Tax and Canadian tax refunds

Provincial Sales Tax (PST), known as TVQ in Quebec, is charged on just about anything purchased in Canada and is different in each province. Nunavut, Yukon and the Northwest Territories do not have a Provincial Sales Tax. Alberta only charges PST on accommodation.

Goods and Services Tax (GST), known as TPS in Quebec, adds 6% to all purchases on top of the Provincial Sales Tax.

Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador have incorporated the GST and PST into a single tax system called Harmonised Sales Tax (HST) of 14%.

Some small accommodation providers do not charge tax and there is no tax on groceries. Some provinces and cities have additional accommodation taxes and different rates of PST for the province. Check the full price including tax when booking a place to stay. Prices are normally displayed without the tax.

Partial tax refunds are available on goods over $50 before tax and most accommodation. Original receipts must be provided and mailed to tax refund agencies once you leave Canada. Pick up a few different tax refund leaflets. Each has different guidelines and charges. Read them before you leave because you may require a customs stamp on exit.

Province GST/HST Rate PST Rate Combined Rate
Alberta 6% N/A 6%
British Columbia 6% 7% 13%
Manitoba 6% 7% 13%
New Brunswick 14% N/A 14%
Newfoundland & Labrador 14% N/A 14%
Northwest Territories 6% N/A 6%
Nova Scotia 14% N/A 14%
Nunavut 6% N/A 6%
Ontario 6% 8% 14%
Prince Edward Island 6% 10% 16% *
Quebec 6% 7.5% 13.5% *
Saskatchewan 6% 7% 13%
Yukon Territory 6% N/A 6%

* PST is added after the GST has been added. For example, if an item is sold for $100 $6.00 is added for GST then the subtotal is calculated at $106. PST is then applied to this amount. 10% (For PEI) is $10.60 so the total payable would be $116.60. This means the combined rate is actually higher than stated.

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