Having been to Italy multiple times, I am used to getting the tax back for purchases above a certain price when leaving through the airport. Some articles mention that the UK have changed the details starting from this year.

Is it still possible to do?

1 Answer 1


No in Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales) and ‘maybe’ in Northern Ireland.

You can only buy tax-free goods from shops in Great Britain if they’re delivered straight to an address outside the UK. Check with the retailer if they offer this service.

You may be able to buy tax-free goods from some shops when you visit Northern Ireland. You claim your VAT refund when you leave Northern Ireland or the EU.

Source: https://www.gov.uk/tax-on-shopping/taxfree-shopping

  • 4
    Note that this is a semi-recent change, as the VAT Retail Export Scheme ended with Brexit: "Visitors from outside the EU were eligible for tax-free shopping until January 2021.". Since the UK had VAT refunds for visitors until this year, and many haven't traveled since the pandemic, you may still find references to the old program on some websites. Oct 23, 2021 at 17:07
  • 2
    Meanwhile, UK residents can now reclaim VAT on purchases in the EU…
    – jcaron
    Oct 23, 2021 at 22:24
  • 1
    And it all depends on whether the shop is willing to spend the effort on filling out the necessary forms. If you buy a £50 watch, likely not. If you buy a £5,000 watch, likely yes.
    – gnasher729
    Oct 25, 2021 at 7:01

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .