the store to our shopping guide!

    How long before my receipts arrive at your office? /

    Mail is delivered to our office once a week. Afterward, it can take up to two weeks to register all receipts we have received. Therefore, it can sometimes take up to three (3) weeks in total before your receipts are marked as 'received' in your account

    When we have received and processed your original receipts, we'll notify you by email and the messages page in the app.

    You can also keep an eye on the receipt statuson your receipt page. When we have received and processed your originals, your receipt status will change from 'waiting for originals' to 'waiting for visual validation'. This means we're in the process of checking and approving your documents.

    If you still haven't heard from us 3 weeks after your receipts should have arrived, please let us know via [email protected].

    Do I have to use my own bank account? /

    No, you do not need to use your own bank account to receive your refund. You can also use the bank account of a family member or friend, or you can donate your refund to an NGO

    Can you donate my refund to an NGO? /

    Yes, we are more than happy to transfer your refund as a donation to an NGO like the Red Cross, Wildlife Protection (WNF) or a project of your choice. 

    If you are interested in donating, you can simply fill in the details below during the request of your payment. To donate to a project of your choice, find their bank details online and submit them during the request of your payment.


    Red Cross:

    Wildlife Protection WNF (Wereld Natuur Fonds):

    When will you pay my refund? /

    As soon as we have received and approved your documents, the expected refund date becomes visible on your receipt page.



    The timeframe for refund depends on the store. E
    ach store has different payment processes and terms. The average processing time is 30 days. Some stores pay within a day, others within 1 week, 14 days, 30 days, 60 days and a few even ask for 90 days. 


    The expected refund date on your receipt page
    is a prediction based on the average amount of days it has taken a particular store to process claims in the past. Payments can come in earlier and later than expected.

    If a store has not paid within 2 weeks after the expected refund date, ask for an update via [email protected]

    As soon as we have received your VAT we'll notify you by email automatically

    You can find out how to request payment here.


    Do I need to send my original receipts by the post? /

    Don't worry! In most cases you don't need to send original documents by post.
    There are some exceptions. Check your receipt status on your receipt page. Is your receipt status 'waiting for original'? Then we need to receive your originals by post. If you're not sure whether your receipt needs to be posted, please contact us by email ([email protected]).  Always make photos/scans of your receipts before you send them in the post. Our address for postal mail can be found here.

    Where is the vatfree.com mailbox at the airport? /

    Vatfree.com does not have special tax-free mailboxes at the airport. If we have asked you to mail your documents and you want to do so from the airport, please use a mailbox of the national regular postal service. Mailboxes of regular postal services can be found at different locations at the airport. If you are having difficulty finding a mailbox please ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction.

    At Schiphol, Amsterdam airport you can use the orange mailboxes. There is an orange mailbox located across the hall from customs. 

    Don't forget to include your contact details and registration numbers. Use a proper envelope and a postal stamp.

    Instead of wasting paper and trees, and to cut costs for lower service fees, we prefer to work completely digitally. We therefore don't have desks and mailboxes at the airport. In return, our partner stores generally no longer require you to submit original documents via post which means less hassle for you! They therefor no longer provide envelopes in-store. 

    What if I don't want to share a copy of my passport? /

    The Dutch tax administration obligates us to store a copy of your passport. If we do not store a copy of your passport we (and the store) risk receiving large fines due to an incomplete administration. We kindly ask for your understanding in this matter.

    If you don't want to share a copy of your passport we can make an exception for you if you file a complaint against the Dutch tax administration. You can file a complaint here. Don't forget to send us your complaint form by email ([email protected]) so we can verify your account.

    Filing a complaint against the tax administration does not effect you as a traveller to the Netherlands or Europe. It is standard and accepted procedure.

    Don't want to file a complaint against the tax administration? Check out our guide on how to safely share the copy of your passport. We give you tips on how to block your sensitive information. This makes identity theft with the copy of your passport extremely difficult and unlikely to occur.

    Is there a fee for Retail partners? /

    You can become a Vatfree.com retail partner free of charge. We don't ask a registration fee and our core services are free. 

    Free services include: 

    Paid services include:

    How can I become a Vatfree.com retail partner? /

    You can register online for free here. 

    Have any questions? Don't hesitate to contact us.

    Email: [email protected] 
    Telephone:+31 88 828 37 33

    Frequently Asked Questions
    Is there a fee for retail partners?

     

    What is your service fee for my customers? /

    For you as a retailer, our services are free. Your customer pays a fee. We guarantee the highest refund in the Tax-Free market, and we're proud of it! 


    ✅ Use our Refund Calculator to see exactly how much your customers get back.

    Our fee structure is simple:


    For every store and receipt, we charge a standard fee of 28% of the VAT with a maximum of 80 EUR per receipt. 


    A maximum fee is unique in the Tax-Free market. With big purchases and VAT amounts, our max. fee can save your customers hundreds of € compared to refunds from competitors. 

    Frequently Asked Questions
    Vatfree.com Refund Calculator
    Are there any additional transaction costs?
    Why do my customers pay a service fee?
    How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies?

    I have a question about my invoice! /

    For questions about your invoice, please contact:

    Email | [email protected]

    Telephone | +31 (0) 88 828 37 33

    How do I know my customer has exported his/her goods? /

    Vatfree.com receives and verifies all required documents for confirmation that your customer is eligible to shop Tax-Free and that export has been confirmed by Customs. 

    Customers are eligible for a VAT refund if:

    1. They are permanent resident of a non-EU country (only applicable in case of exports via hand luggage)
    2. They bought items for a minimum amount per invoice/receipt (or per shop per day)
    3. They export the items unused before the end of the 3rd month after purchase


    If a customer is eligible, customs provide confirmation of export in the form of a stamp or digital export documents.


    Customs checks:


    Vatfree.com checks: 


    If all documentation is compliant and export of the goods has been confirmed by Customs and checked by Vatfree.com, we send you a request for VAT refund.

    Which bank accounts can be submitted for the IBAN/SEPA payment method? /

    IBAN/SEPA bank accounts from the below mentioned countries can be submitted for our IBAN/SEPA payment method. If your country is not included in the below mentioned list, please select a different payment method.

    Country

     

    Currency

    Belgium

     

    EUR

    Bulgaria

     

    BGN

    Cyprus

     

    EUR

    Denmark

     

    DKK

    Germany

     

    EUR

    Estonia

     

    EUR

    Finland

     

    EUR

    France, including French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Réunion

     

    EUR

    Greece

     

    EUR

    Guernsey

     

    GBP

    Hungary

     

    HUF

    Ireland

     

    EUR

    Iceland

     

    ISK

    Isle of Man

     

    GBP

    Itally

     

    EUR

    Jersey

     

    GBP

    Croatia

     

    HRK

    latvia

     

    EUR

    Liechtenstein

     

    CHF

    Lithuania

     

    EUR

    Luxembourg

     

    EUR

    Malta

     

    EUR

    Monaco

     

    EUR

    Netherlands

     

    EUR

    Norway

     

    NOK

    Austria

     

    EUR

    Poland

     

    PLN

    Portugal, including the Azores and Madeira

     

    EUR

    Romania

     

    RON

    San Marino

     

    EUR

    Slovenia

     

    EUR

    Slovakia

     

    EUR

    Spain, including the Canary Islands, Ceuta en Melilla

     

    EUR

    Czech Republic

     

    CZK


    Sweden

     

    SEK

    Switzerland

     

    CHF

    Can I process claims for receipts issued in a previous fiscal year? /

    Yes, you can. Information and instructions for admin and VAT-return / tax-administrative processes can be found here:


    Netherlands

    English / Dutch                           

    Ireland

    English

    What if my customers items were delivered to an EU address? /

    The delivery address of your customers' items is irrelevant for a VAT refund. Relevant for refunding VAT is proof of export to a country outside the EU, obtained from European customs department. Alternatively, proof of import from Customs of a non-EU country is also accepted.

    If export of the goods has been confirmed by Customs, a 0% VAT rate applies to the sale and you are required to refund any VAT that was paid at the time of sale.

    You can read more about export and customs procedures here.

    Is there a minimum amount I need to spend? /

    In most European countries, there is a minimum spend requirement for receipts, to be eligible for a VAT refund. This minimum spend threshold differs per country. You can check the list of EU-countries with their minimum spend thresholds below to determine if your receipt can be submitted for a VAT refund:
     

    Country Minimum spend threshold
    in local currency
       
    Belgium 125,01 EUR
    Bulgaria  0
    Cyprus 50,- CYP
    Denmark 300,- DDK
    Germany 50.01 EUR
    Estonia 38,- EUR
    Finland 40,- EUR
    France 100 EUR
    Greece 50,- EUR
    Hungary 50000 HUF
    Ireland -
    Italy 70 EUR
    Croatia 740 HRK
    Latvia 30,26 LVL
    Lithuania 200,- LTL
    Luxembourg 74,- EUR
    Malta 50 EUR
    The Netherlands 50,- EUR
    Austria 75,01 EUR
    Poland 200,- PLN
    Portugal 60,- EUR
    Romania 250,- RON
    Slovakia 175,- EUR
    Slovenia 50,- EUR
    Spain 90,50 EUR
    Czech Republic -
    Sweden 200,- SEK
     
    Why do you need a copy of my passport and/or visa? /

    The Tax Administration requires us to store a copy of your passport for VAT compliance purposes.

    Without the copy of your passport we are not allowed to process your claim. After we have received and checked the copy of your passport we can forward your claim to the store for processing.

    You can read about how to safely share a copy of your passport and how we protect your identity here.

