Canada Sales Tax Refund For Visitors

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Steve CDN

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When visiting Canada,  you can claim a refund for goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) you paid on eligible goods and short-term accommodation while visiting Canada.

For information visit the Canadian Site for Tax Refund Information.

Is camping accommodation eligible for a refund?

Yes. Effective July 1, 1998, the tax paid on camping accommodation is eligible for a tax refund. Camping accommodation means a campsite at a recreational trailer park or campground and includes: water, electricity, waste disposal services, and charges for hook-ups when supplied with the campsite. You can claim a refund for a campsite that you rented for less than one month of continuous occupancy.   .....info taken from Tax Refund FAQ'S

ADDENDUM 10/16/2009

The Government of Canada has eliminated the GST/HST Visitor Rebate Program and announced the introduction of the Foreign Convention and Tour Incentive Program.  For more information see:

Canadian Revenue Agency
 

Len and Jo

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Thanks for the info.  We looked the supplied information over on our Nova Scotia trip last year and the way we read it, we thought our camping charges (taxes) were not refundable.  Since we 100% camped we had very little and never filed.  Some rainy day have to find our GST tax info and read it again.  Maybe they leave that out or in the fine print.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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You may have been looking at information supplied by one of the services that handles the refunds in your behalf.  They are often prominently displayed and made to look quasi-legal but in fact are just ads for a refund broker.  Those refund services do not always handle all types of refunds, even though they are legal.  Don't bother with the services - it's easy to file directly for your refund and the form is available online, by mail or at larger border crossings.

But you need receipts and the GST/HST should be shown separately on the receipt in order to have a valid claim.
 

Len and Jo

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Thanks,

We probably still have all receipts.  Might re-review them if we get time.

 

Tom

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Does this mean we can get out GST back after the visit?

I recall the UK having something similar, and a visitor was given a mail slot at the airport to drop off their claims. You were also required to produce a special form that had to be completed by the store at the time of purchase. Even if you were smart enough to know ahead of time that you needed the form, only the large department stores knew anything about it or had a supply of forms on hand. I haven't bothered using that dumb system in a long time, but maybe they've since changed it.
 

Steve CDN

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If you qualify under the conditions outlined and are still within the time limit, go ahead and downlaod the application form the Canadian Government site in the first message of this discussion.? As Gary indicated, hotel lobbies frequently display pamphlets from refund brokers, that do look surprisingly official...but contain all kinds of restrictions and conditions.? ?I picked up a brochure like that this past week here in town, thinking it was the official Govenment form.

Another option for folks leaving Canada is to get the refund at one of the Duty Free shops on the Canadian side of the border which provide the service free of charge..IOW they don't take a commission and give you the full refund.
 

Tom

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Thanks Steve. There's a (generous) 1-year time limit, so I still qualify.
 

Lisa

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Just an update, the Canada Sales Tax Refund for Visitors changed earlier this year and camping no longer qualifies.
 

Jeff

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Nothing qualified in BC, they cancelled the refunds early this year. We found out after showing up at the border with about 100.00 in refunds due.
 

Betty Brewer

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We entered Canada in May of 06 and drove through Canada to enter  Alaska and returned to USA  via Canada in September of 06 after touring Alaska all summer.  I had receipts of every imaginable  size and shape and mailed them in after following the directions very carefully.    I was hoping to qualify for just over $100 in  Canadian tax refund.  Alas they disallowed many items  and  sent me a check for just over $50 four months later.  Better than nothing but lots of  picky paperwork to verify.  It may have been easier to present my receipts at the border crossing  customs area but there was no place to park a 40 foot Motorhome with a tow vehicle .  We barely cleared the border crossing gates.

I do love discounts.

Betty
 

Betty Brewer

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John In Detroit said:
There should be a truck lot you can park in at the crossing.

Yeah well where we crossed there was room for ONE motorhome in that spot and it was taken.  Believe me you don't go driving around looking for a place to park at the border in our rig.  We choose little quiet places to cross borders.  So we mailed in the paper work. All part of the fun of travels.

BB
 

Steve CDN

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There should be a truck lot you can park in at the crossing.

My experience with border crossings is that motorhomes are not permitted in the commercial truck areas.

As for clearing the border passage ways,  improvements are slowly being made as crossings are being upgraded and rebuilt.  There will usually be a sign ( at both U.S. and Canadian ) crossings to indicate where motorhomes and RV's are cleared. 

Unless specifically directed to use a truck lane, truck lanes should not be used and doing so can result in being refused passage, requiring backing up and using the correct lane.
 

threeful

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I tried using the above link but it took me to an expired site. 

I recently returned from Canada after a several week visit and I have several hundred dollars of sales taxes that I paid.  How do I go about requesting the reimbursement.  Forms, instructions, etc.

Thanks,

Bill T
 

Jeff

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threeful said:
I tried using the above link but it took me to an expired site. 

I recently returned from Canada after a several week visit and I have several hundred dollars of sales taxes that I paid.  How do I go about requesting the reimbursement.  Forms, instructions, etc.

Thanks,

Bill T

As I mentioned above we were told the refund program was cancelled as of 4/1/2007. More details here . If you have receipts dated before April 1st they will be honored.
 

Ron

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Jeff Cousins said:
As I mentioned above we were told the refund program was cancelled as of 4/1/2007. More details here . If you have receipts dated before April 1st they will be honored.

Must be your fault Jeff.  That would be my luck too.  Cancel the refunds just before I would use em. ;D ;D
 

Johann_M_13

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Thank you so much for the information. I am from the United States and have never crossed the border to Canada, unfortunately. I have gone up to the beautiful state of Montana and it's a glorious place, I can't imagine how amazing Canada must be. I have only heard good things from people that have taken their RV there. I hope to do it by this summer and this information will be highly useful.

Best,

Johann
 

Hfx_Cdn

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    Johann look at the date of the original post (2005).  Unfortunately, Canada no longer rebates GST.  But come for a visit anyway, there is a 25% exchange bonus US versus CDN dollar, with most things comparatively priced, the major exceptions being gas, alcohol and tobacco.

Ed
 

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