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Old 20.09.2011, 14:33
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Shopping in the US

Can I just get some confirmation that US sales tax is NOT the same as VAT; ie I cannot claim it back on leaving the country.
Secondly, would a US-purchased MacBook charger work in Europe (with the correct pin attachment, naturally); is there a 120V vs 220V power issue?
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:36
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Can I just get some confirmation that US sales tax is NOT the same as VAT; ie I cannot claim it back on leaving the country.
Secondly, would a US-purchased MacBook charger work in Europe (with the correct pin attachment, naturally); is there a 120V vs 220V power issue?
Yes you would be able to use the charger, just need the plug converter (apple has them but more expensive then the one at Migros Do It)

I just packed (well only 2 set of clothes, need space on the way back) my suitcase, of to the US tomorrow to....shop oh and visit very dear friends
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:39
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Can I just get some confirmation that US sales tax is NOT the same as VAT; ie I cannot claim it back on leaving the country.
Sales tax in the US is a state thing, not federal.

If the airport by which you leave the USA is in the same state as that where you bought the stuff you can claim it, otherwise you can't. That's my understanding at least.
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:42
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Sales tax in the US is a state thing, not federal.

If the airport by which you leave the USA is in the same state as that where you bought the stuff you can claim it, otherwise you can't. That's my understanding at least.
OK, that's interesting then. We'll be flying in and out of JFK and staying (and doing all our shopping) in NYC. Would you know where I can get some concrete information?
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:46
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Re: Shopping in the US

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. Would you know where I can get some concrete information?

https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/det...-united-states
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:48
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Re: Shopping in the US

Thanks grynchy.

Buggerit
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:51
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Secondly, would a US-purchased MacBook charger work in Europe (with the correct pin attachment, naturally); is there a 120V vs 220V power issue?
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Yes you would be able to use the charger, just need the plug converter (apple has them but more expensive then the one at Migros Do It)
Just to confirm ... every charger that I have seen is 110-220 volts 50/60 Hz.
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:55
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Re: Shopping in the US

Ooooh! I'm so jealous of anyone going on a shopping trip in the US! Every time I go back there, I feel like a kid in a candy store.

Have fun!
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:55
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Just to confirm ... every charger that I have seen is 110-220 volts 50/60 Hz.
Yep



My Macbook Charger (Dutch) is labeled : 100-240 volts. I have found that all my Apple products work in the US and Netherlands/Switzerland so only a plug converter is necessarily .
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:55
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Re: Shopping in the US

If you use iTunes, stock up on iTunes cards. Then you can use a US account which is usually cheaper and with more films and TV series.
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:56
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Re: Shopping in the US

P.S. I used my US-bought laptop here in CH with an adapter plug (that doesn't have a converter), and it worked just fine...
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:56
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Re: Shopping in the US

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If you use iTunes, stock up on iTunes cards. Then you can use a US account which is usually cheaper and with more films and TV series.
ohh... I've just decided on what to ask my family for for Christmas.
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:56
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Re: Shopping in the US

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If you use iTunes, stock up on iTunes cards. Then you can use a US account which is usually cheaper and with more films and TV series.
Wouldn't I have to set up a US iTunes account though?
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:56
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Ooooh! I'm so jealous of anyone going on a shopping trip in the US! Every time I go back there, I feel like a kid in a candy store.

Have fun!
Even better...I will be kid and OH free!! Just 5 days of shopping and chatting with my two other husbands!!!
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:57
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Wouldn't I have to set up a US iTunes account though?
Yes I would love to have the answer to that one as well!
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:57
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Ooooh! I'm so jealous of anyone going on a shopping trip in the US! Every time I go back there, I feel like a kid in a candy store.

Have fun!
Believe me, we will be travelling "light" on the way out.
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:58
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Wouldn't I have to set up a US iTunes account though?
yes, hence the reason for gift cards.

or go to www.thepiratebay.org of course. No gift cards necessary....
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Old 20.09.2011, 14:59
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Re: Shopping in the US

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Yep



My Macbook Charger (Dutch) is labeled : 100-240 volts. I have found that all my Apple products work in the US and Netherlands/Switzerland so only a plug converter is necessarily .
possibly not even that as (on mine at least) the plug bit of the power adapter comes off and you can replace it by a European one and so avoid having to lug an additional adapter around. I got mine on eBay for 1 Euro, which is also cheaper than any plug adapter.
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Old 20.09.2011, 15:00
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Re: Shopping in the US

According to the link above, state sales tax is not refunded to foreign visitors....unless you are possibly buying a car, which is not going to fit in your suitcase.

If you go to Macy's, you can get a 10 percent discount card at the visitors desk.
And if you are really nice to sales staff in some stores and tell them the long story about how you miss America and have to come back to shop and see your friends, sometimes you can get a discount on your purchases. Most managers have the ability to make discretionary discounts. You are, after all, helping the economy.
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Old 20.09.2011, 15:04
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Re: Shopping in the US

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According to the link above, state sales tax is not refunded to foreign visitors....unless you are possibly buying a car, which is not going to fit in your suitcase.
The link doesn't say that. It just says that federal agencies don't refund sales tax.

I bought my MacBook in Cary NC and the shop gave me a special certificate which they told me I could get money for at the airport, but when we did get to the airport we were short on time so didn't bother.

I also bought a camera in New Orleans but they told me I could only get the refund if I left through a LA airport, which I didn't.

Oh, and I think the other condition was not being resident in the USA, which I would have had to prove.

On the other hand I have learnt not to believe everything that people in shops tell me. Some shopkeers will heap on the BS when they can smell a sale.
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