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Tax Free

 
Information to Foreign Travellers Willing to Obtain Input VAT Refund
 
 
Who is eligible to VAT refund?
VAT refund is eligible to the persons permanently residing outside the European Union and carrying the goods purchased in Lithuania from the territory of the European Union (hereinafter referred to as the travellers), irrespective of their home country. Such persons shall present personal passport or personal identification card at the sales outlet.
 
 
What goods are eligible to input VAT refund?
Input VAT may be refunded with regard to all goods purchased by the travellers for personal use, except for:
 
articles made of gold and silver purchased before 1 June 2005, lump gold, tiles and plates, golden coins, jewels;
food products, alcoholic drinks, tobacco and tobacco products;
goods which by their type, intended purpose or quantity can be clearly identified as those not designated for personal (not commercial) purposes;
goods installed in private transport means (cars, vessels, airplanes), including fuel and oil;
goods export of which is allowed only subject to a licence issued under the procedure established by the legal acts;
vessels, aircrafts.
If any of the purchased goods are completely of partially consumed within the territory of the European Union the traveller may not obtain VAT refund with regard to such goods.
 
 
What is the time limit to carry the goods purchased by the travellers from the territory of the European Union?
The purchased goods must be carried from the territory of the European Union not later than within three months following the month in which the goods were purchased.  For example the goods purchased on 15 January 2004 must be carried by 30 April 2004; the goods purchased on 30 December 2004 must be carried by 31 March 2005 etc.
 
The date of carrying the goods is established against customs stamp on the VAT refund documents. 
 
 
What amount the goods shall be purchased for?
Input VAT is refunded provided that a single purchase by the traveller amounts to at least 200 Litas. The maximum purchase amount is not set.
 
 
Can VAT be refunded with regard to the goods purchased in any sales outlet?
VAT may be refunded only to the travellers who purchase goods in the sales outlets refunding input VAT. Such sales outlets have the sign TAX FREE SHOPPING at their cash registers.
 
The sales outlets may freely chose whether the goods purchased there will be subject to VAT refund therefore the travellers can not request refunding VAT from those sales outlets which are not engaged in VAT refund. 
 
 
What are the steps for the traveller in order to obtain input VAT refund?
The traveller has to ask the sales assistant to issue the following documents: 
 
Declaration of VAT refund to the traveller or an equivalent cheque of UAB “Global Refund”;
VAT invoice of purchased goods. From 1 May 2005 VAT invoices are replaced with cash register receipts;
When leaving the territory of the European Union the traveller must present the purchased goods along with these documents as well as personal passport (or personal identification card) to the customs officer of the European Union member state, the border of which is crossed to leave the territory of the European Union;  
 
Leaving the European Union on a transit flight:  
If the purchased goods are kept as part of the hand baggage of the traveller, which is taken by the traveller on board the plane, the traveller has to present the purchased goods along with the specified documents to the customs officer of the member state which is the last before leaving the territory of the European Union; 
 
If the purchased goods are kept as part of the baggage, which is not taken by the traveller on board the plane, the traveller must present the purchased goods along with the specified documents to the customs officer of the member state in which this baggage is submitted to baggage check-in of the airport;
 
The customs officer, having made sure that the foreign traveller who has purchased the goods carries all the purchased goods from the European Union, stamps declaration of VAT refund (or the equivalent cheque of UAB Global Refund). If not all the goods specified in the VAT refund documents are carried by the traveller from the European Union, the customs officer shall delete the missing goods from these documents and may do other required corrections; 
 
The traveller must return the declaration of VAT refund along with the document evidencing the purchase (VAT invoice or cash register receipt) to the sales outlet where the goods have been purchased (in cases when a sales outlet acts through an agent, the traveller has to submit the documents to the agent); 
 
Upon receipt of the documents the sales outlet transfers the VAT amount to the traveller (if the sales outlet is acting through an agent the agent may also refund VAT in cash). The sales outlet (the agent) may deduct administration fee from the refunded amount;
 
If the traveller sends properly filled-in VAT refund documents to the sales outlet and the sales outlet does not refund the VAT, the traveller should then contact that company (sales outlet).
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