lifestyle, travel This is Cozumel

Overseas visitors to Cozumel can now more easily claim back sales tax on some purchases they make on the island.

Mexican tax refund company, Tax Back, has opened an office at Cozumel airport, this week, and can process refunds for passengers on all international departures.


Only purchases made in selected retailers qualify for the scheme and there is a 35% commission charge on the value of the refund, but it is still a good way to get money back on some of your vacation purchases.

Tax Back has official authorization from the Mexican Tax Administration Service to provide the refunds and they also have offices in the airports in Mexico City, Los Cabos, Cancun and Puerto Vallarta.

Cozumel tax free
Affiliated shop sign.


To use the scheme, qualifying overseas visitors need to shop at Tax Back affiliated shops, identifiable by a sign on the door or window, or by asking staff.

When you pay, ask for an official invoice (factura) and keep all the receipts safe.

Make sure the invoice has itemized details for all your purchases and a breakdown of goods and taxes.

If they need a tax ID (RFC) for you, use the generic tourist code: XEXX010101000.

Then, before going to the airport, make photocopies of your passport, boarding pass (if you have it) and FMM (Mexican immigration form).

Some airlines take your FMM when you check in, so make a copy beforehand.

Take your receipts, invoices and photocopies to the Tax Back module at the airport, along with the bank or credit card details for the account you want the refund sent to.


Cozumel Tax Back
Tax Back module at airport.

As an example, if you bought something for $500 USD including 11% sales tax (IVA), you can claim back about $49 and, after Tax Back take their 35%, you could expect to receive a refund of around $32.

Tax Back says you can track the status of your refund on their website and you will receive the money, by transfer, 40 days after submitting the paperwork at the airport.

Stores in Cozumel that are affiliated with the scheme include: Ultrajewels, Sunglasses, Zingara, Veari, Watch My Watch, Pineda Covalin, Joyería Silvarado, Margaritaville, Dufry, Palace Resorts, Fama, Aquaworld, Squalo, Tres Amigos Cozumel and Versalles.

For more information visit the Tax Back website.