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Current customs stance on tax-free purchases 2017/10/19 21:33
On my Japan trip so far Ifve bought a couple of tech items, an Apple Watch and some Over-ear headphones. Now, I see reports online that I may need to show these to the guys when I go through customs.

Will this actually be the case as previously this hasnft been an issue for me when I brought a laptop back. Would the items need to be boxed up? Would it not be sufficient if I had the devices on me and the boxes in my checked luggage?
by Jami3rez  

Re: Current customs stance on tax-free purchases 2017/10/20 12:18
Your home country's tax authorities don't care a whit whether your items were purchased tax-free in Japan. Your country's tax laws always apply.
by Firas rate this post as useful

Re: Current customs stance on tax-free purchases 2017/10/20 12:25
And if you mean customs when exiting Japan (your question is not clear), then yes you must show the items to them to prove that you are bringing them out, and they must still be in the box, as it is illegal to buy an item tax-free and use it while still in Japan.
by Firas rate this post as useful

Re: Current customs stance on tax-free purchases 2017/10/20 15:03
Apologies, yes I did mean on leaving Japan. Thank you for the feedback!
by Jami3rez rate this post as useful

Re: Current customs stance on tax-free purchases 2017/10/23 18:26
I have bought many things tax free (clothes and electronics) over many years and I have never been asked to show them at Japan customs when departing. The official usually glances at the receipt and takes it out although sometimes they leave it in.

Maybe it depends on the the value.

But as mentioned you should have them unused with you and not checked-in just in-case they do ask. No idea what would happen if they ask you and you cannot show them. Maybe a fine but at worst I would guess they would ask you to pay back the tax amount.
by SZQ rate this post as useful

Re: Current customs stance on tax-free purchases 2017/10/23 21:05
In Europe you need to do the tax free procedure at the airport BEFORE checking in your luggage so that customs could control that you are really having the items with you.

Doesn't that rule apply vice-versa in Japan as well???

The likelihood to get asked to show the items is low.

But also consider the import rules in your country. As depending on country there are limits of how much value you can import from abroad and some countries check more aggressively specially on flights from countries where high value products are often bought.

( I know about people getting into trouble importing expensive camera equipment into Spain) and claiming that you actually brought it with you from Spain may terribly backfire as some items are only sold in Japan in that configuration and customs will know if they check specially.
by LikeBike rate this post as useful

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