    EU passport holders: If you have a EU passport, you're required to provide a copy of another document issued by a non-EU country, as proof that you live outside the EU.

    The following documents are accepted as proof of non-EU residence:

    How can I find my Alipay ID? /

    1. Go to 'Me' on your home screen


    2. Go to 'Settings' in your 'Me' screen



    3. Go to 'Security setting' on your 'Settings' page



    4. Check your phone number on your 'Security setting' page. Your phone number is your Alipay ID.

    Where do I submit a claim for items exported via ocean freighter? /

    You can find out which documents you need to submit here.

    In your account, please register your claim as items that have been exported by a shipping company (ocean freighter). Follow the steps below:


    1. Go to the 'My receipts' page in your account

     


    2. Click the green button 'Add new receipt'


     
     

    3. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click the blue text 'Click here to start the CARGO process'


     

    4. Select the icon 'By a shipping company'

     



    VAT refunds - admin and tax-returns /

    Information and instructions for admin and VAT-return / tax-administrative processes can be found here:


    Netherlands

    English / Dutch                           

    Ireland

    English

    Madrid Barajas Airport, Spain /


    Customs system
    • Manual, wet stamp, customs desk (Spanish and other EU stores)
    • Digital terminal (DIVA), barcode scan
    Minimum Spend threshold0 / no minimum for Spanish stores
    Minimum spend threshold's for other countries can be found here
    Customs locations and opening hoursTerminal T1, Floor 1 (Check-in)
    Open from 07.00 - 22.00

    Terminal T4 Satellite, Floor 2 (Boarding area)
    Open 24 hours

    Terminal T4, Floor 2 (Departures)
    Open from 07.00 - 22.00
    Contact details                             
    Information points (staff members with green jackets)

    Phone: +34 91 321 10 00 / +34 902 404 704

    Email: [email protected]

    Required documentation for customs
    • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
    • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
    • Purchased items
    • Passport
    • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
    • Boarding pass


    Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, France /
    Customs system

    In France, you can get proof of export at digital Tax-Free (Détaxe) machines. The machine will ask you to scan the Tax-Free form which you received from the store. You can find these machines at every international airport in France. They’re usually located before check-in, in international departure halls.

    If the Tax-Free machine is not working or you’re departing from another EU country, go to a manual Customs desk for an export stamp. You can ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction.

    Minimum Spend thresholdEUR 100 per store per day
    Minimum spend threshold's for other countries can be found here
    Customs locations and opening hours

    Terminal 1 (CDGVAL Level, Hall 6)
    Open during flight operation hours

    Terminal 2E (Departures Level, Exit 8)
    Open during flight operation hours

    Terminal 2F (Arrivals Level, Exit 10)
    Open during flight operation hours

    Terminal 3 (Departures, after passport control)
    Open during flight operation hours

    Contact details                             

    Phone: +33 172 407 850 

    Required for French customs
    • French stores: a tax-free form received from the French store is mandatory, so don't forget to ask for one when purchasing your goods. Without a Tax-Free form from the store, you can't get back the VAT.
    • Stores from other EU countries: standard tax-free form 
    • Any other purchase documents received from the store
    • Purchased items
    • Passport
    • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
    • Boarding pass
    London Heathrow Airport, United Kingdom /

    Until further notice: the UK has decided to not offer the VAT refund option to tourists visiting upon leaving the EU. More info can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/tax-on-shopping/taxfree-shopping 



    GOV.UK

    Tax on shopping and services

    VAT and other taxes on shopping and services, including tax-free shopping, energy-saving equipment and mobility aids.


    How does Tax-Free shopping work in my store? /

    REGULAR CASH REGISTER SYSTEM

    Step 1

    Give your customer a regular receipt or purchase invoice including their name, non-EU country of residence and passport number. If you're not able to provide this in-store, you can also send an invoice with buyer details to the customer via email, or you can give your customer a Tax-Free form.

    Step 2

    Give your customer a Vatfree.com information folder. The folder will explain to them what to do.

    Step 3

    Incase your customer still has questions feel free to take a look at our FAQs or provide our contact details:



    STORES USING THE VATFREE.COM APP FOR POS (POPr)

    Step 1

    On your cash register system, select the option to print a Tax-Free receipt.

    Step 2

    Give your customer a Vatfree.com information folder. The folder will explain to customers what to do.

    Step 3

    Incase your customer still has questions feel free to take a look at our FAQs or provide our contact details:



    STORES USING THE VATFREE.COM RETAIL APP (POPr light)

    Step 1

    As usual, print a receipt or invoice for your customer.

    Step 2

    Open the Vatfree.com In-Store app ➤ insert the total purchase amount ➤ insert your customers' email address ➤ press 'register' Give your customer a vatfree.com information folder. The folder will explain to them what to do.

    Step 3

    Incase your customer still has questions feel free to take a look at our FAQs or provide our contact details:




    Customer Frequently Asked Questions:



    Where is the post office at Schiphol airport? /

    Post office:
    You can buy envelopes and postal stamps in the shop 'Service Point Schiphol Plaza'.

    Find 'Service Point Schiphol Plaza' on the map here.
    Service Point is located at the arrivals level, between arrivals 3 and 4, next to the shop 'Rituals'.
    Open 7.00-22.00 daily.


    Mail Drops (orange postal boxes):


    Can I submit receipts/forms from other Tax-Free companies (Global Blue, Innova, Premier, etc)? /

    Yes, you can submit Tax-Free forms and receipts from other Tax-Free companies, like Global Blue, Innova Tax-Free, Premiere Taxfree, Planet Payment, Easy Taxfree and so on. 


    Most stores offer customers freedom of choice. They might give you a Tax-Free form or receipt from a specific Tax-Free company, but they allow you to submit it anywhere (also Vatfree.com). 


    Thats fair, since you’re the one paying the service fee!


    Unfortunately, some stores don’t want to process claims if you don’t use the tax-free company promoted in-store. In these cases, we might have to take legal action to retrieve your VAT. 


    ✅ Before you go shopping or submit a claim, check our shopping guide to find out if a store refunds VAT on first request via Vatfree.com. ✅ Tax-free forms and receipts are part of your purchase documents. If you received these from the store, don't forget to upload copies when submitting a claim in your account.


    Frequently Asked Questions

    Can I get a VAT refund from any store?

    What do the coloured logo's in the shopping guide mean?

    How do I register a new store in your shopping guide?


    Brexit: can I shop tax-free in the EU as a UK citizen? /

    Yes! As of 1-1-2021 you are eligible for a VAT refund when shopping in the EU. Welcome to vatfree.com!

    When importing goods into the UK, you might need to pay import duties.

    You can import goods up to £390 (or up to £270 if you arrive by private plane or boat). If you go over this allowance you pay tax and duty on the total value of the goods, not just the value above the allowance. You may have to pay import VAT and customs duty if you exceed your allowance.

    For more information, including about alcohol and tobacco imports, please read this article here.

    Where can I find a copy of my customer's passport? /

    Vatfree.com can share copies of your customer's ID documents on request. Requests for ID documents can be submitted via [email protected].

    Vatfree.com can only share your customer's ID documents if you need them to process a VAT refund claim or in case of fiscal checks by the tax administration. We advise you to only request ID documents in case of fiscal checks. Vatfree.com stores your customers ID document copies in a safe digital environment that protects their privacy. 

    Passport information that is required by the tax administration to process a VAT refund claim (name, country, passport number) is shared with you automatically on your customer's digital tax free form. You can find your customer's digital tax free form in your invoice portal.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vatfree.com is required by the tax-administration to receive and store copies of your customer's ID documents to prove they reside outside the EU and are eligible for a VAT refund. Without a copy of your customer's ID documents, vatfree.com can not send you an invoice for a VAT refund claim.

    During registration with vatfree.com, customers are required to provide the following documents:

    Please note that, in line with GDPR privacy laws, we are obligated to block sensitive details (photo, social security number, signature).

    Where can I find my invoice? /

    Invoices are sent to you via email. In every invoice email you can find a link to your personal invoice portal. Your invoice portal shows an overview of all your open and paid invoices and includes your customers information and documents.

    On every invoice page you can find two PDF files:

    1. Your invoice

    2. Image scans of your customers original receipts and their tax-free forms


    In accordance with privacy laws and regulations, your customers ID documents are not included in your invoice portal. These are stored in a safe environment and can be sent to you on request: [email protected].

    How do I register a claim for goods exported by air (DHL, FedEx, PostNL etc)? /

    If your goods have been exported via air courier (DHL, FedEx, PostNL etc) please register your receipt as a 'cargo' receipt.

    Information about required export documents can be found here.


    1. Add a receipt and choose the option 'register a CARGO receipt'



    2. After filling in your receipt details, choose the option 'By post, sent by the (online) shop'



    3. Upload your 'Confirmation of shipment' and 'POD'. You can find more information about these documents here.



    Corona: is customs still open at Schiphol airport? /

    Currently the customs desk at Schiphol airport is still operating as usual.

    Location: 
    departure hall 3, before the check in desks and passport control.

    Opening hours:
     06:00 – 22:00

    If there is nobody at the desk during opening hours you can call the following number: +31
    881583900

    If you visit the customs after opening hours, you can call the night shift. 
    A customs officer will come down to the customs desk to stamp you receipts. Please call 15 minutes in advance. This service is available 24/7.


    Telephone number for the night shift: +31881583440

    You can also go to customs at the airport in your non-EU homecountry of arrival.


