VAT Refund Scheme for UAE Tourists

Jay krishnan, Partner


Tourists visiting UAE do not have to bear the burden of VAT, commencing from November 2018. Even though they will have to pay VAT while making the purchase, they can reclaim the amount upon leaving the UAE.
VAT refund scheme makes it possible for eligible tourists to receive a portion of the VAT as a refund for products bought at registered stores. VAT amount can be reclaimed via an electronic system, at designated spaces, without any human interference. Once you submit the required documents, the digital system decides whether the taxes are eligible for refund and if yes, reimburses the tourist via cash or credit card.

Planet, the exclusive tax refund operator of FTA, will operate the scheme. For this, a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) has been set up, where local partners will also collaborate with the international operator, Planet, to execute the project.

Procedure for retailers to join the scheme

  • Need to submit request to join the scheme online and be subject to a credit check
  • Issue a sales receipt at the point of sale and affix a Tax-Free tag
  • Adjust the VAT applicable under tourist refund scheme while submitting the VAT return

Who can issue tax free tags?

  • Any retailer registered for VAT with FTA, and who is regular in filing the return and paying due tax to authority
  • Seller of goods eligible to receive tax refunds as determined by the FTA

How we can help
Please contact HLB Hamt for any assistance in complying with the VAT tourist refund scheme. Our professionally qualified team will assist you in registering, complying, documentation and filing the VAT return as required by the scheme.

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