Frequently Asked Questions

Legal Information & Notices

About Tax-Free

Tax-free shopping is the purchasing of goods in a foreign country and obtaining a tax refund for the value-added tax (VAT) or goods and services tax (GST) paid for them.

You are eligible for a tax refund if you are visiting a country as a tourist and are not a resident of that country. For the EU region, you are only eligible for a tax refund if you are a resident of a non-EU country.

Most shops will allow you to shop tax-free. You can look out for display signs in shop windows that say ‘tax-free’ or ‘VAT/GST-free’. If you are not sure, you can ask the shop assistant to confirm if you can shop tax-free there.

Yes, you will need to show your passport (and possibly any other identity document with your residential address) to prove that you reside outside of the country.

Each Tax Refund Operator has a different set of instructions for you to follow and claim your tax refund. You will need the following:
  • Your passport
  • Completed Tax Free Forms
  • Sales receipts or invoices of the goods purchased
When you head to Customs before departure, you will need these documents to be verified. You should also have your purchased and unused goods with you in case they are required for inspection at Customs. You need to ensure that you receive a stamp on your Tax Free Forms or a digital ‘Customs verification’ to be able to have your refund processed.

No, you will need the Tax Free Form along with the sales receipts or invoices from the shop to complete the tax refund process.

utu Tax Free App

utu Tax-Free app is a revolutionary tax-free app for anyone who wishes to upsize their tax refund in the form of Frequent Flyer Miles or in the form of cash credited to their payment card.

For information on utu Tax Free product, please visit the utu Tax Free Card page.

utu Tax Free is available for download on the Apple App Store & Google Play Store.

If your app keeps crashing, try closing and reopening it. If that does not work, check for and install the most recent version of the utu Tax Free app. If the problem persists, contact us via utu Support with the following information:

  1. Mobile device model and version
  2. utu Tax Free app version

utu Tax Free Card

utu Tax Free Card is a virtual card for tourists to upsize their tax refunds on any Tax Free Form in 50 countries. utu Tax Free card can be activated in the utu Tax Free app and has a validity of 58 months. The utu Tax Free Card allows you to receive your tax refunds via two refund methods:

  • 25% upsize of your tax refund value in Frequent Flyer Miles from utu’s airline partners
  • Up to 5% more tax refund on your payment card when you shop in countries that use the Euro (€)

The utu Tax Free Card can only be used for receiving tax refunds and is not a credit or prepaid card.

To shop tax-free with utu Tax Free Card, you must activate your utu Tax Free card on the utu Tax Free App. You can choose a Frequent Flyer Program or a Payment Card as your preferred refund method. With utu Tax Free Card, you’ll be able to upsize your tax refund with any Tax Free Form across 50 countries.

You will be able to enjoy a 25% upsize of your tax refund in Frequent Flyer Miles in the following 50 countries:

Australia, Austria, Argentina, Bahrain, Bahamas, Bosnia, Belarus, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, UAE, Uruguay

Alternatively, you will be able to receive up to 5% more tax refund on your payment card when you choose it as your preferred refund method and shop in these 19 Eurozone countries:

Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain.

utu Tax Free Card is a virtual card that allows you to upsize your tax refunds. Here’s how to use it when shopping tax-free:
  1. Activate your utu Tax Free Card
  2. Fill in your utu Tax Free Card number into the credit card refund field of a Tax Free Form, or a refund kiosk depending on the Tax Refund Operator. In some cases, you will be required to input the expiry date
  3. For the rest of the tax refund process, follow customs formalities as instructed by the respective Tax Refund Operator
  4. Once your tax refund has been processed, utu will notify you when it has been credited to your preferred refund method
Follow these few steps and you’re ready to go. Upsizing your tax refund has never been easier. Reminder: The tax refund will only be credited to an active utu Tax Free Card. The utu Tax Free Card number must be entered into the credit card field of the Tax Free Form from any Tax Refund Operator.

utu Tax Free Card is a specially designed card that aims to give you more on your tax-free shopping in 19 European countries. In Europe, tax-free operators usually charge high foreign exchange fees (typically between 5-8% of the refund amount) when they refund you in your home currency. utu Tax Free Card ensures you do not get charged with these high fees and instead, returns more to you.

