Govt cracks down on airport TRS rebates for Aust travellers

Status
Not open for further replies.

blackcat20

Enthusiast
Joined
Jan 7, 2011
Posts
12,586
While it's available to Australians then I'm happy to take advantage. I claimed my phone last year. We also claimed our wedding rings. Both were below the $900 threshold (x2) when we re-entered the country.
 

AisleSeat

Established Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2016
Posts
1,454
I guess this hits single travellers more. Whenever we purchase something and claim TRS, its always on a family holiday, so on the way back, we pool the allowance.
 

kpc

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2003
Posts
7,194
Qantas
Platinum
Virgin
Platinum
For me the main issue is the long Q times to get the TRS processed esp in Syd. With the app, it takes me about 2 mins but the Qs can be horrendous in the am in Syd, eating into valuable lounge time. I know the customs officials actually hate processing TRS and this could be the deal breaker as the cost to process TRS will only get higher and higher...before it is enhanced I too take advantage of it :)
 
Sponsored Post

This is an example of a Sponsored Post, one of the many ways you can advertise on the Australian Frequent Flyer.

Other options include banner advertisements on our content and forum pages or our newsletter. You can also purchase an audio message on our podcast - or if you just want to try it out, you can sponsor a thread.

If you'd prefer not to see any advertisements (including these sponsored posts), you can become an AFF Supporter from just $6 and instantly remove all advertisements from our website!

OZDUCK

Established Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2010
Posts
2,834
For me the main issue is the long Q times to get the TRS processed esp in Syd. With the app, it takes me about 2 mins but the Qs can be horrendous in the am in Syd, eating into valuable lounge time. I know the customs officials actually hate processing TRS and this could be the deal breaker as the cost to process TRS will only get higher and higher...before it is enhanced I too take advantage of it :)

I was still working in Customs when the TRS was introduced and my memory is that the processing was not something the department, including the senior management, wanted to do. The government put it out to tender but the quotes from private operators were so high that we were lumbered with the job.
 

drron

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2002
Posts
30,364
And this paragraph is a potential problem.
Return to Australia with goods subject to the Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS) provisions
If you return to Australia with goods for which you have claimed a GST refund under the TRS on departure, you must declare those goods at Question 3 on the Incoming Passenger Card (IPC) if their value exceeds the passenger concession of AUD900.

GST refunds received on goods exceeding the passenger concession will have to be repaid if the items are brought into Australia.

So if you get a TRS refund on clothing on the basis of that paragraph you must declare them on return.It is what I have always thought.
 

JessicaTam

Enthusiast
Moderator
Joined
Jan 29, 2012
Posts
15,797
Qantas
LT Gold
Virgin
Red
If I claim TRS on the way out and the purchase price is more than $900 I always declare it. Sometimes I have been questioned further about the items and how long I have been away (sometimes only 24-48 hours :rolleyes:), but have never been charged duty.

If I am charged then it is only fair.
 

Princess Fiona

Enthusiast
Moderator
Joined
May 22, 2009
Posts
11,383
Qantas
Platinum 1
For me the main issue is the long Q times to get the TRS processed esp in Syd. With the app, it takes me about 2 mins but the Qs can be horrendous in the am in Syd, eating into valuable lounge time. I know the customs officials actually hate processing TRS and this could be the deal breaker as the cost to process TRS will only get higher and higher...before it is enhanced I too take advantage of it :)
The last time I left SYD in January the queue was so long even for the App process that I stood for all of two minutes and then thought my lounge time was too valuable to waste for $90 :D
 

Matt_01

Established Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Posts
4,021
I will claim whenever possible but always try and keep under the $900. A while back I mentioned the whole TRS thing to MrsM who is not a regular traveler, needless to say I ended up traveling with a few different 'man purses' and 'man bags'. ;)
 

bwhouse

Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2015
Posts
255
As per above, its a quite separate allowance and scheme from duty free. That's stuff bought outside the country (or airside at the airport :)) and them imported. The TRS scheme is a refund of GST on goods already purchased because they are being exported. Its designed for bona fide tourists on the theory that they won't benefit from GST collected, so they get it back. if done by Australians, with full intent of re-importing and avoiding GST, beyond the $900 allowed, then that's not OK in my book.

I was under the impression that it was the exact same scheme as duty free. Afterall in almost all cases duty-free is just less GST. If you buy an item worth more than $900 (- depreciation) in a duty free store airside at the airport and bring it back into the country you should also be ticking the same box on the customs declaration and be eligible to re-pay the duty. The only 'issue' with TRS is it makes it more accessible to more purchases.
 

