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id4elizabeth

Tax Refund

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OK - so I think I have some good news. After being disinvited for dinner, disinvited from the warm VIP lounge in the Radisson Blu, and disinvited from the complementary Norwegian farm tour in Stavanger, Viking told me some good news that I will share. I'm skeptical of any piece of info at this point but wanted you to know just in case.

 

Supposedly in the port terminal in Oslo there will be a Norwegian customs agent who will refund your Norwegian sales tax if you bought something expensive while in Norway. I bought a wool sweater and got a special custom's refund slip.

 

I had talked to our crack Explorer's Desk about this once 2 days ago and they claimed total ignorance. Asked a second time when 3 stores told me the same story. But this time The Owner's Daughter was standing there at the ED and when the staff person started giving me the same line, she interrupted and said "of course - they would get right on this." Lo and behold they did - or at least the ED is telling me that. So have your paperwork ready in Oslo and who knows, some of us who've helped the Norwegian economy along may get some of those Krona back...

 

Saw a wonderful performance of what I think was the National anthem off our balcony and fireworks fired off from the ship. We're still afloat, no fires to report and I'm going to post this before I lose the WiFi as the VIPS come back aboard.

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This happened to me last year when I bought a Swiss watch at Lucerne and I had to show the purchase invoice etc at the Switzerland/ Austrian border. The difference was though, that the tax had been refunded when I purchased the item, the border just confirms the transaction. It is common in Europe and basically their 'duty free'process.

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OK - so I think I have some good news. After being disinvited for dinner, disinvited from the warm VIP lounge in the Radisson Blu, and disinvited from the complementary Norwegian farm tour in Stavanger, Viking told me some good news that I will share.

 

I read about all the "disinvitations" regarding dinner and the ceremony but I did not here how you were uninvited to the farm tour.

 

How did Viking screw up that one?

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The Farm Tour was in the same letter as the other 'invitations'. I'm thus assuming that the Farm Tour was for the real VIPS and not the paying passengers.

 

Re the tax refund, I was told by 3 stores that this is a Norwegian tax that has to be claimed when you leave Norway. We don't get off the ship until Stockholm and I was told you could not do this at the Stockholm airport as the Swedes would not refund a Norwegian tax. Which makes perfect sense. They told me a custom's official usually boards the ship to refund the tax, but OK by me if I have to go into the Oslo port terminal. At least The Owner's Daughter (sorry I don't know her name) got the custom's official to the port. I can easily stop by a desk at the port. Would be handy to know WHEN this custom's official will be there, cause knowing my luck, it will be when we're on a Viking tour. Good thing I really, really like my sweater, matching hat and gloves. Looks very Norwegian. Wore the hat on our balcony tonight.

 

Dare I say this, but the people in the VIP section looked very, very cold! Some empty chairs - guess most of them were in the Radisson staying warm in the VIP Lounge there. Glad I was where I was in the end.

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I will be at the Star Theatre at 10 AM on Monday for the special 6-hour farm tour. I guess I'm a glutton for punishment... I hope other 50-day passengers decide to come, too.

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Elizabeth......"crack Explorers desk" . That is their new title now...lol!!!:D

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We sailed Norway with Oceania. At the last Norway port, a VAT refund desk was set up on the ship. In a cardboard shoebox they had Krona, Dollars, Sterling and Euros to issue cash VAT refunds.

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I have a similar tax issue/ question I need to solve. We accumulated several EU tax refunds in the earlier segments. Our last port call in the EU is Tallinn, Estonia I think. The rules say that

1) you have to get the custom's agent stamp at your point of departure from the EU

2) You have to seek the refund in 60 days from purchase

3) You have the haver goods available for inspection in new unused conditions

 

Of course many of us with EU purchases may also fly through an EU airport from Stockholm Sweeden, but many of may not have time to to the custom's agent in that EU airport and others of us may not be flying through an EU airport.

So for us (we are not flying through an EU airport), I see two options:

1) Get custom's agent stamp in our last EU port of call (Tallinn Estonia I think)

or

2) Get it done in Stockholm is the Sweedish custom's agent stamp will qualify as an EU custom's stamp.

 

It is this latter option that I am the most uncertain about.

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Good thing I really, really like my sweater, matching hat and gloves. Looks very Norwegian. Wore the hat on our balcony tonight.

 

Oh, I'm really looking forward to shopping for a Norwegian sweater, id4elizabeth. Where did you find yours? Cost? I'm looking for a "trim fit" one (even if it doesn't fit me after all the great food I'm anticipating on the Star...at least I have several months to offload the extra treat inches before I'll need the sweater next fall...) with a bit of style to it.

 

I'm also looking forward to answers to CrusinSubMan's tax refund question...although we head out via Frankfurt (from Oslo), I *know* from previous experience there's not enough time to make that paperwork exchange happen there. And, besides, I'd really like to pack *away* that new Norwegian sweater, not have it accessible in my carry-on to prove its existence and

newness...