    Last updated 7 Augustus 2020

    Corona: can I still submit a VAT refund claim? /

    Yes, you can still submit a VAT refund claim. However, please note that due to the Coronavirus outbreak there can be a delay in payment and some VAT refunds are no longer guaranteed. For more detailed information please read our Covid-19 statement here.

    Last updated 9 May 2020


    Corona: will I still receive my refund? /
    If the store processes your VAT refund claim you will also receive payment from vatfree.com. However, please note that due to the Coronavirus outbreak there can be a delay in payment from the store and some VAT refunds are no longer guaranteed. For more detailed information please read our Covid-19 statement here.

    Last updated 10 May 2020


    Corona: I'm stuck in the EU and can't get a customs stamp. Now what? /

    Some individuals are currently stuck in the EU due to the Coronavirus outbreak and this prevents them from getting the customs stamp on time

    Currently it is not yet clear wether customs and tax administrations will provide exceptions for these cases. We have contacted the Dutch customs and tax administration and they are aware of the situation. The issue will be discussed internally.

    Currently you are advised to go to customs at your earliest convenience, also if you are already late, and explain your situation to the customs officer. If you have a flight itinerary that shows a booked and missed flight due to flight restrictions please bring this with you to customs.


    The Vatfree.com app on my POS is not working properly. Now what? /

    Are you unable to print Vatfree.com Tax-Free receipts or are you experiencing other problems with the Vatfree.com app on you POS?

    Please contact us:

    Where can I upload a copy of my passport? /

    To upload a copy of your passport, you need to be logged in to your account. You can upload a copy of your passport on your account page. 

    When you are logged in via the app and on your account page, scroll down to upload a copy of your passport:



    When you are logged in via the website and on your account page, you can upload a copy of your passport on the right side of the page:



    My receipt has been rejected. What now? /

    First, check the email we sent you to let you know your receipt has been rejected. In this email we let you know why your receipt has been rejected and what you can do to fix it.

    If your receipt can be re-opened for submission you will see a blue button on your receipt page 're-open receipt for submission'. Click this button to re-open your receipt, to add any missing documents.



    If you do not see any button to re-open your receipt for submission, let us know by email and we will check if we can help you further.

    Where can I add a copy of my boarding pass? /

    You can add a copy of your boarding pass when you're registering a receipt. You will see an option to upload the copy of your boarding pass. You can also upload a copy of your flight itinerary instead.

    Make sure your name and date of exit from the EU are clearly visible.


    Can I submit a VAT refund claim for my company? /

    No. Companies can not submit VAT refund claims via vatfree.com. If you want to submit a VAT refund claim via vatfree.com you can only do so as a private person. 

    The tax administration does not allow us to process business claims. To comply fully with tax-administration requirements we therefor can not process receipts and invoices showing company names and/or VAT numbers (other than those of the seller). 

    Are you buying for a European business? More information about VAT refunds for European businesses can be found here:

    You may also contact your local tax-administration, tax-advisor and/or accountant for help and information about how to submit a claim.  

    Why vatfree.com? /

    Our mission is to help travellers easily shop tax-free at stores and brands that love them back.

    To do that we offer the easiest online and mobile service, to the most diverse group of customers, for the highest refund guaranteed.

    Why mobile?
     With airports requesting travellers to show up at least three hours before their flight, and safety procedures taking up a lot of time, most travellers have little time left to arrange getting a Customs validation stamp on their receipts. Standing in line at Customs may take up to half an hour or more. Being required to then stand in line at a desk for a cash refund, can increase the time of this entire process to an hour or more. Time is spare so we built the first ever tax-free shopping app in 2016, so travellers can finalise the refund claim once they find a spare moment, on the plane home or in the comfort of their own house.

    Why diverse? We are the first and only tax-free shopping service founded by travellers, specifically for travellers, with a main focus on travellers' needs. Our service therefore ranges from helping a range of travellers from tourists, cruise passengers, military staff, expats and international students. We also are able to help travellers get back VAT over shopping made online, offline, cross border, over purchases charged with low as well as high VAT rates at shops that are either listed in our shopping guide as well as not listed and new to us.

    Why the highest refund guaranteed? The most common feedback we get from travellers is that they feel uncomfortable being subjected to high fees for claiming back Value Added Tax they are entitled to. Especially after having to go through so much effort to arrange the refund. We get that. Regulation states that when exporting goods to a non-EU country, you do not have to pay VAT. For travellers to claim back the initial paid VAT, they have to stand in line at Customs, before flying back home, to get proof of the export. This can be quite stressful, take up quite some time and in some occasions even lead to missing out if queues are long and you have to catch a plane. Once the stamp is collected, the only way to claim back VAT is to contact the shop. If the shop is unwilling to cooperate, charges high fees (with or without a tax-free partner) or just takes a long time to process it all, this leads to disappointment and a feeling of dispair. Traditional tax-free shopping companies charge fees varying from 35% to 50% of the VAT amount and are only an option if shops are affiliated. We decided to use today's technology to create an open platform for all shops to easily join, without necessary contracts, and to minimise costs in such a way that we can continue to offer the highest possible refund. Our service fee starts at €2,50 per receipt with a maximum of €80. With this we hope to have helped retailers and shops as well as we believe a happy customer is a customer for life.

    We would love you to join us and list your shop(s) in our shopping guide free of charge: click here to join.

    Download your Tax-Free form here /

    Whether you need a Tax-Free form depends on the Customs rules of the EU country you're departing from. Different rules apply in different countries.

    Good to know:

    ✅ Check our country guide to see the Customs rules per EU country

    ✅ In most EU countries, Customs requires an invoice which meets the requirements for a VAT refund

    ✅ Many stores will give you a Tax-Free receipt or Tax-Free form as a replacement of an invoice. Tax-Free receipts and Tax-Free forms are valid replacements and are accepted by all Customs departments in the EU 

    ✅ If the store can't print a proper invoice and doesn't have Tax-Free receipts or forms, you can download one here. Attach it to your purchase documents from the store.

    ⚠️ Received Tax-Free receipts and Tax-Free forms from a different Tax Refund company (other than Vatfree.com)? Check our shopping guide to confirm you can submit them via Vatfree.com

    ⚠️ In Spain and France, Customs want a Tax-Free form issued specifically by the store. The VAT is refunded by the Tax Refund Operator visible on the form. You can't print your own Tax-Free form. Without a form from the store, you can't get back the VAT. 


    DOWNLOAD TAX-FREE FORM













    Amsterdam Central Train Station, The Netherlands /

    At Amsterdam Central Station, you can get a stamp when going though security/passport control on the Eurostar Amsterdam-London platform 15b.

    After arriving on platform 15b, go to the Eurostar Departures building on the far end of the platform for a ticket check. After your ticket has been checked you can get a customs stamp at security/passport check. Ask an employee to point you in the right direction.

    We advise you to be present at platform 15b around 60 minutes before departure. Ticket checks close 30 minutes before departure. 







    Can I get a cash refund at the airport? /

    Our service is fully digital which means we can't pay your refund in cash.

    You can find our list of payment options here.

    EU-based diplomats: where can I get proof of VAT exemption / a tax-free form? /

    If you are a member of a diplomatic mission or consular post based in the EU, you need a certificate of VAT exemption (151 form) to get a VAT refund. Please contact your institution's tax department for more information about where to get a form.


    ⚠️ British Diplomats can not get back VAT on purchases made in Belgium

    Vice versa, Belgian Diplomats can not get back VAT on purchases made in the UK. For more information please contact [email protected].


    ⚠️ For items purchased in Belgian stores:

    You must contact a Tax-Refund Operator licensed by the Belgian Ministry of Finance to process VAT refund claims for Diplomatic purchases. Licensed parties include Nuvoni and Forax.


    ✅ Individuals working at VAT-exempt institutions in the Netherlands: 

    Certificates for VAT exemption for individuals working at VAT-exempt institutions in the Netherlands can be obtained from Team IFB. Email: [email protected] 

    Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, The Netherlands /


    Customs system
    • Customs desk (manual stamp - for receipts from Dutch stores and stores in EU countries)
    • Digital Customs Machine (barcode scan - only for receipts from Dutch stores)
    Minimum Spend threshold€50,- per store per day for Dutch stores
    Minimum spend threshold's for stores in other EU countries can be found here
    Customs locations and opening hours

    Departure hall 3 (before check-in and security)
    Desk open from 06:00 – 22:00 Customs officers are present at the airport 24/7 If the desk is closed, you can contact customs via the numbers mentioned below (also displayed on the customs desk). A customs officer will come down to the desk to stamp your receipts.

    Contact details                             

    Phone: +31881583900 (during the day - 06:00 - 22:30)
               +31881583440 (at night - 22:30 - 06:00) 

    Required documentation for customs
    • Any purchase document showing your name, non-EU country of residence and passport number (can be a regular receipt, invoice or Tax-Free form)
    • Purchased items
    • Passport
    • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
    • Boarding pass
    Where do I go customs if I have an EU layover? /

    Please pay attention to your layover time. If you have a layover of 2 hours or more at another EU airport before exiting the EU, customs at Schiphol will not stamp your receipts. They will redirect you to customs at your layover destination.

    You can get a stamp at Schiphol airport if your luggage can be checked in to your final non-EU destination directly. Go to customs before checking in your luggage. A customs employee will accompany you to check in your goods and luggage before stamping your receipts.


    ONLINE → store delivers to EU address → you export via ocean freighter /

    If the online store delivers your items to an address inside the EU first, and after that you export the items via ocean freighter yourself:

    1. Get a correct receipt from the store Your receipt should show your name, passport nr. and non-EU address. You can add this information to the billing address (different than the delivery address) when paying online.

