According to the Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS), a tax refund can be claimed on the goods that are purchased in Australia. The Australian Customs and Border Protection Service, which is situated on the Departures Level just after Customs within the main SYD Airport Tax & Duty Free store is operating the TRS. TRS is applicable for all overseas visitors and Australian residents to claim a refund on the goods and services tax (GST) and wine equalization tax (WET) on goods that are bought in Australia.
According to the TRS, the bought items (eg: clothing, cameras, etc.) are allowed to be used during their stay in Australia and then when they leave the country they are allowed to get a specific amount back for the items which are not in the category of consumables like chocolates and wine.
Eligibility for a GST refund
If the purchases are:
• Made within60 days before leavingAustralia
• Amounting to $300 (GST inclusive) or more from any single business organization. For example, if the items are bought from one business (even on separate invoices) that amounting to $300, these items may be eligible for a tax refund under TRS.
• Goods are carried in (unless they are liquids, gels or aerosols) as hand luggage aboard through the aircraft as the person is leaving Australia, or the good could be checked in the luggage after they have been verified by an officer at the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service client services counter.
Purchases which are not eligible for refund
• Products such as beer, tobacco or spirit products.
• Goods that do not include GST/WET for them (e.g. medicines, etc.)
• Services (e.g. accommodation, tours warranties, vehicle hire, food items, etc.)
• Vouchers or gift cards
• Used up (in full or in part) in Australia (e.g. food, perfume, etc.).
• do not accompany you on your flight out of Australia.
How to Claim GST Refund at Sydney Airport?
Tax refund can be claimed by visiting TRS counter in the Sydney airport. As refunds, people can get back the total GST (price which paid for the eligible goods must be divided by 11). These refunds are debited to the Australian bank account within 30 days or paid to the credit card. It is an essential legal requirement that the person who purchases the goods should be the person who makes the claim for a refund of GST. It is also necessary to have the items which you are taking out of the country and documents such as the original tax invoices, the passport, boarding pass or other proof of travel. (Australian Customs and Border Protection Service, 2014)
1. Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (2014) TRS [Online] Available at : http://customs.gov.au/faq/TRS.asp [Accessed on 09.08.2014]2. Sydney Airport (2014) TRS [Online] Available at : http://www.sydneyairport.com.au/prepare/departures/tourist-refund-scheme.aspx [Accessed on 09.08.2014]3. Taxpayers Australia (2014) Tourist Refund Scheme [Online] Available at : http://www.taxpayer.com.au/KnowledgeBase/10072/Individuals-Tax-Super/Tourist_refund_scheme [Accessed on 09.08.2014]