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to refuse to present boarding pass at airport shops

(94 Posts)
ProjectPerfect Tue 11-Aug-15 11:40:02

I had always assumed that as passengers we were legally obliged to hand over our boarding passes when shopping in UK airports.

However we're not and the stores are using it as a way of claiming VAT back from HMCR without passing those savings on to consumers.

Don't know why I'm shocked but I am

LadyPlumpington Tue 11-Aug-15 11:42:03

How strange.

How do you know they're not passing the savings on though?

LineRunner Tue 11-Aug-15 11:42:18

I was just reading about this. What a massive scam it has been.

I wonder what the people working on the tills have been told to do if someone refuses to show their boarding pass.

Etak15 Tue 11-Aug-15 11:44:11

Oh how interesting, it's a pain in the arse having to get your boarding pass in and out and putting it back in the right page in your passport ready for boarding with 4 dc's and annoying when travelling dh!!

museumum Tue 11-Aug-15 11:45:36

Not compulsory????

I have more than once left my boarding pass with dh and the kids when I've queued for water or toiletries in boots and been refused service and had to run all the way back and re queue!!

I'm raging that it turns out it's not compulsory.

aprilanne Tue 11-Aug-15 11:46:07

no its to see where you are flying to because some discounts you dont get flying from uk to europe .i went to get my boy cigarettes before flying to amsterdam and could,nt only to non europe leaving uk .

SilverShadows Tue 11-Aug-15 11:47:50

What is the discount you get at duty free then - I assumed that was VAT?

partialderivative Tue 11-Aug-15 11:48:15

They would be foolish not to claim it back

Theycallmemellowjello Tue 11-Aug-15 11:48:35

Yes as aprilanne says it's also to check eligibility for duty free stuff.

scaevola Tue 11-Aug-15 11:52:59

Duty free means free of excise duty. And I can see why you need to prove destination as eligibility for that.

And there's no reason why the tech which adjusts that price cannot adjust the VAT too.

GeorgeYeatsAutomaticWriter Tue 11-Aug-15 11:55:59

But surely checking for duty-free eligibility doesn't apply if you're buying a bottle of water in Boots? Or does it?

FrChewieLouie Tue 11-Aug-15 11:57:03

YANBU at all, this really pissed me off when I read about it. I'm not buying anything at an airport shop again, unless it's legit duty free.

LurkingHusband Tue 11-Aug-15 11:58:27

specialsubject Tue 11-Aug-15 11:59:14

airport shops are always horrifically expensive. No duty free in the EU, and usually the prices are hiked so it is no cheaper if it is duty free.

take an empty water bottle through security, fill at a tap afterwards.

Madbengalmum Tue 11-Aug-15 12:00:21

Interesting to see what they do in whsmith as in order to use their till system you have to scan your boarding pass. It is a real con, and surely them making you scan it is illegal?

PerspicaciaTick Tue 11-Aug-15 12:01:30

This BBC radio item talks about this issue and the result is that you don't need to show your boarding pass.

Very interesting and nothing at all to do with duty free.

IKnowIAmButWhatAreYou Tue 11-Aug-15 12:02:22

Whilst not "compulsory", it may be an in-store policy in which case they'll just refuse to serve you (and be within their rights to do so).

ProjectPerfect Tue 11-Aug-15 12:03:56

The point is though on purchased other than cigs and alcohol you're not purchasing "duty free".

Any discount attached to a purchase (and the article makes it clear that there is often none) is a commercial discount not VAT. The VAT is then claimed back from HMRC and ends up in hands of the business not the pockets of the consumer.

daisydukes229 Tue 11-Aug-15 12:05:00

I don't personally have an issue with it. It doesn't take long to show it. I don't care enough to kick up a fuss and refuse grin

ProjectPerfect Tue 11-Aug-15 12:07:32

iknow of course they will be within their rights to stop serving people but hopefully they'll be forced to change their opaque and frankly dishonest policies.

I'm outraged that if I spend £20 in WH smith at LHR before I leave to a non eu destination that whsmith fet a tax rebate of £4 WTAF?!

ProjectPerfect Tue 11-Aug-15 12:08:53

Daisy it's not about the physical task of showing the boarding pass its that a multi national corporation get a tax rebate because I shop at the airport.

museumum Tue 11-Aug-15 12:09:37

90% oft flights are in the UK. I don't expect a discount. I just want water or a paper. When I'm alone it's easy as I have all my bags and belongings on me at all times but if I'm with dh and kids I'm not carrying all our stuff into the boots or smiths queue. It's infuriating if you forget it and are refused service.

PerspicaciaTick Tue 11-Aug-15 12:09:44

It can take ages to show it. Especially if you realise that your boarding card is in the bag with your DP who is sitting the other side of the boarding area and the check-out person makes you go and get it like a naughty schoolgirl.

LurkingHusband Tue 11-Aug-15 12:10:41

Whilst not "compulsory", it may be an in-store policy in which case they'll just refuse to serve you (and be within their rights to do so)

It's also not compulsory to buy from them, for balance.

MoltenBrownChocolate Tue 11-Aug-15 12:13:27

I'm going to refuse to show my boarding pass from now on. I was pretty miffed when I read the article too, OP! I guess proper duty free is different though.

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