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Dubai: Tourists on holiday to save hundreds of pounds in new scheme | Travel News | Travel

Dubai will allow tourists who shop in the country to claim back the VAT from their purchases from next month.

The new system, which will come into place from 18 November, will allow any visitors in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to partake in the Tax Refund for Tourists Scheme.

Anyone in Abu Dhabi, Dubai or Sharjah will be eligible for the changes at the airport.

It could save visitors hundreds of pounds when shopping abroad.

The move by The UAE Federal Tax Authority hopes to secure the region as a tourist destination and entice visitors to the country.

More than 4,000 retail stores will be connected to the system.

Travellers will need to keep their receipts and then claim back the tax when leaving the country.

Up to five per cent tax is put onto the items which can then be removed for tourists leaving the country.

FTA director general Khalid Ali Al Bustani said: “The electronic Tax Refund for Tourists Scheme, which is implemented by the FTA in collaboration with Planet, the global operator of the system, is currently being finalised.

“Implementing the tax refund scheme for tourists helps attract a larger numbers of tourists and allows them to enjoy the UAE’s unique tourism offering, especially in retail.”

The minimum spend is 250 dirhams (£52) per object and refunds must be claimed within 90 days.

The tax return can either be in cash or put back onto the credit card.

Tourists will also need to have their passports on them when shopping to upload their details into the shopping system.

Dubai has implemented a number of changes in recent months as the city becomes a popular holiday destination for tourists.

Tourist visas are to be free for children during the summer months, the peak season for British travellers.

Passengers under 18 years old will be exempt from a tourist visa.

Travellers can also purchase free transit visas when travelling through the busy Dubai airport.

This allows them 48 hours in the city without the need for a visa, making a stopover destination for families.

The changes will make it a much more affordable holiday for Britons.

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