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VAT reclaim/Internet shopping - Learn from my mistake!

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Yutenji
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VAT reclaim/Internet shopping - Learn from my mistake!

Postby Yutenji » Wed, 12 Jan 2005 6:53 pm

Hi, in the interests of preventing others from making the same mistake as me, let me pass on my recent cock-up. (If you want to make financial contributions for having saved you from the same pain, these would be gratefully accepted).

Even though I'm a Brit, I'm no longer resident there so I decided to take advantage of being able to reclaim VAT (17.5% !!) on any purchases during my recent hol. I bought a new PC (this model not available except in UK & US) from a reasonably well-known supplier based in the UK and asked them to provide the VAT forms so that I could reclaim the VAT on the way back to Singapore.

Cockup #1 - Even though the supplier promised to send the forms, they didn't arrive in time before I left. The reason for this becomes clear soon ...
Cockup #2 - The genuinely pleasant Customs people at the airport told me that even if the supplier had provided forms, VAT reclaim is not available on Internet-purchased goods. At my request, they even gave me a photocopy of the relevant rules, so that I can attempt to give the supplier a hard time.

Basically, the supplier's salesman bulls**ted me about providing the forms (a dishonest saleman?! surely not?!)

Fortunately, by purchasing through the internet I already got a better price than I could get in the shops, but the 'loss' of the addition saving on VAT has ticked me off somewhat.

Oh well. :cry:

Cheers
Last edited by Yutenji on Thu, 13 Jan 2005 9:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

tokcok
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Postby tokcok » Wed, 12 Jan 2005 11:14 pm

Thanks for the warning, I was'nt aware of that and I have been planning a major purchase online from the UK!

I'd much appreciate a copy of the rules or a link to a website where I could find them.

Thanks in advance!

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Yutenji
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Postby Yutenji » Thu, 13 Jan 2005 9:42 pm

tokcok wrote:... a copy of the rules ...

Hi, I've scanned the sheet given to me by customs at the airport, but its too big to upload. I can either email it to you or just give you the text itself (rather than a scan of the text)
Alternatively, call the National Advice Service on . 20 8929 0152 and ask for a copy of "Notice 704 - VAT retail exports", then look on page 10, section 2.8
Good luck

meanie

Postby meanie » Fri, 14 Jan 2005 6:20 pm

While it doesn't help in your situation, VAT IS deducted on goods mail-ordered by internet from the UK and delivered to Singapore. The VAT deducted from my numerous orders from Amazon UK more than cover any airmail postage charges. Seems very odd that it is chargeable in your situation. Do you have a link to the customs rules and regs?

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Yutenji
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Postby Yutenji » Sat, 15 Jan 2005 12:28 am

meanie wrote:VAT IS deducted on goods mail-ordered by internet from the UK and delivered to Singapore.

Hi, good point, but sadly the Internet PC mail-order companies (or at least the half-dozen I spoke to in the UK who stocked this particular PC model) will only deliver (a) within the UK and (b) to the billing address on your credit card. Fortunately I was able to change the address on my credit card to my parent address in the UK, get the PC delivered and then change it back to my Singapore address. [At least I beat the supplier on -that- one!] Also, bear in mind this was a 12.5kg PC. The air-delivery charges would have been, shall we say, significant.
meanie wrote:.... Do you have a link to the customs rules and regs?

If you poke around on www.hmce.gov.uk you will find more rules and regulations than you can shake a stick at! Having said that, interestingly, I could find the above VAT Note 704 in Spanish, Arabic and Japanese, but not English.
Good luck


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