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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We've been in France just under 2 years and will be returning to Australia in the new year. Sadly we were robbed and a number of things were stolen, including my Mac, a drone, tablet and other expensive items. I was going to replace them when we go back to Oz, but I was wondering if it's possible to buy these things in France before we leave and claim back the TVA/GST at the airport? Is that even an option, and if so, is there anything I need to do when I purchase them, to allow for the refund? Thanks for any advice.
 

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To claim back the VAT you need to have bought them as a "tourist" and to have the shop you buy from do the preliminary paperwork. At the airport, you then show the paperwork and the goods themselves to the Customs officials so that they can process a refund (and it will be sent to you back in Oz).

I'm not sure what the shops require for the VAT refund - possibly some proof of address in Oz and your "tourist visa" (or stamp in your passport) - but just be aware that the refund is NOT 100% of the VAT. Last time I checked, you only get back about 15% rather than the 20% you paid. (At least that's how it works for the big department stores in Paris.)

Be very sure NOT to pack your new stuff in your checked in bags. You have to produce the merchandise along with the paperwork (and I think the Customs office is airside at the airport).
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Remember that personal items are free from duty and tax if they have been owned and used by you overseas for 12 months or more. Otherwise duty may be payable if their combined value is over AUD $900.

I'd suggest carrying a copy of any police report you have from the original theft, insurance claim or something that would clearly show it is a recent replacement of something held for more than that 12 month period.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for all the advice. It's all helpful. A few online resources have also helped, but the remaining question we have is where to submit. If we fly to the UK for a few days, before returning to Australia, is the requirement to submit the paperwork at the airport in France or at the UK airport (as we'll exit the EU from there)?
 
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