    2. Get proof of export
      Find out which documents you need here.


    3. Create a Vatfree.com account
      You can download our app (Google Play | Apple Store) or create an account via our website.

      Register your receipt in your account and upload copies of your documents.


    After, we'll provide a time-frame for your refund and notify you when your VAT has come in from the store.

    Information about payment methods can be found here.

    ONLINE → store delivers to EU address → you export via airplane, car or train /

    If the online store delivers your items to an address inside the EU and you export the items yourself, via airplane, train or car:

    1. Print your invoice from the store Most online stores send your invoice via email after you have paid.

      Tip: when you pay online, you can usually fill in a delivery address and a billing address. For the billing address, use your non-EU address and insert your passport number in an address line.

      If your invoice does not show your non-EU address and passport number, we advise you to print a tax-free form for customs. This is required in some EU countries (not required in the Netherlands).

      You can download a tax-free form here: https://vatfree-public.s3-eu-central-1.amazonaws.com/faq/idx9RoWguWmC8wvpn-Tax-free%20form.pdf

    2. Get proof of export
      You can find out where to get proof of export here: https://traveller.vatfree.com/faq/embed/aokzr6aGxeXsXTbj4/Where-can-I-get-proof-of-export-VAT-exemption-#faq_aokzr6aGxeXsXTbj4

      After getting proof of export, always make photos/scans of all your documents, especially if you need to send them to our office via post.

    3. Create an account and register your receipt
      You can download our app (Google Play | Apple Store) or create an account via our website.

      Register your receipt in your account. We’ll ask you to upload copies of your documents.


    After completing this process we'll keep you updated by email automatically. We'll provide a time-frame for your refund and we'll notify you when your VAT has come in from the store. Information about payment methods can be found here.

    ONLINE → store delivers directly to non-EU address → exported via ocean freighter /

    If the online store organised delivery and export of your items to an address outside the EU:

    1. Get a correct receipt from the store Your receipt from the store should show your name and non-EU address. Don't forget to add these details to your payment information when checking out your shopping cart and paying online. 

    2. Get proof of export
      Find out which documents you need here. You might need to contact the store to get copies of your export documents.


    3. Create an account and register your claim
      You can download our app (Google Play | Apple Store) or create an account via our website.

      Register your receipt in your account. We’ll ask you to upload copies of your documents.


    After completing this process we'll keep you updated by email automatically. We'll provide a time-frame for your refund and we'll notify you when your VAT has come in from the store. Information about payment methods can be found here.

    ONLINE → store delivers directly to non-EU address → exported via courier (DHL, UPS, FedEX etc) /

    If the online store delivers your items to an address inside the EU first and you then export the items yourself via courier like DHL, UPS, FedEX or another postal forwarding company;

    1. Get a correct receipt from the store Your receipt from the store should show your name and non-EU address. Don't forget to add these details to your payment information when checking out your shopping cart and paying online. 

    2. Get proof of export
      Find out which documents you need here.
      You might need to contact the store to get copies of your export documents.

    3. Create an account and register your claim
      You can download our app (Google Play | Apple Store) or create an account via our website.

      Register your receipt in your account. We’ll ask you to upload copies of your documents.


    After completing this process we'll keep you updated by email automatically. We'll provide a time-frame for your refund and we'll notify you when your VAT has come in from the store. Information about payment methods can be found here.

    What documents do I need for items exported by air (DHL, FedEx, PostNL etc) /

      Your shipping documents must be issued by your shipping company and show sufficient information about your purchase from the store:

      DOCUMENTMANDAORY INFORMATION


      Air Waybill (AWB) 

      or

      Commercial Invoice 



      • Your name
      • Invoice/receipt/transaction number from the store
      • tracking number


      When creating an AWB and invoice for your shipment, you can include the transaction nr. from the store in the sections 'shipment details' and 'full description of goods'


      Proof of Delivery (POD)


      • Your name
      • tracking number


      The proof of delivery can be found on your couriers website with your tracking number. 
      Find out how to get a POD here.


      Non-EU residents /

      You are eligible for a VAT refund if you meet the NEMS-requirements:


      Please note; there are also requirements for purchase receipts.

      Is Vatfree.com available on POS? /

      You can use Vatfree.com for POS if your point-of-sales provider is partnered with Vatfree.com.

      Our current POS Partners include:


      Contact your POS account manager with [email protected] in the cc to activate the Vatfree.com app. Kindly note, some POS companies might charge a small fee for setup and/or monthly data management.

      If your POS company is not included in the list, send your POS account manager an email to ask for an integration setup. Kindly add [email protected] in the cc so we can assist in case they have questions.

      As an alternative to our app for POS, you can also use our In-Store app for iOs and Android, free of charge!



      Can I submit my claim directly to the store? /

      Yes, you can, but most stores won't process your individual claim. Many stores that do process individual claims charge a fee, just like vatfree.com. Why? Because, in order to process VAT refund claims submitted by consumers, stores need to carry out administrative procedures that are more complicated than usual. They also need secure environments to store customer's data and ID documents. Many stores don't know how to do this themselves and don't want to invest time and money into internalising the required know-how. Instead, they prefer to outsource this administration to (you guessed it); tax-free providers like vatfree.com.  Processing claims submitted via vatfree.com isn't only easier for stores, it's also easier for you. After all, it takes a lot of your precious time to submit claims to each individual store and keep track of all that communication. Vatfree.com offers the highest refund in the market. So why not outsource your admin to us, instead of doing it all yourself!

      Why do I pay a service fee? /

      We guarantee the highest refund in the market as our service fees are the lowest. And we're proud of it! If you find a lower service fee somewhere else, let us know and we'll match it, guaranteed. 

      At Vatfree.com, you pay:

      1. Service fee
      2. Transaction costs (can be free, depending on your payment method)

      --------------------------------

      Why do I pay a service fee?

      To process a VAT refund claim, among other things, we need to:

      The costs associated are reflected in our fees.


      It's our mission to get fees close to zero (0).

      We're continuously innovating in order to make that happen. Developing the tech requires funds and getting all stores, Customs departments and Payment Solution Providers on board takes time. 

      In the mean time, we try to offer the lowest service fees as possible and we're proud of that. If you find a lower fee somewhere else, please let us know. We'll match it, guaranteed.


      Frequently Asked Questions:

      What if I find a lower fee somewhere else? 

      What is the Vatfree.com service fee?
      Vatfee.com refund calculator


      NATO Netherlands - Shopping at non-Dutch stores /

      This article applies to NATO military employees stationed in the Netherlands that have bought items in stores outside the Netherlands (but inside the EU)

       

      To submit a VAT refund claim, please follow the steps below:

       

      1. Get a purchase receipt or invoice from the store

      2. Print and fill a 'VAT and Excise Duty Exemption Certificate 151',  two (2) times. One (1) for yourself and one (1) for the tax office. The tax office will not make copies; you have to have both copies with you. Download: GENERAL 151 FORM

        Download: BRUNSSUM 151 FORM

        1. Box 1: Fill in YOUR name & YOUR Netherlands' residence address (ignore Brunssum address)

        2. Box 5: Fill in the store details, description of your items (like on your purchase invoice) and item amounts excluding VAT

        3. Box 2, 3, 4, 6, and 7: will be completed and stamped by an employee at the tax office.

      3. Download our app or create an account via our website and register your receipt. We’ll ask you to upload copies of your documents.




      When this process has been completed, we’ll check your documents and contact the store for your refund. You’ll be notified by email when a store has processed your claim. After receiving notification, payment can be requested by logging in to your account.

       

      Additional remarks:

       

      NATO - Shopping at EU stores /

      If you are stationed in the Netherlands and buying at Dutch stores, please follow instructions here.

       

      To submit a VAT refund claim, please follow the steps below:

       

      1. Get a purchase receipt or invoice from the store

      2. Print and fill a 'VAT and Excise Duty Exemption Certificate 151',  two times.

        One (1) for yourself and one (1) for your NATO base admin/tax office. The tax office will not make copies; you have to have both copies with you.

        Download: GENERAL 151 FORM


        1. Box 1: Fill in YOUR name & YOUR residential address in the EU

        2. Box 5: Fill in the store details, description of your items (like on your purchase invoice) and item amounts excluding VAT

        3. Box 2, 3, 4, 6, and 7: will be completed and stamped by an employee at your NATO base admin/tax office.

      3. Download our app or create an account via our website and register your receipt. We’ll ask you to upload copies of your documents.




      When this process has been completed, we’ll check your documents and contact the store for your refund. You’ll be notified by email when a store has processed your claim. After receiving notification, payment can be requested by logging in to your account.

        

      Additional remarks:

      NATO - Required documents /

      Which documents are required from you will depend on the country and the base you are stationed in/at. Please confirm with your NATO base tax office for more information about the required documents.


      NATO BASE/COMMANDREQUIRED DOCUMENTS

      JFC Brunssum, Netherlands


      Detailed instructions here                                                                                                             

      Most other NATO bases in the EU

      (please contact your NATO base tax office to confirm)

      What is a commercial invoice and where can I get one? /

      To submit a claim for items exported by post (DHL, FedEx, PostNL etc) you don't need a stamp from customs. Instead you'll need to provide three (3) documents. The 'commercial invoice' is one (1) of them.



      EXAMPLE:


      Information about other required documents can be found here.

      What is a Proof of Delivery (POD) and where can I get one? /

      A Proof of Delivery (POD) is a document which the receiver signs when a shipment is delivered in good order and condition. The POD usually contains:

      The POD can be found on your shippers website by using your tracking number. Track your shipment to download your POD here; 


      EXAMPLE:


      Can vatfree.com arrange shipment to a country outside the EU? /

      For shipments from the Netherlands to countries outside the EU, we advise you to contact Morends Logistics.

