How to redeem your VAT
In Lebanon there are many opportunities to benefit from Tax Free Shopping, more than 1200 retail outlets are offering the service. The affiliated stores are displaying a well-known Tax Free Shopping logo, and helpful staff will guide you through the process. VAT refunds are processed by Global Refund company.
You pay 10% VAT on the purchases you make, the VAT rate is common in all registered shops no matter the type of goods. Tourists departing from Lebanon are entitled to a VAT refund on goods purchased during their stay. Every foreigner or Lebanese person residing abroad, and whose stay in Lebanon does not exceed three continuous months, is entitled to ask for a VAT refund. A VAT refund is not applicable to services (hotels, telecommunications, car hire, guided tours, flowers Lebanon
, etc.), Lebanese food
and beverage (restaurants, cafes, supermarkets), fuel, or tobacco.
Example: If you make your purchases on April 10th, you must leave the country no later than July 9th. Assuming you have spent the amount of LBP100,00 (around US$100) including VAT, the VAT amount will be LBP13,636 and the refund amount LBP11,000 which is always 80% of the VAT amount, after deduction of the handling expenses.
3 steps to claim back your VAT at Beirut International Airport or on the borders:
1- In the store:
. Shop where you see the "Tax Free Shopping" sign
. Simply ask for your Refund Cheque and shop invoice
. Spend at least LBP150,000 tax included per shop per day to qualify for VAT refund
2- Through customs show the following:
. Global Refund Cheque
. Purchases along with shop invoice
. Passport and a photocopy showing arrival and departure dates
Make sure you have your Global Refund Cheque stamped by customs' inspector. Slip all mentioned documents with a photocopy of your passport into Global Refund's mailbox to process your transaction.
3- To collect your refund you can choose between:
- Cash up to a limit of LBP750,000 (at the airport only)
- Transfer to credit card within 35 days
- Bank cheque sent to a chosen address