The 5% upsize is applicable only when you choose a non-EU (€) issued payment card to receive your tax refund.

To activate utu Tax Free Card on the utu Tax Free app, follow these simple steps:

  1. Scan your passport
  2. Submit a selfie for verification
  3. Choose your preferred refund method
  4. Enter promo code, if any
  5. Use a valid payment card for validation charge of €1.99 to activate the card
  6. The validation charge will be reversed upon your first refund transaction.

utu Tax Free Card will be valid for 58 months from the date of activation and you will be notified to renew it before expiry.

The 16-digit virtual card number can be found under the utu Card page once you tap on Show card details.

Your transaction history can be found under the utu Card page when you tap on Activity.

utu supports all currencies of the 50 countries that utu Tax Free Card is applicable to process your refunds.

If you have chosen to receive your refund as cash credited to your payment card, utu will refund it to you in your home currency if it is listed below.

AUD, CAD, CHF, CNY, GBP, JPY, HKD, SGD, THB, NZD, USD

If your home currency is not on the list, utu will credit your refund to your payment card in USD which will then be converted to your home currency at the daily conversion rate.

utu supports the following payment card schemes:

Visa Credit Card, Visa Debit Card, Visa Electron, MasterCard Credit Card, MasterCard Debit Card

Note: utu does not support pre-paid cards for refunds.

Tax refunds may take 3-6 weeks from Customs verification depending on the Tax Refund Operator. After receiving your tax refund, utu will credit the refund to your preferred refund method.

No. utu Tax Free Card can only be used for receiving tax refunds and is not a credit or prepaid card.

  1. For the passport scan, use your actual passport, not a photocopy or image
  2. Take a clear photo of your passport, making sure to turn off the flash to avoid glares
  3. Crop the picture and only send in the biodata page
  4. Make sure to take the photo in a well-lit area

Upon activating your utu Tax Free Card, you automatically unlock the Traveller tier benefits of the utu Membership for every VAT refund. We recommend that you upgrade your utu Membership tier to either Explorer, Voyager or Elite to enjoy additional benefits before or during your travels.

utu Membership

utu Membership is a new product that gives utu users access to the benefits of the basic utu Tax Free app with the option of bonus features by subscribing for a premium tier.

By subscribing to an Explorer, Voyager or Elite tier, members can access bonus features including instant rewards today and even higher amounts on the value of VAT/GST refunds when shopping tax-free in 50 countries.

Yes! If you don’t already have an active membership, you are eligible for utu Membership if you complete the registration process on your utu Tax Free app.

Membership Tiers

Traveller

Explorer

Voyager

Elite

Instant Reward

NIL

2,300

utu Miles

(worth USD230)

6,000

utu Miles

(worth USD600)

12,500

utu Miles

(worth USD1,250)

Recognition Reward

25%
More in utu Miles refund

26%
More in utu Miles refund

28%
More in utu Miles refund

30%
More in utu Miles refund

Annual Fee

Complimentary

USD199

USD499

USD999

The participating partners are listed below:

  • Emirates Skywards
  • Ethiopian ShebaMiles
  • Eva Air Infinity MileageLands
  • KrisFlyer
  • Qatar Airways Privilege Club
  • Thai Royal Orchid Plus

Yes, you can subscribe for any utu Membership tier without first activating the utu Tax Free Card.

However, we recommend that you activate your utu Tax Free Card along with subscribing for a premium utu Membership tier at the time of registration to take advantage of the benefits and have it ready for use when travelling.

