There is no doubt about it...I love my luxury goods. But, my super secret hack for buying these items is to buy them in Europe and save money through the VAT tax rebate for American citizens.
For example, in the good ol' USofA, a Louis Vuitton Neverful PM bag is a whopping $1,180 plus tax ($1,250). But, in Paris (or any other EU city) the cost is €895 but with NO tax because VAT taxes are already factored into the price. The €895 minus VAT is €787 or $882.82 if you convert at todays value of US Dollar vs. the Euro.
That's a savings of $368!!!
Some things to keep in mind:
1) You must have your passport with you when you purchase to prove you are not a citizen of the EU.
2) If you purchase, the store may or may not give you the VAT refund right away.
3) You must present UNUSED goods at Global Blue along with your receipt and Global Blue paperwork provided by the store.
If the store does not give you a refund right away, you need to visit a VAT refund location (Global Blue) at the last airport before you leave the EU for home. So, if you are flying out of an EU country into another EU country for a connection back to the US, you find the Global Blue location in the connection airport. They will inspect your item and, once approved, will stamp your refund forms. You'll mail the stamped form in the envelope provided with your paperwork. You will receive a refund to your credit card within 3-4 weeks. Sometimes, Global Blue will instantly refund to your credit card, they will require you to have that card with you in order to refund right away.
If the store does give you the refund right away, you still need to get the customs stamp and mail in the paperwork in the envelope provided.
Of course, Florence has TONS of luxury items along with some pretty spectacular leather goods and you'll benefit from the VAT tax refunds.
Join us for our Florence CE on October 20-22 and enjoy Florence with friends and family! Registration is $795 and it's filling fast! We have limited space, so register soon - we are accepting registrations on a first-come first-served basis.