Refund for GST?

Old Aug 8th, 2003, 01:02 PM
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Refund for GST?


I just came back to the U.S> from Canada recently. How do I go about getting the GST refunded? I didn't go through customs to have the merchandize verified. But I've heard I could get a GST refund for hotel?

Please let me know which website to go to get a GST refund application.

JC98 is offline  
Old Aug 8th, 2003, 02:28 PM
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We came home with the tax form. My wife just now filled it out, included the receipts, I signed it, and put the envelope in the mail.

Try here:
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Old Aug 9th, 2003, 01:49 PM
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Yes, I hear that foreigners can get their hotel GST refunded. This was so conventions in Canada (Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver) could compete with low-tax American destinations. Mind you, this is the 7% Federal tax (GST) not the provincial add-ons.

Foregners and people from out-of-province can sometimes get PST refunds. PST generally is only refunded for merchandise, not hotels and such.

Last time I did this, I believe the rule in Ontario was that you had to spend $250 or $300 or something. Generally they look for some sort of proof you left the province relatively soon. I copied my VISA bill which showed gas charges too from Winnipeg 3 days after the purchase and my mailing address being Manitoba.

And of course, the forms for PST refunds will be in a different place from GST forms. Look for Government of Ontario. If you have stuff shipped instead of taking it, you may be able to avoid any taxes.
MD is offline  
Old Aug 9th, 2003, 03:44 PM
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We just returned from Montreal and we did go to the deTax place at the border and received our refund. Remember that while you pay 17% tax, you will not be refunded the entire 17%. And you have to spend more than $50 to be refunded, on shopping or hotel.
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Old Aug 9th, 2003, 06:39 PM
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No offense, but I found the other replies quite confusing. So I am going to copy and paste from
Please go to this website to print out the form. You must have acrobat reader:

Getting A Tax Refund
Visitor Tax Refund
If you are not a resident of Canada, you are elgible for a refund of the 7% goods and services tax (GST) you paid on your accommodations and on your purchases as long as they meet certain criteria.

You can claim a refund on short term accommodations, that is, accommodations you occupy less than one month. Accommodation receipts do not have to be validated.

You can claim a refund on items you buy and take out of the country. Anything you consume while in Canada or anything you leave in Canada is not elgible for a refund. Anything that remains in Canada for more than 60 days after you purchase it is not elgible for a refund.

To claim your refund, you must submit a form to the government and include all your ORIGINAL, receipts. Credit card receipts are not accepted. Receipts for goods must be validated.

You cannot submit any receipt that totals less than $50 before taxes, and you cannot get a tax refund if your purchases total less than $200 before taxes.
You can get a tax refund on half the cost of a tour.

You can get receipts validated by authorized Canadian Customs officials at airports and border crossings and at major BC duty free shops.

There are companies willing to submit tax refund forms for you. However, they keep about 20% of the refund, and you still have to do 90% of the work.

You can get more information here or a printable form here.
To read and print the refund form, you must have Acrobat Reader.

FromAtlanta is offline  
Old Aug 11th, 2003, 12:34 PM
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Botom Line: It's worth taking the few minutes downloading the GST/HST refund form from the Canadian Customs website. Note, many private companies contract with the canadian government to pay the refund but they will charge a commission. Obtaining the refund from the government is free (no commission). You know you're dealing with the gov't by the Customs address, which is in Summerside, PEI.

We've never had a problem getting our hotel GST/HST tax refunded - it takes about 6 weeks to get the check, which will be in US dollars and based on the official exchange rate. wd
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Old Aug 11th, 2003, 05:20 PM
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Waltd, the web address I gave has an official link to Canadian Customs website. (I am not sure if you thought otherwise) I just thought that bc-passport gave the "rules and regulations" in good terms quite easy to understand.) But I really have to agree with you-why pay someone for something you could do so easily by yourself!!
FromAtlanta is offline  
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