Simply follow these steps to subscribe for a premium utu Membership tier:

  1. Register on the utu Tax Free app
  2. From the ‘Home’ screen, click on ‘Subscribe to a premium membership’
  3. Select and subscribe to your preferred utu Membership tier
  4. Complete the subscription process

Once you have subscribed for a utu Membership, you won't be able to cancel it. It will expire a year from activation, and you can then renew it.

You can only upgrade to another tier if you are currently on the Traveller tier. You are also unable to downgrade your tier until the current membership tier expires (one year from the date of activation).

We need you to select a Rewards program so that we can provide your joining bonus Rewards after subscribing to a premium utu Membership tier as you can do so from within the Account section of the app.

Your utu Membership benefits do not apply to any VAT refund received to your utu Tax Free Card number after the expiration date.

We will provide instructions on renewing your membership closer to the time of expiry.

Your utu Membership benefits are non-transferable.

Your utu Membership is valid for one calendar year from date of activation.

You will receive your joining bonus Rewards immediately after subscribing for a utu Membership.

Your new tax-free shopping benefits will be automatically applied to each VAT refund received to your utu Tax Free Card number. You can find your utu Membership benefits from the ‘Account’ tab and click on ‘Membership.’ 

Your utu ID is your utu Membership number. Go to 'Profile' on your utu Tax Free app home screen and click 'View Profile.'

utu Refund Methods

You can choose to receive your tax refunds in: Frequent Flyer Miles Enjoy a 25% upsize in your tax refund value with utu’s airline partners Payment Card

You may add as many of our Frequent Flyer Program partners as you like.

To receive your tax refund in Frequent Flyer Miles, you will need to add and select your chosen Frequent Flyer Program as the refund method.

You will be required to provide your membership account number and other necessary details. Once added, select your preferred Frequent Flyer Program as your default refund method to receive your tax refund in Frequent Flyer Miles.

If you have already selected Payment Card as your default refund method, you may make the change by selecting any of the Frequent Flyer Programs that you have added. To set a Frequent Flyer Program as your default refund method:

  1. Under the utu Card page, tap on Refund method
  2. Select your preferred Frequent Flyer Program to set it as your default refund method

You will see an indication on the app of your newly selected default refund method.

You will receive your refund within 10 working days from utu receiving your refund from the respective Tax Refund Operator, depending on the refund method you choose.

If you have chosen to receive your tax refund in Frequent Flyer Miles, the time taken to receive your refund will vary based on the respective Frequent Flyer Programs. Do ensure that you have entered the correct membership account information as incorrect information will cause a delay in processing.

utu will notify you once you have received your tax refund in your preferred refund method.

Contact your Frequent Flyer Program membership services if you still have not received your Frequent Flyer Miles after 10 working days.

There could have been an error in the input of the Frequent Flyer membership account number or other necessary details. We will not be able to process the refund if the details provided are incorrect. You will receive an in-app notification to re-enter or update your details.

The type of refund you receive is determined by the refund method selected when your tax refund is processed by a refund operator to your utu Tax Free Card. To ensure you receive your refund in your preferred method, ensure you have selected it before completing your customs validation upon departure.

Check that you have entered your Rewards account number correctly. We are unable to link your Rewards account to your Refund Method on your behalf. If you are having trouble linking any of your Rewards account to your Refund Method, please contact us through utu Support.

My Account

Go to Login, tap on Forgot your password and tap on Reset after entering your email. Follow the instructions sent to your email.

Yes. Go to the Profile page, tap on View Profile to edit the mobile number or email address. Once you have successfully changed the mobile number, you will receive an OTP to verify the new number.

You may enable notifications via your device’s settings. Notifications may include alerts, sounds and icon badges. These can be configured in settings. utu encourages shoppers to enable notifications for you to receive timely information on your tax refunds.

Please refer to the utu Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

To receive the verification code, make sure you have entered the correct mobile number. If the problem persists, please contact us via utu Support.

