Duty-free, tax-free, GST relief – are these all just tax jargon? Why should you even care about the difference (yes! there’s a difference!)? Well, for one, understanding what these terms are and how they work could help you save money when you are shopping in Singapore. Confused? Worry no more! We break down the various terms for you here, so the next time you fly into or out of Changi Airport, you’ll know exactly how to get the most bang for your buck with your purchases!

Breaking it down for you: Duty-free, tax-free, GST relief and more

Duty-free, tax-free, GST relief and more Duty-free, tax-free, GST relief and more

*Full list of duties and dutiable goods in Singapore.

**Full list of GST refund kiosks in Changi.

***More information on GST relief.

Shopping at Changi: Where and how to save money

Shopping at Changi Shopping at Changi

A more convenient way to enjoy savings would be to become a Changi Rewards member, shop ahead of your travels on iShopChangi, or enjoy tax and duty absorbed wines at iShopChangiWines without even having to travel. More in the section below:

Changi Rewards Changi Rewards

Shopping in the city: Where and how to save money

Tourist Refund Scheme

For tourists visiting Singapore, there is a Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS) which sees major stores within the city offering GST refunds with a minimum spend of $100 (up to three same-day receipts from shops bearing the same GST registration number and shop name). Just look out for a “Tax Free” shopping logo or sign displayed at the shop to know whether a shop is participating in the TRS.

Tax-free shopping logo Tax-free shopping logo

Look out for these signs when shopping in the city to enjoy tax-free shopping for tourists. Source: VisitSingapore

Following which, before you leave Singapore – head to the Electronic Tourist Refund self-help kiosks located at Changi’s Departure Check-in Halls and Transit Lounges to process your refunds. Read more here for additional information and a step-by-step explanation on how to go about claiming your tax refunds.

Pro tip:If you are shopping in the departure transit areas of the airport, you enjoy the entire GST savings of 7%. This saves you from paying an administrative fee when you are claiming your tax refunds should you shop in the city.

GST Refund counters GST Refund counters

GST Refund counters are conveniently located across the terminals. Source: SuperTravelMe

With the countless rebates, discounts and savings you can get at Changi, shopping has never been more enticing. Now that you know the differences between these terms, you can maximise your savings in a hassle-free manner so you can shop till you drop!


Shop before you fly!

Shop 30 days in advance and up to 12 hours before your flight at the comfort of your own home. Plus, enjoy tax and duty-free prices and online-exclusive offers. Shop now at iShopChangi!

Be rewarded when you shop at Changi!

Leap into a world of exclusive privileges as a Changi Rewards member. Enjoy GST-absorption for your purchases at participating outlets in the public areas of the airport and more. Sign up for the FREE membership here.

WiFi routers, travel insurance, attraction tickets and more!

Specially curated to meet your travelling needs, Changi Recommends offers an extensive range of travel necessities such as WiFi routers, travel insurance and more to help you get ready for your holiday. Shop now at Changi Recommends!