Princess Fiona

Enthusiast
Moderator
Joined
May 22, 2009
Posts
11,383
Qantas
Platinum 1
I was under the impression that it was the exact same scheme as duty free. Afterall in almost all cases duty-free is just less GST. If you buy an item worth more than $900 (- depreciation) in a duty free store airside at the airport and bring it back into the country you should also be ticking the same box on the customs declaration and be eligible to re-pay the duty. The only 'issue' with TRS is it makes it more accessible to more purchases.

This...........
(Dots to fill up the minimum character requirement)
 

Isochronous

Established Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2009
Posts
4,818
Clothing also depreciates in value the moment you wear it, so arguably that could be factored into the equation.
 

Cynicor

Established Member
Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Posts
3,884
@RooFlyer - there is no declaration on claiming TRS. It's 2 seperate transactions, effectively- leaving the country and getting a GST refund, then re-entering with something that is now duty-free. So you declare on re-entry, and can get in trouble for not declaring anything, not just the TRSd goods.
 

jetpack

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2014
Posts
393
If you are planning on declaring the goods on arrival back in to Australia presumably with the intention of paying back the GST can I ask why you would bother claiming TRS in the first place?

Are you hoping the customs officer wouldn't bother charging you? Based on the stories in this thread it doesn't sound like customs can be bothered processing these anyway in which case there really is no crackdown as the thread title suggests.
 

RooFlyer

Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 12, 2012
Posts
20,451
Qantas
Platinum
@RooFlyer - there is no declaration on claiming TRS. It's 2 seperate transactions, effectively- leaving the country and getting a GST refund, then re-entering with something that is now duty-free. So you declare on re-entry, and can get in trouble for not declaring anything, not just the TRSd goods.

Ah, OK .. like I said up-thread, I've never done it - it was an assumption on my part. So you just rock up to the TRS counter, hand over receipts and they give you the GST back, literally no questions asked?

I still remain my objection in general to Australians using the Tourist Refund Scheme. GST is charged on goods and services in Australia to fund a big slice of the state's bills. I don't think non bona fide tourists should be able to use it.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

blackcat20

Enthusiast
Joined
Jan 7, 2011
Posts
12,586
If you are planning on declaring the goods on arrival back in to Australia presumably with the intention of paying back the GST can I ask why you would bother claiming TRS in the first place?

Are you hoping the customs officer wouldn't bother charging you? Based on the stories in this thread it doesn't sound like customs can be bothered processing these anyway in which case there really is no crackdown as the thread title suggests.

Because a lot of items will be under the $900 cap when you return, so you wouldnt need to declare them anyway.
 

Denali

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 17, 2012
Posts
6,517
Ah, OK .. like I said up-thread, I've never done it - it was an assumption on my part. So you just rock up to the TRS counter, hand over receipts and they give you the GST back, literally no questions asked?

I still remain my objection in general to Australians using the Tourist Refund Scheme. GST is charged on goods and services in Australia to fund a big slice of the state's bills. I don't think non bona fide tourists should be able to use it.
Ive not claimed but my husband has a a couple of times, usually camera related.

He goes to the counter with receipts and he has the item in his backpack to show them and refund credited to his nominated bank account/card.

Ive seen quite a few people doing it with some very expensive designer bags/clothing so for them it would be worth a couple of hundred dollars.

Its not my thing so not done it.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

bwhouse

Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2015
Posts
255
Ah, OK .. like I said up-thread, I've never done it - it was an assumption on my part. So you just rock up to the TRS counter, hand over receipts and they give you the GST back, literally no questions asked?

I still remain my objection in general to Australians using the Tourist Refund Scheme. GST is charged on goods and services in Australia to fund a big slice of the state's bills. I don't think non bona fide tourists should be able to use it.

Pretty much, they do usually remind you (if the item is over $900) that you have to declare the items if you bring them back in.

If you object to TRS then do you also object to airport duty free? Agree TRS is named poorly but it is the same thing.

The issue isn't people abusing theTRS scheme, it is people not declaring things on the way back into the country and as someone else pointed out. if you buy a shiny MacBook or camera overseas then you also need to declare that on the way back in (which I bet most people do not)
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Status
Not open for further replies.

Enhance your AFF viewing experience!

From just $6 we'll remove all advertisements so that you can enjoy a cleaner and uninterupted viewing experience.

And you'll be supporting us so that we can continue to provide this valuable resource :)


Sample AFF with no advertisements? More..

Staff online

Top