This week we had a discussion with our soon-to-be-former tax accountant. It turns out our tax bill is significantly larger than we expected. I have spent a few days in shock and now I’m desperately trying to save our travel plans. We are determined still to go to Europe, the question at this point is do we forge ahead in August or do we cancel and start again next year? It’s a very tough call. If we do go ahead, then the game plan on the trip will have changed significantly. We will be looking for much cheaper accommodation, transport and sigh seeing activities. It’s not going to be he holiday we imagined at all.
Don’t ask me how much we’ve spent on wasted passport photos – I might cry. It’s definitely a downside to have multiple citizenships. This web site however looks very promising – it allows you to size and download free compliant passport photos (based on different countries requirements). The hardest part is taking a photo with a plain white back ground and no shadows, after that the rest is easy.
1. It’s possible to pre-order duty free stuff for collection on arrival back in Melbourne.
“If the goods are to be brought back into Australia, please be aware that they may be subject to GST. Normal passenger concessions apply and include any items for which a TRS claim has been approved (excluding most personal items such as new clothing, footwear and articles for personal hygiene and grooming). If the value of those goods together with overseas purchases exceeds the passenger concession, the goods must be declared to Customs on your return to Australia. Penalties apply to undeclared taxable goods.”
If in doubt you should declare the goods to Customs on your return.
This is the really important bit…
3. For stuff that you already own and are not claiming TRS on, you need to fill in a form (we will need to do this with our iphones and cameras and widgets and wodgets)
This is the critical form to ensure that you don’t get stung with duty and GST for stuff you’ve already paid for. It means these items are not counted in your duty free allowance either.