PSA to those travelling back to NZ from Australia: You Can Claim Back GST with The TRS

Not sure if this is well known in NZ, but most goods are cheaper already in Aus so you can get fairly good deals on a lot of goods if you happen to be visiting family over the silly season with GST refunded back to you.

Terms and conditions here:…

Related Stores


  • +2

    It can be a good deal, but you also run the gauntlet on the queue each time. Some days you walk straight to the front, and others will be a 1hr+ wait. So you have to hope for the best.
    The process is fairly easy. Show them the goods you’re taking out, the receipt confirming purchase, and they hand over the $$ (can’t remember if card or cash).
    I’ve done it several times (I’m there every month), but sometimes Sydney airport (particularly), is a mess and there’s no time.

    • +1

      Yep, have done it a few times in Sydney, same experience. Just get there with plenty of time. It was a few years ago that I did it last, and you could enter all your details into their (super clunky) app beforehand which can save time. Hopefully the app has improved, my recollection is that it was horrible, took several goes to finally get all the information in without losing it all and starting over.

      I don't think they hand over cash any more, it's either transferred to an Australian bank account or refunded to a credit card.

  • Another problem we had last time was we couldn't check in the luggage just in case they wanted to see the products (there were 5 of us carrying heaps of shopping)

    • +2

      They always want to see the physical items, it is the first condition on the list.

      What they do not make clear is that you can put them in your checked luggage if you go to the Australian Border Force Office at the airport before checking your luggage in. They will view the items but you still need to line up at the TRS office after passport control.

      In the "You Should" area of the link provided in the OP, there are links to individual airports. That tells you where to go at each airport.

      • I claimed Aus GST at TRS for a wall oven with a photo of it checked in one time.
        Being $1500 I declared it as over $700 item in my NZ custom entry form. Custom man spotted it was an oven while in line :)
        Since there was two of us they waved NZ GST as it was close to 2× $700 .

        The same F&P oven was $2700 in NZ :@

        • iirc they are also within their rights to charge GST at a rate of that if it was sold in NZ. ie it might have cost $1500NZD in AUS but they could charge GST at the rate of it's $2700NZD value in the local market(ie about $400).

          • +1

            @Dunno: I think you mean, if there was no invoiced purchase price they can charge the GST rate on the NZ price for the same item.

            I think customs was impressed that I pulled apart a wall oven and cling wrapped it so it was down to 32kg so I could take it as checked luggage. I think they thought I deserved the full$1000 saving for effort put in.
            I had to take the door and display panel off the oven to make the weight limit. ;)

  • +1

    Just don't go crazy with your purchases and get stung for GST and/or duty when you get to NZ. I believe the limit is $700 which is crazy low and really should be increased as it hasn't been in years

Login or Join to leave a comment