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I bought my sweater etc in the first shop you come to along the main street as you're going into town from the pier in Bergen. You'll first pass along the fortress walls, then a couple office buildings, they a grey building that says souvenirs and sweaters. I shopped another couple places (including Flam) and didn't like them as well. The ones in this store are lined which I liked instead of the wool directly against the skin. And they are merino wool. I paid 1,090 Krona from which I hope to get 245 Krona back. If so, that would be a bit less than $100 USD. The style is patterned classical Norwegian but the had different styles and colors. About half the shop was Sweaters and the other half souvenirs. Wyndfjord I think was the name. Not near my cabin at the moment. If name of store is dramatically different, will repost name.

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Winnford or something like that for the sweater but most of the shops on that stretch with the historic buildings has them. I got one for 695 krone which is about 95 us. My mom got one in the winnford shop and paid 1390 krone. We both love them.

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Norway isn't a member of the EU, which is possibly why these transactions need to be done before travelling further?

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In the Viking Daily tonight was a blurb about the tax refund desk in the Oslo port terminal. It will be open starting at 6:30 pm. Yeh! We now have a time in addition to location. Brilliant!

 

Based admittedly on only one data point, I think any more MAJOR issues I have (mainly surrounding money) I will ask The Owner's Daughter. She seems to get results! Hope she's on until Stockholm. If Viking could communicate like this on other issues my cynicism might vanish. I'm not being sarcastic here (I know it's sometimes difficult to tell) but I asked yesterday, and today we have place, date, time and results. Really great!

 

I will NOT go ask her about my iced tea, I promise.

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[quote name=id4elizabeth;46581509

Re the tax refund' date=' I was told by 3 stores that this is a Norwegian tax that has to be claimed when you leave Norway. We don't get off the ship until Stockholm and I was told you could not do this at the Stockholm airport as the Swedes would not refund a Norwegian tax. Which makes perfect sense. They told me a custom's official usually boards the ship to refund the tax, but OK by me if I have to go into the Oslo port terminal. At least The Owner's Daughter (sorry I don't know her name) .[/quote]

 

Elizabeth,

Tor's daughter's name is Karine Hagen. I bought a couple of the childrens' books she wrote which they sold on the Viking river cruise ships. (I think they may also have them on the Star). Not sure how you pronounce her name, tho'.

Becki

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Elizabeth,

Tor's daughter's name is Karine Hagen. I bought a couple of the childrens' books she wrote which they sold on the Viking river cruise ships. (I think they may also have them on the Star). Not sure how you pronounce her name, tho'.

Becki

 

Becki,

I hope when you have some time you will write a trip review with reviews of your ports of call. I loved you daily updates when you were on board. You had lots of great information for future passengers who visit these ports.

Under review at the top of page is member reviews by ship, there are six reviews so far for Viking Star. I didn't see any port reviews for this sailing.

Edited by Azulann

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Becki,

I hope when you have some time you will write a trip review with reviews of your ports of call. I loved you daily updates when you were on board. You had lots of great information for future passengers who visit these ports.

Under review at the top of page is member reviews by ship, there are six reviews so far for Viking Star. I didn't see any port reviews for this sailing.

 

Ann,

Thank you so much for your kind words! I was just thinking today that I should do a review, so you have given me the push I needed. :).

 

Becki

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Here is what I have figured out/ learned about EU tax refunds.

Sweden is a member of the EU and so you can do all your EU tax refunds when you exit the EU at Sweden.

The three primary countries that are not EU members are Norway, Switzerland and Turkey. So for those three you have to do it when leaving those countries.

 

While I am pleased that we can do them in Sweden, this also means you need to plan for this in terms of time at the airport on the 30th. We made our own travel arrangements so, for us, this is easy to control. But if you had Viking provide your air then you need to ensure they get you on an early enough of a bus before your flights.

 

Here is a link to a map of Terminal 5 at Arlanda showing both the location of the custom's agent and also Global Blue's two refund desks locations in Terminal 5. It also lists the hours for the two Global Blue desks (which is different then the hours for the custom's desk.). I was not able to find hours for the Custom's desk (yet).

 

 

http://www.globalblue.com/customer-services/tax-free-shopping/refund-points/sweden/stockholm-arlanda-terminal-52/

Edited by CrusinSubMan

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I have a beautiful Dale of Norway pullover sweater that I have had for many years, but this is the company some of you have been talking about on this thread.

 

http://www.windfjord.com

 

I'll have to put it on my list of souvenirs to bring back!

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Stood in line at the pier terminal for 45 minutes with my fellow Star passengers getting my refund back. Make sure you've gotten the right paperwork from the store when you make your purchase. I did not get the right kind of refund receipt at the Folks Museum store today in Oslo so could not get a refund for that, but did get my BIG purchase refund. They would give it to you in Euros or USD but not in Norwegian Krona. They would also credit back your credit card but the official behind the desk did not recommend this because if anything goes wrong there's little you can do to fix it. But I did get my tax back!

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Stood in line at the pier terminal for 45 minutes with my fellow Star passengers getting my refund back. Make sure you've gotten the right paperwork from the store when you make your purchase. I did not get the right kind of refund receipt at the Folks Museum store today in Oslo so could not get a refund for that, but did get my BIG purchase refund. They would give it to you in Euros or USD but not in Norwegian Krona. They would also credit back your credit card but the official behind the desk did not recommend this because if anything goes wrong there's little you can do to fix it. But I did get my tax back!

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