Yes, you can as your passport is still valid. Your passport is required as part of the identity verification process.

We're sorry to see you go. You may send your request to cancel your account via utu Support.

EVA Air Infinity Mileagelands Bonus Award Miles Promotion

To be eligible for the promotion, you must first be an Infinity MileageLands member.

You must also accumulate tax-free shopping receipts up to USD1,500 and make your utu Tax Free Card as the refund destination to receive the Bonus Award Miles.

Yes, you must be an Infinity MileageLands member to qualify for the promotion. If you are interested in the promotion but not a member, you can sign up to be one here.

Here’s how to receive the extra 250 Bonus Award Miles.

1. Sign up and activate your utu Tax Free Card

2. Select Frequent Flyer Program and add your Infinity MileageLands membership account as your preferred refund method

3. Accumulate tax-free shopping receipts up to USD1,500 with utu Tax Free Card as your refund destination

4. The 250 Bonus Award Miles earned for accumulated tax-free shopping receipts up to USD1,500 will be credited to your Infinity MileageLands account within 10 working days

The 250 Bonus Award Miles Promotion is valid from 04 Mar 2022 to 30 Sep 2022.

The 250 Bonus Award Miles earned for accumulated tax-free shopping receipts up to USD1,500 will be credited to your Infinity MileageLands account within 10 working days.

You will receive a 25% upsize on all tax refunds. To illustrate, for every 100 USD Tax refund, you can earn 125 USD worth of Award Miles which converts to 3,125 Award Miles.

Refer & Earn Campaign

The Refer & Earn campaign is a rewarding way to share and introduce utu Tax Free to your friends and family.

 

It rewards you with 500 bonus miles in your preferred Frequent Flyer program and your friend with 1000 bonus miles in their preferred Frequent Flyer Program. As long as your friend subscribes to a premium Membership tier (Explorer, Voyager and Elite), you both will receive your bonus miles!

You will be eligible for the Refer & Earn Campaign if your premium Membership tier is Explorer, Voyager, or Elite.

 

A referral is successful when your friend has subscribed to any of the premium Membership tiers (Explorer, Voyager or Elite).

Here’s how you can invite a friend for the Refer & Earn Campaign:

  • From the ‘Home’ screen, click on ‘Refer & Earn’
  • Click 'Share with friends' to send your referral code to your friends

Anyone who has not subscribed to any premium utu Membership tiers (Explorer, Voyager, or Elite).

You will receive 500 bonus miles from the Frequent Flyer Program you have selected for each successful referral.

Your friend must have successfully subscribed to one of the premium Membership tiers (Explorer, Voyager, or Elite) in order to receive your campaign reward.

If your friend has successfully subscribed to any of the premium Membership tiers but you have not received your reward, you can do the following:

  1. Ensure your default Rewards program information is correct
  2. Your friend must have used your referral code when subscribing for a premium Membership. If your friend did not complete this step, we are unable to credit you with your referral bonus miles.
  3. Contact utu Support for troubleshooting.

When you and your friend successfully subscribe to any of the tiers of utu Membership, you will receive a push notification on your utu Tax Free app to inform you of a successful referral.

Others

Go to the Profile pagetap on Help and then Contact Us.

Otherwise, you may contact us at:

utu Support

Toll Free: +44 (800) 041 8174

Business hours: Mon–Fri 11:00-19:00 (CET or UTC/GMT+1)

After 19:00 (CET or UTC/GMT+1): Email us or leave a voicemail

Email: ututaxfree@utu.global

The FAQs are some of the questions that we frequently get asked in relation to our products and services. The questions and answers are not intended to be exhaustive and do not constitute legal advice for your particular question, issue or concern and are meant to serve merely as guidance and consequently have no legal merit. The information, however, is intended to be helpful and to assist you with queries which you may have regarding the products and services. For more information, we advise that you review the terms and conditions for the products and services and if necessary to contact us to dialog further on your queries.