      Morends is a professional logistics company offering international shipping via sea freighter and air courier (DHL, UPS, FedEx, etc). They w
      ill provide all the required documents for export via ocean and air.


      Please contact Morends for information about shipping costs. Shipping costs are to be paid separately to Morends and are not included in the Vatfree.com service fee. 



      What is the (meaning of the) status of my claim? /

      You can find your receipt status in your account by going to your 'my receipts' page and selecting a receipt. The status of your claim is visible in the receipt summary:




      Refund StatusMeaning
      Waiting for customs stamp
      You still need to mark your receipt as ‘stamped by customs’. Select your receipt → upload a photo of your receipt with the customs stamp visible → click the blue button ‘stamped by customs’
      Waiting for traveller verification
      We still need copies of your ID documents before we can continue processing your claim, or your ID documents are still being checked. You can upload your ID documents on your account page. Your ID documents will be checked within 24 hours.
      Send original receipt by post
      We need to receive your original receipt by post in order to process your claim. You can find our postal address here.
      Waiting for visual validation
      We have received and accepted your receipt. It’s now being checked by a member of our staff. Your receipt will be checked within 24 hours.
      Waiting for double-check
      Your receipt needs to be double-checked by a member of our staff. Your receipt will be checked within 24 hours.
      RejectedYour receipt can (currently) not be processed for a VAT refund claim. We will let you know why your receipt was rejected via email. The reject reason will also be visible under the receipt status in your account. Go to your 'my receipts' page and select the receipt to see the reject reason.
      Waiting for shop validation
      The store where you bought your items is new in our system or needs to be updated because it hasn't received a claim in a very long time. We’re in the process of contacting them to receive information about how to submit your claim to their administration.
      Ready for invoicing
      Your account and receipt details have been checked and approved. We’re ready to send your claim to the store. We send invoices for VAT refund claims to stores two (2) times a month.
      Waiting for payment from shop
      We’ve sent your claim to the store for processing. Most stores process claims within 30 business days. You can find your expected payment date in your account.
      Paid by shop
      The store has processed your claim and transferred the VAT to vatfree.com. You can now request payment.
      Payout requested
      We’ve received your payment request. The amount will be transferred to your account during our first upcoming payment-run. You’ll receive a notification via email when payment has been transferred to your account.
      Fully paid
      We’ve transferred your refund amount to your account. You should have received an email from us to let you know that we've paid.

      Depreciated

      If your receipt has the status 'depreciated' this means your claim has expired in our system and can no longer be paid (due to bookkeeping and accounting reasons). Claims expire in our system if you do not request payment within 2 years after the store has processed your claim. Please keep a close eye on your email inbox and the receipt status in your account. As soon as a store has processed your claim we let you know automatically via email (and in your account) that you can log in to request payment. Please request payment on time so your claim does not expire.
      Do I need to show items to customs in their original packaging? /

      Yes. Officially, purchased items must be presented to customs in their original packaging. If, for whatever reason, you need to use your purchases before leaving the EU (like a new phone or laptop) please bring the original packaging with you to customs.

      We advise you to always leave price tags on clothing and to leave food items in their original packaging until after you have arrived back in your non-EU homecountry.

      Germany 🇩🇪 /

      Standard VAT rate: 19%

      Low VAT rate: 7% on some foods, books (excluding books whose content is harmful to minors), e-books, audiobooks, newspapers and periodicals (except those containing content harmful to minors and/or more than 50% advertising)

      Minimum spend amount: EUR 50.01 in the same store on the same day

      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Ask in the store: an invoice, Tax-Free form, or Tax-Free receipt: showing your name, non-EU address and passport number.


      Required for Germany Customs: 

      Tip: In Germany, Customs wants to see an invoice, Tax-Free form, or Tax-Free receipt from the store: showing your name, non-EU address and passport number. If the store did not provide this, you need to download and print a tax-free form for customs.

      Airports:
      Berlin Tegel Airport, Germany


      France 🇫🇷 /

      Standard VAT rate: 20%

      Low VAT rate: 10% on some foods, some works of art, collectors items

      Low VAT rate: 5.5% on medicines, some pharmaceutical goods, books, magazines

      Minimum spend amount: EUR 100 in the same store on the same day

      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Ask in the store: in France, you must receive a Tax-Free form from the store. If you don’t receive a Tax-Free form in-store, you can’t get back the VAT. Your VAT is refunded by the Tax-Free company visible on the form.


      Required for French Customs: 

      Tip: In France, the Customs system is digital for receipts from French stores. You can get proof of export at special Tax-Free machines which are located at every international airport in France. They’re usually placed before check-in, in international departure halls. The machine will ask you to scan the Tax-Free form which you received from the store. Your VAT is refunded by the Tax-Free company visible on the form. For receipts from stores in other EU countries you can go to the manual Customs desk located in the same area as the digital Customs machines. You must provide a standard Tax-Free form for each purchase or an invoice from the store showing you name, non-EU address and passport number.

      If the Customs machine is not working or you’re departing from another EU country, go to a manual Customs desk for an export stamp. You can ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction.




      Belgium 🇧🇪 /

      Standard VAT rate: 21%

      Low VAT rate: 6% - food and books

      Minimum spend amount: EUR 125,01 in the same store on the same day

      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Ask in the store: an invoice, Tax-Free receipt or Tax-Free form showing your name, non-EU address and passport number. If the store can't provide this, you can download and print a standard Tax-Free form yourself to add to the purchase documents from the store. 


      Required for Belgian Customs: 

      Tip: Here is a guide for Customs at Brussels Airport

      In Belgium, Customs want to see an invoice, Tax-Free receipt or Tax-Free form showing your name, non-EU address and passport number. If the store can't provide this, you can download and print a standard Tax-Free form yourself to add to the purchase documents from the store.

      Spain 🇪🇸 /

      Standard VAT rate: 21%

      Low VAT rate: 10% on food and some optical products

      Low VAT rate: 4% on medicines, pharmaceutical goods, books, magazines

      Minimum spend amount: EUR 0 - no minimum

      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Ask in the store: in Spain, when you go shopping, you must bring your passport to get a DIVA Tax-Free form from the store. If you don’t receive a Tax-Free from in-store, you can’t get back the VAT. Your VAT is refunded by the Tax-Free company visible on the form.


      Required for Spanish Customs: 

      Tip: You can find a guide for Spanish Customs here.

      In Spain, the Customs system is digital. You can get proof of export at special Tax-Free machines which are located at every international airport in Spain. They’re usually located before check-in, in international departure halls. The machine will ask you to scan the Tax-Free form which you received from the store. Your VAT is refunded by the Tax-Free company visible on the form.

      If the Customs machine is not working or you’re departing from another EU country, go to a manual Customs desk for an export stamp. You can ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction. Issues with getting a customs stamp in Spain? File a complaint here.


      Don't forget to bring your passport when you go shopping. You'll need to show it to the store to get a DIVA Tax-Free form.



      Italy 🇮🇹 /

      Standard VAT rate: 22%

      Low VAT rate: 10% - food (meat and other food items)
      Low VAT rate: 5% - herbs (basil, oregano and sage)

      Low VAT rate: 4% - milk, fruit, vegetables, bread and prescription glasses

      Minimum spend amount: EUR 70 euros per invoice or in the same store on the same day


      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Required documentation for customs: 



      Greece 🇬🇷 /

      Standard VAT rate: 24%
      Standard VAT rate on Chios, Kos, Mytilini and Samos Islands: 17%

      Low VAT rate: 13% - fresh food, some basic foods, infant and child nutrition, diapers, child seats


      Minimum spend amount: €50 per invoice or in the same store on the same day


      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Required documentation for customs: 



      Portugal 🇵🇹 /

      Standard VAT rate mainland: 23%
      Standard VAT rate Madeira: 22% 

      Standard VAT rate Azores: 18%

      Low VAT rate: 13% - wine, musical instruments

      Low VAT rate: 6% - medicines, books, optical lenses


      Minimum spend amount mainland 23%: €61,50 per invoice or in the same store on the same day
      Minimum spend amount mainland 13%: €56,50 per invoice or in the same store on the same day
      Minimum spend amount mainland 6%: €53 per invoice or in the same store on the same day


      Minimum spend amount Madeira 22%: €61 per invoice or in the same store on the same day
      Minimum spend amount Azores 18%: €59 per invoice or in the same store on the same day


      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Required documentation for customs: 



      Austria 🇦🇹 /

      Standard VAT rate: 20%

      Low VAT rate: 13% - wine

      Low VAT rate: 10% -  food, books and pharmaceutical products

      Minimum spend amount: €75,01 per invoice or in the same store on the same day Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase

      Ask in the store: an invoice, Tax-Free form, or Tax-Free receipt: showing your name, non-EU address and passport number

      Bring to Austrian Customs:

      Tip: Austrian Customs want to see an invoice, Tax-Free form, or Tax-Free receipt: showing your name, non-EU address and passport number.

      If you did not receive this from the store, you need to download and print a Tax-Free form for customs yourself. Some airports in Austria, like the one in Vienna, have digital customs systems. View the airport guides below for more information.


