I'm traveling in the US (originally from Australia) and buying a few things like shoes etc and a friend said I might be able to claim the tax back on my purchases. Does anyone know if this is right and if so how do I go about doing this?

  • possible duplicate of How to get a tax refund for purchase Apple Mac Accessories?
    – Karlson
    Commented May 27, 2012 at 12:57
  • 2
    It's a state by state thing. There is no federal VAT tax that you have in most other countries.
    – Karlson
    Commented May 27, 2012 at 12:58
  • Perhaps merging of these two questions. Otherwise, campo, please include which state your question is about.
    – rlab
    Commented May 27, 2012 at 13:40
  • California mostly I'd like to claim tax back on. Thanks everyone!!
    – campo
    Commented May 27, 2012 at 17:25
  • 1
    Alternatively, go to Oregon and you don't have to pay sales tax at all! It's nice being able to buy something in the US and know the amount you see on the shelf is the amount you'll be paying at the checkout :)
    – Sam
    Commented Oct 14, 2013 at 23:30

1 Answer 1


There are no state tax refunds to tourists in any of the US States except for Louisiana and Texas. In Louisiana there's a similar to the European "Tax Fee" program in effect, and tax refund can be done in the New Orleans airport or by mail for qualified purchases.

Texas also has a similar program available at participating stores.

  • 2
    Even the Louisiana program is only if you are catching an international flight directly out of Louisiana. ie, not connecting at another airport in the US. Last I looked there weren't too many flights from Louisiana to Australia :)
    – Doc
    Commented May 28, 2012 at 6:10
  • @Doc you can get refund by mail, though.
    – littleadv
    Commented May 28, 2012 at 6:11
  • @littleadv Please take a look at the question I linked. There is such thing as Sales Tax Refund it is done differently then in countries with VAT.
    – Karlson
    Commented May 28, 2012 at 19:30
  • @Karlson your answer there is wrong.
    – littleadv
    Commented May 29, 2012 at 0:13
  • 1
    and Texas taxfreetexas.com
    – user102008
    Commented Oct 15, 2013 at 9:47

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