You can save up to an additional 9% or so on electronics, shoes, or clothes in the USA. Simply apply for a sales tax refund or shop in a state where the tax doesn’t apply. You can apply for a refund up to three years in advance. The time limit is calculated from the due date of the tax return, which is always in mid-April of the following year.
Where Sales Tax Does Not Apply in the USA
Taxes in the USA are levied at three levels – federal tax, state tax, and local tax. In some cities, only the federal tax is paid, while in others all three tax rates are added together.
In Alaska, while no sales tax is levied at the state level, local governments at the county level may impose a local tax of up to 7%.
In addition, many states operate tax holidays for a short part of the year (usually 2-7 days) when no sales tax is collected on items such as clothing, computers, etc. For tax holiday dates in 2023, see on TaxAdmin.org.
How to File for a USA Tax Refund
In Louisiana, you must shop at one of the stores offering tax refunds and present a passport. You can identify the appropriate stores by the round white, red, and blue sticker that says Louisiana Tax Free Shopping.
The clerk will add a tax refund voucher to your purchase, which you can redeem for cash at the New Orleans airport or in downtown Lafayette. For more information, visit LFTS.
In Texas, in addition to a receipt from a participating store and a passport, a airline ticket or other travel document is needed. You can get your refund at the airport and 10 other broker locations.
A Few Tips and Warnings
How to Shop in the USA Without Sales Tax
You can shop in the USA without sales tax through Shipito. With this service, you can order goods from a USA online store to an Oregon address and avoid paying state tax. Shipito will then ship the goods to any address in the USA or your home country.
U.S. Tax-Free, Your Home Country Tax Due
After arriving home or receiving the goods in the mail, you must clear customs and pay local VAT. I recommend reading the article Importing from the USA: Allowed Limits and When Duty and VAT Are Due.