      Airports:

      Customs Guide Vienna Airport
      Customs Guide Salzburg Airport






      Denmark 🇩🇰 /

      Standard VAT rate: 25%


      Minimum spend amount: 300.01 DKK on the same day and in the same store


      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Required documentation for customs: 



      Ireland 🇮🇪 /

      Standard VAT rate: 23%

      Low VAT rate: 13% - food supplements


      Minimum spend amount: €75 per invoice or in the same store on the same day


      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Required documentation for customs: 



      Good to know:

      • Tax-Free shopping is available in the Republic of Ireland AND Northern Ireland, for non-EU residents.
      • With Brexit, the UK left the EU single market and customs union, while special arrangements were made for Northern Ireland. Under the Northern Ireland Protocol, Northern Ireland remains aligned with the EU single market and customs union. 
      • Due to the Northern Ireland Protocol, residents of Northern Ireland can not shop Tax-Free in the EU
      How can I verify my account? /

      You can verify your account by submitting all required fields (*) on your account page. This information is required by the Tax Administration to refund VAT.

      After you have submitted all required details they will be checked by a member of our team. You will receive a confirmation via email when your account has been verified.




      Where can I get proof of export / VAT exemption? /

      Choose a situation below for more information about where to get proof of export / VAT exemption:

      1. Non-EU residents exporting via hand luggage/airplane

      2. Non-EU residents exporting via car 

      3. Non-EU residents exporting via train

      4. Individuals exporting via ocean freighter (cargo)

      5. Individuals exporting via air courier; DHL, UPS, FedEx et. (cargo)

      6. Individuals working at NATO

      7. EU-based diplomats
      Frankfurt Airport, Germany /


      Customs systemManual, customs stamp
      Minimum Spend threshold€50.01 per invoice/receipt
      Customs locations and opening hoursOn the way to your gate, after passport control, 24/7.
      Contact details

      Phone: +49 180 6372 4636

      Email: [email protected]


      For immediate assistance at the airport you can also use an InfoGate.
      Required documentation for German customs and German stores
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      More informationFrankfurt airport website - VAT refunds


      Munich Airport, Germany /


      Customs systemManual, customs stamp
      Minimum Spend threshold€50.01 per invoice/receipt
      Customs locations and opening hoursAll Munich airport customs locations and opening hours can be found here.
      Contact details

      Phone: +49 89 975 00

      Email: [email protected]

      Required documentation for German customs and German stores
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      More information

      Munich airport website - Customs Offices


      Düsseldorf Airport, Germany /


      Customs systemManual, customs stamp
      Minimum Spend threshold€50.01 per invoice/receipt
      Customs locations and opening hoursNext to check-in counter 190. 
      Contact details

      Phone: +492114216666

      Email: [email protected]

      Required documentation for German customs and German stores
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      More informationDüsseldorf airport website - VAT refunds


      Berlin Brandenburg international Airport, Germany /


      Customs systemManual, customs stamp
      Minimum Spend threshold€50.01 per invoice/receipt
      Customs locations and opening hoursTerminal 1, check-in island 7

      Transfer passengers leaving the EU can go to the customs office in the gallery in the main hall if they did not receive a customs certificate at their departure airport.
      Contact details

      Phone: +49 30 6091 6091 0

      Email: [email protected]

      Required documentation for German customs and German stores
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      More informationBerlin Brandenburg airport website - VAT refunds


      VAT refunds - laws and regulations /

      EU law states certain types of customers are exempt from paying VAT over items bought in the EU. Local national laws on VAT and exemptions are based on and correspond to EU law.

      For more information about corresponding national laws in your EU country, please contact us via [email protected].

      The list below includes customers and situations in which vatfree.com can help:


      Situation, customers and items exemptLaw
      Items transported to a destination outside the EU by or on behalf of the vendor
      Article 146(1)(a) VAT Directive
      Items transported to a destination outside the EU by or on behalf of the customerArticle 146(1)(b) VAT Directive
      Items transported to a destination outside the EU by a non-EU resident in their personal luggage
      Article 147 VAT Directive
      Items bought by staff of an embassy, permanent representation, consulate and other international bodies and their membersArticle 151(1)(a)(b) VAT Directive
      Armed forces of a NATO country and the civilian staff accompanying them
      Article 151(1)(c) and (d) VAT Directive




      Barcelona Airport, Spain /

      

      Customs system
      • Manual, wet stamp, customs desk (Spanish and other EU stores)
      • Digital terminal (DIVA), barcode scan (Spanish stores)
      Minimum Spend threshold0 / no minimum for Spanish stores
      Minimum spend threshold's for other countries can be found here
      Customs locations and opening hours

      Terminal T1, Floor 3 (Check-in hall)
      Open 24 hours

      Terminal T2 B, Floor 0, Departures hall
      Open from 07.00 - 22.00

      Contact details                             

      Phone: +34 91 321 10 00

      Email: [email protected]

      Required documentation for customs
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      More InformationBarcelona airport website - VAT refunds


      Malaga airport, Spain /


      Customs system
      • Manual, wet stamp, customs desk (Spanish and other EU stores)
      • Digital terminal (DIVA), barcode scan
      Minimum Spend threshold0 / no minimum for Spanish stores
      Minimum spend threshold's for other countries can be found here
      Customs locations and opening hours

      Terminal T3, Floor 1 (Check-in hall)
      To the left of the check-in area counters 363-386
      Open from 07.00 - 22.00

      Contact details                             

      Phone: +34 952 792 935

      Email: [email protected]

      Required documentation for customs
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      More Information

      Malaga airport website - VAT refunds


      ONLINE → store delivers to EU address → you export via courier (DHL, UPS, FedEX etc) /

      If the online store delivers your items to an address inside the EU first and you then export the items yourself via courier like DHL, UPS, FedEX or another postal forwarding company;

      1. Get a correct receipt from the store Your receipt from the store should show your name and non-EU address. Don't forget to add these details to your payment information when checking out your shopping cart and paying online. 

      2. Get proof of export
        Find out which documents you need here.


      3. Create an account and register your claim
        You can download our app (Google Play | Apple Store) or create an account via our website.

        Register your receipt in your account. We’ll ask you to upload copies of your documents.

      After completing this process we'll keep you updated by email automatically. We'll provide a time-frame for your refund and we'll notify you when your VAT has come in from the store. Information about payment methods can be found here.

      Where can I submit a payment request? /

      You can request payment via the 'Receipts' page in your Vatfree.com account. On your Receipts page, select the green 'Payout refunds' button to start the payment process. 

      The payment option will become available after a store has processed your claim.



      Information about your payment date can be found here.

      Do Russian sanctions effect my payment? /

      Due to current sanctions the PayPal and Creditcard payment options are no longer available for Russian accounts. Payments to Russian creditcard accounts and PayPal accounts connected to Russian cards will be blocked and sent back to our bank. If you live in Russia please choose a different payment option or use the creditcard or PayPal account of a family member or friend based in a country other than Russia.  

      I can’t see the 'payout refunds' payment button in my account, now what? /

      You can find out where you should be able to find the payment button here.   

      If we sent you an email to let you know the store has processed your claim but you can't find the payment button when logged into your account, the following might be happening:


      You logged into a duplicate account

      Go to your receipts page and check if your claim is visible there. If your claim isn't visible you might have logged into your other account (created a long time ago with a different email address or social button).

      Check the email we sent you to determine to which of your accounts it was sent. You need to use that account/login method to log into the correct account and see your claim and the payment button.

      If you used the correct email address/login method but still can't see your claim, please contact us via [email protected]. We might need to merge your accounts if you have more than 1 so you can see all your claims in one place.

      The store reversed paymentIf your claim is visible on the 'my receipts' page in your account and you received an email about payment your receipt status should be 'paid by shop' (the store has processed your claim). If you received an email from us to let you know the store has paid, but your receipt status is still 'waiting for payment from shop', this means payment from the store was reversed or there is another payment issue playing in the background. Please contact us via [email protected].
      I have a receipt without store details and can’t remember the store name and address, now what? /

      We need the store name and address to find the store's contact details and the correct department to send your VAT refund claim for payment.

      If you remember the store name and address please let us know via [email protected].

      If you don't remember the store name and/or address you can check your payments in your banking system. The name of the store might be visible in the transaction details. Search on/around the purchase date and the amount mentioned on your receipt. Let us know the store name via [email protected].

      If you haven't received proof of export yet and because you don't have a receipt with store name and address (officially required information), we advise you to bring a tax-free form to customs. You can also contact the store and ask for an official invoice.


      What if my customs stamp is unclear/smudged? /

      If your customs stamp is a bit or very unclear/smudged you can upload a copy of your boarding pass/flight itinerary as extra proof for the store that your items were exported. Your name and exit date from the EU (corresponding to the date on your customs stamp) should be clearly visible.

      Eindhoven, The Netherlands /


      Customs system
      • Manual, wet stamp, customs desk (Dutch and other EU stores)
      • Digital terminal, barcode scan (Dutch stores)
      Minimum Spend threshold€50,- per store per day
      Minimum spend threshold's for other countries can be found here
      Customs locations and opening hours

      The customs desk at Eindhoven Airport is located on 1ste floor. Before check-in and passport control, in the main hall, take the elevator up to the 1ste floor. When arriving on the first floor with the elevator, turn right. At the end of the hall you can find the customs desk. The yellow signs will point you in the right direction.
      Desk open from 06:00 – 22:00 Customs officers are present at the airport 24/7 If the desk is closed, you can contact customs via the numbers displayed on the customs desk. A customs officer will come down to the desk to stamp your receipts. If you can not find the number, please ask an airport employee for help.

