Singapore VAT Refund for Tourist
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Electronic Tourist Refund Scheme
As a tourist in Singapore, you may claim a refund on the seven percent Goods and Services Tax (GST) paid on your purchases made at participating retail shops when you leave Singapore and bring your purchases home. Simply spend SGD100 or more to qualify. A handling fee for the refund service may be deducted from the GST amount.
Tourists may apply for their GST refund at the departure hall of Changi International Airport and Seletar Airport. From 21 January 2013, tourists who are departing from Singapore on an international cruise (excluding cruise-to-nowhere, round-trip cruise and regional ferry) via Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore and the International Passenger Terminal at HarbourFront Centre may also qualify for tax refund. The final destination of the ship’s voyage must not be Singapore and where the voyage involves the ship returning to Singapore on one or more occasions, the tourists may only claim GST refund on the ship’s last departure from Singapore in that voyage.
For information on the tourist’s eligibility criteria and conditions of the scheme, please visit www.iras.gov.sg.
Refunds via the Electronic Tourist Refund Scheme (eTRS)
Claiming your GST refund is easy and hassle-free—thanks to the eTRS. Simply choose one credit/debit card as a Token for tagging your purchases entitled for refund. This Token will allow you to easily retrieve all of your purchases’ details, at one go when you apply for GST refunds at the eTRS self-help kiosks at the airport and cruise terminal*. Alternatively, you can use the eTRS Tickets issued at the point of purchase to apply for your tax refunds at the airport and cruise terminal. Payment for your purchases can be made with any credit/debit card or cash.
4 Simple Steps to Claim Your Tax Refund:
1. At the Shops
When shopping at eTRS retail shops, use one credit/debit card as your Token to link up all your purchases. Ask for your eTRS Ticket and original invoice/receipt before leaving the shop.
2. Before Departure
If you plan to check-in your purchases, first apply for your GST refund at the eTRS self-help kiosk located at the Departure Check-in Hall (before departure immigration) of airport or Level 1 of cruise terminal using your Token or eTRS Tickets. You will not be entitled to a refund if you have checked-in your purchases prior to the application.
If you plan to hand-carry your purchases, proceed to the Departure Transit Lounge (after departure immigration) of airport or Level 2 of cruise terminal with your purchases and apply for GST refunds at the eTRS self-help kiosk.
3. At the eTRS Self-Help Kiosk
Use the credit/debit card that you have assigned as a Token to retrieve all your purchase details. Otherwise, scan your eTRS Tickets individually to retrieve your purchase details. Follow the instructions on the eTRS self-help kiosk to apply for your GST refund claims. You may be required to show your purchases, original invoice/receipt and boarding pass/confirmed air ticket/confirmation slip showing the cruise itinerary at the Customs Inspection Counter.
4. Collect Your Refund
For departure via Changi International Airport, the refund will be made to you either by credit card or cash. For departure via Seletar Airport, Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore or International Passenger Terminal at HarbourFront Centre, the refund will be made to you either by credit card or bank cheque.
If you have chosen to have the refund credited directly into your credit card, you may proceed to boarding after completing your claims. The approved refund amount will be credited to your specified credit card within 10 days.
If you have chosen cash refunds, proceed to the Central Refund Counter in the Departure Transit Lounge (after departure immigration) with the approved Notification Slip to collect your cash.
If you have chosen bank cheque refund, you have to complete your particulars such as payee name and mailing address on the approved Notification slip and drop the slip into the designated cheque refund box provided. The bank cheque will be mailed to you 14 days from the date of deposit of the approved notification slip into the designated box.
For more information, please refer to the Tourist Tax Refund Guide, available at http://www.iras.gov.sg/irasHome/uploadedFiles/Quick_Links/e-Tax_Guides/GST/Tourist%20Tax%20Refund%20Guide.pdf.
*eTRS Kiosk Locations and Operational Hours
eTRS self-help kiosks are located at:
- Changi International Airport Departure Check-in Hall (before departure immigration) and Departure Transit Lounge (after departure immigration) of Terminals 1, 2 and 3;
- Seletar Airport, Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) Duty Office;
- Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore, Level 1, Level 2 and Level 2M Mezzanine
- International Passenger Terminal at HarbourFront Centre, Level 1 and Level 2
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