I have recently imported books into Canada from Japan.

As I bought in excess of 5000¥, the purchase was tax free and the receipt was stapled to my passport and stamped.

Since I've now come back to Canada and no issues occurred with my imports, Is it safe to remove the receipts from my passport?

As it was stamped and stapled, there will remain a trace that something was there. Could this cause problems when I return to Japan at a later time?

  • 1
    Nice question. I am fairly sure that most will agree that the answer is yes, of course you can take the recepts out, but finding a reference to support that conclusion may be more difficult.
    – phoog
    Jun 21 '16 at 19:14
  • Who did this stamping and stapling? The vendor in Japan? Japanese customs? Canadian customs? Immigration? Someone else? Jun 21 '16 at 20:55
  • @Henning It was the vendor in Japan. The customs officer then verified it all when I passed at the customs.
    – JS Lavertu
    Jun 21 '16 at 21:23
  • Related: travel.stackexchange.com/questions/20154/…
    – JonathanReez
    Jun 21 '16 at 21:45
  • Incidentally, @hippietrail complained about stapled pieces of paper in Japan in that post :)
    – JonathanReez
    Jun 21 '16 at 22:09

It is safe to remove the receipts because you are supposed to return those receipts to the Japan Customs counters right after the passport control.

Submit the Proof of Tax-Free Purchase attached to your passport when leaving the country - (Offical) Japan. Tax-free Shopping Guide

This leads to another question: "what if I forget to return the receipts?".


Yes, it's safe to remove. Japan and quite a few other countries staple their departure cards to the passport, so immigration authorities are used to seeing staple holes on passport pages.

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