      Contact details                             

      Eindhoven Airport general contact number: +35227000767 (a customer service agent can connect you to the customs department)

      Required documentation for customs
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form is mandatory
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      Rotterdam airport, The Netherlands /
      Customs system
      • Manual, wet stamp, customs desk (Dutch and other EU stores)
      • Digital terminal, barcode scan (Dutch stores)
      Minimum Spend threshold€50,- per store per day
      Minimum spend threshold's for other countries can be found here
      Customs locations and opening hours

      The customs desk at Rotterdam Airport is located on 1ste floor. When arriving via the main entrance of the airport, turn right and take the stairs up. Signs will direct you to the customs desk. If you're not sure, please ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction

      Customs officers are present at the airport 24/7 If the desk is closed, you can contact customs via the numbers displayed on the customs desk (and below). A customs officer will come down to the desk to stamp your receipts. If you can not find the number, please ask an airport employee for help.

      Contact details                             

      Rotterdam Airport general contact number: +35227000767 Rotterdam Airport Customs: +31881538300

      Required documentation for customs
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass


      Why is my VAT refund payment delayed? /

      Please note that the expected refund date in your account is an approximation and not guaranteed.


      If your payment has not come in within 2 weeks after the expected refund date in your account and you have not heard from us yet, please contact us via [email protected]


      In general, reasons for payment delays can be the following and will vary depending on the partnership status of the store:


      The finance department of the store only processes payments once a month and/or has longer than usual payment terms

      A store employee responsible for payments is on holiday

      A store employee responsible for payments is sick

      The store has changed their contact address, bank account or other billing details and did not communicate this to us

      The store has changed their refund policy and did not communicate this to us


      The store is not sure our request is legitimate because you did not contact them beforehand (and therefore unfortunately did not respond and pay)

      The store has never received a VAT refund claim before and is still waiting for information about the VAT refund process from the tax administration and/or their accountant/tax-analyst

      The store is already working with a different VAT refund company (and therefore unfortunately did not respond and pay)

      The store prefers to refund the VAT to you directly (and therefore unfortunately did not respond and pay)

      The store never refunds VAT (and therefore unfortunately did not respond and pay)




      Why has my refund in Euro been subject to conversion into US dollars (or another currency)? /

      Due to VISA and MasterCard (CreditCard) processes which lie out of our control, our payment in euro's might be subject to conversion to the default currency of your card. These processes are determined by VISA and MasterCard, not vatfree.com. We apologise in advance for any inconvenience this might cause and kindly ask for your understanding if this is the case. 

      If you want to avoid conversion, please choose a different payment option:



      What NATO/OTAN Bases are in in Europe and The UK? /

      NATO/OTAN bases in the EU and UK
      NetherlandsJoint Force Command Brunssum – Brunssum
      NATO Communication and Information Agency (NCIA) - The Hague
      BelgiumSHAPE (Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe) - Mons
      Joint Medical Command – Brussels
      SpainCentre of Excellence for Operations in Confined and Shallow Waters - Cartagena
      NATO Submarine Rescue System Facility - Cartagena
      UKRoyal Naval Air Station - Yeovilton
      Northwood Headquarters 
      Imjin Barracks - Gloucester
      Blandford Camp
      Royal Air Force - Molesworth Cambridge
      FranceAllied Maritime Command - Northwood (UK) and Rennes (France)
      NATO Rapid Deployable Corps - Lille (France)
      NATO Communications and Information Systems School - Oeiras (Portugal) and Saint-Germain-en-Laye (France)
      NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Force Command -Geilenkirchen (Germany) and Avord (France)
      Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Centre - Monsanto (Portugal) and Paris (France)
      GermanyJoint Support and Enabling Command - Ulm
      Joint Warfare Centre - Stavanger
      Joint Air Power Competence Centre - Kalkar
      Combined Air Operations Centre Uedem – Uedem
      AustriaJoint Force Command (JFC) - Brunssum, Netherlands (responsible for Austria, among other countries)
      LuxembourgNATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) - Capellen, Luxembourg
      DenmarkNATO Headquarters - Karup Air Base, Denmark
      Air Command and Control System (ACCS) Programme Management
      Agency – Skrydstrup Air Base, Denmark
      NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence - Tallinn, Estonia
      (although not in Denmark, it is affiliated with Denmark)
      GreeceNATO Maritime Interdiction Operational Training Centre - Souda Bay
      ItalyAllied Joint Force Command Naples - Naples
      NATO Defense College - Rome
      NATO Communications and Information Systems School - Latina
      NorwayJoint Warfare Centre - Stavanger

      Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Centre – Monsanto (Portugal)
      PortugalAllied Maritime Command - Northwood (UK) and Rennes (France)
      NATO Communications and Information Systems School - Oeiras (Portugal) and Saint-Germain-en-Laye (France)
      Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Centre - Monsanto (Portugal) and Paris (France)
      Czech RepublicJoint Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Defence Centre of Excellence – Vyskov
      PolandMultinational Corps Northeast - Szczecin, Poland
      Joint Force Training Centre - Bydgoszcz, Poland
      NATO Force Integration Unit (NFIU) - Szczecin, Poland
      NATO Counter Intelligence Centre of Excellence (NATO CI COE) - Krakow, Poland
      CroatiaJoint Logistics Support Group - Zemunik, Croatia
      NATO C4ISR Centre of Excellence (NATO C4ISR COE) - Otok, Croatia
      SwedenJoint Nordic Training and Exercise Centre (JNTC) - Vidsel Test Range, Sweden
      Swedish Armed Forces International Centre (SWEDINT) - Kungsängen, Sweden
      Joint CBRN Defence Centre of Excellence - Vyskov, Czech Republic, (although not in Sweden, it is affiliated with Sweden)
      FinlandFinnish Defence Forces International Centre (FINCENT) - Hamina, Finland
      Centre of Excellence for Military Medicine (MILMED COE) - Budapest, Hungary (although not in Finland, it is affiliated with Finland)
      HungaryNATO Force Integration Unit (NFIU) - Székesfehérvár, Hungary
      Multinational Logistics Coordination Centre (MLCC) - Székesfehérvár, Hungary
      Brussels Airport (Zaventem), Belgium /


      Customs systemManual, customs stamp
      Minimum Spend threshold€125 per invoice/receipt
      Customs locations and opening hours

      In the departure hall, follow the icon below to report to customs.


      This customs office is open every day, including weekends, from 7 am to 10 pm. Want to drop by at another time? Then head to the customs office in the Arrivals Hall. This is located next to the passenger exit. Ring the bell and a customs officer will be able to assist you further.

      For transfer passengers, you can find customs in the Gates B commercial area.

      Contact details

      Phone: +32 2 753 77 53

      Required documentation for Belgium customs and Belgium stores
      • A complete purchase invoice containing the name and address of the store, quantity and description of the exported goods, identity of the purchaser (name, passport number and non-EU address)
      • If you don't have a complete invoice an additional tax-free form can help to get some employees to stamp your receipts
      • Purchased items
      • Passport
      • If you have an EU passport; proof of residence outside the EU
      • Boarding pass
      More informationBrussels Airport website - VAT refunds
      What is the time limit for exporting goods via ocean freighter? /

      Items must be exported via ocean freighter before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase.

      The Netherlands 🇳🇱 /

      Standard VAT rate: 21%

      Low VAT rate: 9% on food and drink, agricultural products and services, medicines, books, daily newspapers and magazines.

      Minimum spend amount: EUR 50 per store per day

      Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Ask in the store: A normal receipt, invoice, Tax-Free receipt or Tax-Free form showing your name, non-EU address and passport number. If the store can't provide a purchase document showing your details, you can print a standard Tax-Free form yourself. 


      Required for Dutch Customs: 

      Tip: In The Netherlands, Customs needs to see a purchase document from the store which shows your name, non-EU address and passport number. This can be any normal receipt, invoice, Tax-Free receipt or Tax-Free form. If the store can't provide a document with your details, you can print a standard Tax-Free form yourself. 
      Bulgaria 🇧🇬 /

      Standard VAT rate: 20%

      Low VAT rate: 9%

      Minimum spend amount: BGN 300, per invoice or in the same store on the same day Time limit to export: before the end of the 3rd month, after the month of purchase


      Ask in the store: an invoice showing you name, non-EU address and passport number


      Bring to Bulgarian Customs:

      Tip: Bulgarian Customs want to see an invoice from the store + a Tax-Free form. If you did not receive this from the store, you need to download and print a Tax-Free form for customs yourself.




      Vienna, Austria /

      Customs system: Please read the Vienna airport instructions here.

      Vienna airport has a digitalised export validation system for connected stores, free of cost. 

      Go to one of the designated DEV (Digital Export Validation) areas and carry out digital export validation using your own mobile device (connect to the DEV WiFi) or directly at one of the self-service kiosks.

      If the store is not connected to the Vienna export validation system, you must go to a manual export validation desk (located in the DEV area). Costs are EUR 7 + you will need to bring a Tax-Free form.

      Required for customs at Vienna airport:




      What if I have a digital receipt? /

      Received a digital purchase receipt or invoice, from an online store for example? Great!

      Exiting the EU by airplane, car or train: Print a copy of your digital receipt to bring to Customs, to get proof of export from the EU. Online stores usually send a digital receipt to your email inbox, or it can be found in your online shopping account. You can also contact the store customer service to ask for it.

      Exiting the EU via ocean freighter or courier (DHL, FedEX, UPS etc): If your items are being sent overseas by ocean freighter or courier, you don't need to print your digital receipt because you're not passing by customs physically yourself. When you register a receipt in your Vatfree.com account, you can simply upload your digital receipt together with the digital export documents which you received from your shipper.


      Tip: When ordering online, you usually have the option to submit a delivery address and a billing address. Add your own name, passport number, and non-EU address in the billing section so your receipt meets the requirements for a VAT refund. 


      How can I delete a receipt? /

      To delete a receipt from your account, go to 'My receipts'  select the receipt you want to delete select the red button 'Delete this receipt'

      Please note; if a receipt has already been approved and sent to the store for processing, it can no longer be deleted.



      How can I delete my account? /

      You have the right to have your data deleted, with the exception of data we are legally required to keep in our archives for tax compliance purposes.


      If you have a completed VAT refund request, we’re legally obligated to store these details for the tax administration for the duration of 7 years:


      If you would like to have your data removed, please contact our customer service via [email protected]. We will respond to this request within 30 days.


      Your rights

      Through your Vatfree.com account you can access and update your personal information. You can unsubscribe from newsletters at any time. If we have processed data based on your consent you have the right to withdraw this consent whenever you want. If there is certain data you are unable to correct or erase, please contact us via [email protected].


      Data access and portability You have the right to receive an overview of all data we have from you. Upon request, this will be sent to you or any party you would prefer as a JSON file.


      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:

      Vatfree.com

      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 Vatfree.com service fee?

      Vatfee.com refund calculator

      What if I find a lower fee somewhere else? 

      How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies? 

      Why do I pay a service fee?



      Tax Free forms can look like this:



      What if I find a lower service fee somewhere else? /

      We guarantee the highest refund in the Tax-Free market.


      If you discover a higher refund somewhere else, we'll lower our service fee for you. 


      To qualify for a lower service fee you can submit:


      1. A Tax-Free form which you received from the store at the time of purchase, showing the Tax-Free company details and the exact refund amount for that specific purchase

      2. A confirmation by email from another Tax-Free company, stating their service fee and/or refund amount for your particular purchase

      Keep in mind that some Tax-Free companies may have varying refund rates per store and country. Therefore, we request proof for each specific purchase.


      Frequently Asked Questions:
      What is a Tax-Free form?

      Why do I pay a service fee?

      How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies? 

      What is the Vatfree.com service fee?

      Vatfee.com refund calculator



      How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies? /

      Our fee structure is simple:


      For every store and receipt, we charge a standard fee of 28% of the VAT with a maximum service fee of 80 EUR per receipt. 


      You can compare the Vatfree.com refund versus competitors with our Refund Calculator:

      https://www.vatfree.com/refund-calculator 


      ✅ Good to know: All Tax-Free companies charge a service fee. You can find out why, here. Vatfree.com offers the highest refund guaranteed, with a maximum fee, which is unique in the Tax-Free market. With big purchases and high VAT amounts, our maximum fee can save you hundreds of Euros compared to others. If you find a higher refund amount somewhere else, let us know and we’ll lower our service fee for you. 


      This competitor matrix shows where you pay what when claiming back VAT:



      Vatfree.com

      Competitors

      Service fee


      28% of the VAT

      Maximum 80 EUR


      30-70% of the VAT No Maximum


      Fee for cash refunds

      -

      Fee for cancellation of pre-paid VAT refunds (if a direct refund was received in-store but proof of export was not obtained when exiting the EU)

      -

      Fee for late submission of Tax-Free documents

      -

        ✅

      Fee for Visa and Mastercard transactions

        ✅

      Fee for PayPal transactions

        ✅

      Fee for European IBAN debit transactions

      -

      Fee for AliPay transactions

      -


      *Vatfree.com does not refund in cash because this results in extra fees (currency conversion and cash handling fees).


      Refund amounts of other Tax-Free companies are visible on their Tax-Free forms, which you received from the stores at the moment of purchase. Some Tax-Free forms show other applicable fees in the small print. Further information about fees can be found in the Terms and Conditions on Tax-Free company websites.



      Frequently Asked Questions:

      What is a Tax-Free form?

      What if I find a lower fee somewhere else? 

      Why do I pay a service fee?

      What is the Vatfree.com service fee?
      Vatfee.com refund calculator


      Disclaimer: this information was last updated on the 15th of March 2024.

      Where can I find the Global Blue service fee? /

      The Global Blue service fee can be calculated from the numbers provided on the Tax-Free form which you received from the store. 


      Subtract the Refund amount from the total VAT amount = Global Blue service fee

      In the examples below:

      1) 115,41 VAT - 73 Refund = 42,41 (36,74% of the VAT)

      2) 1325 total purchase amount x 21/121 % VAT = total VAT 229,96 minus Refund 159 = 70,96 (30,85% of the VAT)


      Information about other applicable fees like immediate refund fee (and potential fines), cash refund fee and credit card conversion rates can be found in the terms and conditions on the Global Blue website.


      ✅ Received a Global Blue Tax-Free form from the store which you want to submit via Vatfree.com? Check our shopping guide to see if the store cooperates with Vatfree.com.


      ✅ Looking for Information about Vatfree.com service fees? You can find everything here.


      Frequently Asked Questions Can I submit receipts/forms from other Tax-Free companies (Global Blue, Innova, Premier, etc)?

      How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies?

      What if I find a lower service fee somewhere else?
      What is the Vatfree.com service fee?







      Where can I find the Planet Payment service fee? /

      The Planet Payment service fee can be found on their Tax-Free form which you received from the store. 


      Information about other applicable fees can be found in the terms and conditions on the Planet website.


      ✅ Received a Planet Tax-Free form from the store which you want to submit via Vatfree.com? Check our shopping guide to see if the store cooperates with Vatfree.com.


      ✅ Looking for Information about Vatfree.com service fees? You can find everything here.


      Frequently Asked Questions

      Can I submit receipts/forms from other Tax-Free companies (Global Blue, Innova, Premier, etc)?

      How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies?

      What if I find a lower service fee somewhere else?
      What is the Vatfree.com service




      Where can I find the Easy Tax Free service fee? /

      You can find Easy Tax Free service fees by using the refund calculator on the Easy Tax-Free website.


      Received an Easy Tax Free voucher from the store which you want to submit via Vatfree.com? Check our shopping guide to see if the store cooperates with Vatfree.com. Don't forget to upload a photo of your actual purchase receipt showing the purchase and VAT amounts.


      ✅ Looking for information about Vatfree.com service fees? You can find everything here.


      Frequently Asked Questions

      Can I submit receipts/forms from other Tax-Free companies (Global Blue, Innova, Premier, etc)?

      How do Vatfree.com fees compare to other Tax-Free companies?

      What if I find a lower service fee somewhere else?
      What is the Vatfree.com service fee?





      How does the Vatfree.com app work on POS? /

      The Vatfree.com app for Point-of-Sale (POS) is a simple and straightforward solution for Tax-Free shopping, saving your sales assistants, finance specialists and customers lots of time when dealing with Tax-Free purchases and sales.

      With Vatfree.com for POS, your systems communicate with Vatfree.com in real-time.


      When a customer makes a purchase, your POS prints a special Tax-Free receipt, which includes a unique QR code. This QR code contains encoded information about the transaction. The data is sent to Vatfree.com automatically when the purchase is completed on your POS.


      1. Your POS automatically recognises country of origin

      When your customer pays with a non-EU bank or credit card, your POS automatically prints a Tax-Free receipt with estimated refund amount. You can also print Tax-Free receipts for purchases paid in cash or with EU bank accounts.


      1. Your POS prints a Tax-Free receipt

      The Tax-Free receipt contains a QR code for validation at Customs. The customer can provide all their own details, in their own language, at a later point in time.


      1. Optional: Hand out a Vatfree.com information folder

      Our information folder explains what your customer needs to do with their Tax-Free receipt and how to submit their VAT refund claim. You don’t have to do anything else.




      The unique QR code, known as the Proof-of-purchase-record (POPr) code, serves several important purposes in the VAT refund process:

      1. Single Source of Truth: The transaction data originating from your POS is our single source of truth and is automatically shared with customers, Vatfree.com and Customs, preventing errors and eliminating discrepancies that may arise from manual entries.

      2. Preventing Double Claims: Our QR codes are designed to be used only once. When a customer claims back VAT by scanning their QR code, the code becomes inactive. This prevents the same receipt from being registered multiple times.

      3. Verification: The unique QR code also acts as a verification mechanism. It ensures that the customer indeed possesses a legitimate Tax-Free receipt generated by your POS system.

      4. Data Accuracy: Because the QR code contains your transaction-specific data, it helps your customers accurately record and submit the details of a specific sale and refund request without manual data entry, preventing mistakes and errors.

      5. Efficiency: The use of a unique code streamlines the VAT refund process. It reduces the administrative burden on customs, customers and retailers, making the process more efficient and user-friendly for all stakeholders.

      In summary, the QR code on our Tax-Free receipts are unique, one-time-use codes generated by your POS system. They play a vital role in ensuring data accuracy, preventing fraud, and simplifying the VAT refund process by automating the transfer of transaction data between your store(s) and Vatfree.com.


      Frequently Asked Questions Which POS companies support Vatfree.com?

      Is there a fee for retail partners?


      Where can I find a copy of my customers' documents? /

      You can find copies of all your customers' documents in your invoice portal.
      When we send you an invoice via email, a link to your invoice portal is included there. You can also request the link via [email protected].

      View documents
      Select an invoice in the portal to find the underlying documentation. On the invoice page, select a receipt to view the documents. They will appear on the right of the screen. You can also download the PDFs. The PDF with images contains all document copies.



      Your invoice portal includes:


      Proof of residence outside the EU
      Vatfree.com can share copies of your customer's ID documents on request if the Tax Administration requires these in case of fiscal checks. Requests for ID documents can be submitted via [email protected].