VAT Receipts from Hotels.Com

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This topic contains 9 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  LuganoPirate 5 Jun 2019
at 13:36
.

Viewing 11 posts - 1 through 11 (of 11 total)

  • Bath_VIP
    Participant

    Does anyone know how you can get a VAT receipt from Hotels.com?

    Most of the time when I book with Hotels.com, I end up paying at the hotel and the receipt is the hotel’s own receipt. Occasionally, the hotel will say, you paid already via Hotels.com so you need to get a receipt from them.

    Whilst you can get a receipt from Hotels.com which has a separate line for taxes, that explicitly states that the receipt is not a VAT receipt so how does one get a VAT receipt from Hotels.com?


    TimFitzgeraldTC
    Participant

    If you prepay hotels.com rates direct with them and they are the merchant then it is possible that no VAT is due as they are an agent and falls under the TOMS program.


    Bath_VIP
    Participant

    That is what is claimed but I don’t see a reduction in the rate accordingly e.g. if the rate is £100+VAT then the Hotels.com receipt shows £120 not £100. Have they got a scam going here?


    superchris
    Participant

    This reply has been reported for inappropriate content.

    I think Tim is more the expert here ut no i dont think its a scam, its all part of the Tour Operators Margin Scheme. Essentially when you book a prepaid rate the rate is non-vatable, the invoice comes from hotels.com and there is no VAT so you pay the full amount and can reclaim zero. If you book a flexible rate then you pay the hotel directly and they charge VAT so you can reclaim.

    Slightly related Ive come to realise that Airbnb are not overly competitive when compared to premier inns etc for the same reason, ie the is no VAT so you cant reclaim anything.

    2 users thanked author for this post.

    TimFitzgeraldTC
    Participant

    Sorry to expand a bit without going crazy. It isn’t a scam. But when you prepay rates with a 3rd party agent such as hotels.com then the rate falls under TOMS and as such there is no VAT element. If say it was a Hilton and you booked a prepaid rate direct with them in advance then it is VATable. But through hotels.com it may be that the rate is not. However any receipt produced by hotels.com should say that the invoice fall under the Tour Operator Margin Scheme. Our invoices we issue where this applies will show this for example.

    Hope that helps. Even I find the whole thing a bit weird and HMRC and bedbanks (3rd party wholesalers) have been having various legal battles over the years about the VAT position.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    Bath_VIP
    Participant

    I should have used the words “nice little earner” rather than scam. My point is that if TOMS allows this, then I don’t understand the following situation.

    If I book through Hotels.com and pay at the hotel for a room costing £100+VAT, I am assuming that Hotels.com get a cut. Perhaps it works out as £90 to the hotel, £10 to Hotels.com and £20 to HMRC.

    If I book and pay through Hotels.com and the hotel says “get a receipt from Hotels.com”, the price is still £120 as far am I am concerned but what is now happening to HMRC’s £20 given TOMS? Does Hotels.com get to keep it all or do they share with the Hotel. Either way, why are they not reducing the price for me?


    TimFitzgeraldTC
    Participant

    Hi Bath VIP

    Your calculation on this is not correct I’m afraid on your 90/10/20 example

    If hotels.com paid £90 to Hilton and charged you £120 then hotels.com pay only VAT on the margin (£30 – thus £6) to HMRC.

    Good link for you:

    VAT – Tour Operators’ Margin Scheme (TOMS) A Brief Guide


    https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tour-operators-margin-scheme-for-vat-notice-7095

    Price is not reduced for you as VAT is not due in the “normal” way.

    Hope that helps.


    ontherunhome
    Participant

    Due to vat issues i rarely use Hotels.com, as it makes the booking that looks cheap, cost more in the end.

    Booking.com is better where you can recover VAT, especially non UK bookings. Hotels.com is good for example in France, where VAT is not possible to reclaim on hotels. Plus as you pay higher rates in France, the reward night value is higher.

    Hotels.com also like to take the payment at once, whilst booking.com is usually pay at hotel.

    I always check hotel website direct too, as often it is cheaper, or you get bonus points/free wi fi etc. Recently booked a Leonardo Hotel in Mannheim direct after seeing on Hotels.com. I joined their free loyalty scheme, got an extra 10% discount, a free upgrade and breakfast.

    I also have a gripe about VAT when I no show. Some hotels will provide an nil vat invoice, for the full amount. They advertise a rate with vat, then pocket the vat amount, as they dont provide a supply, so no vat due. That is wrong, either the customer should pay net amount, or HMRC should get the 20%,as they dont do anything, it costs nothing and they make 20% more for a room not being used.


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    I really can’t see where the problem is here? I’ve booked through Booking.com,, Hotels.com and Agoda, in many cases prepaying the room, not only in the UK but elsewhere in the world as well. On checkout I ask for a printed copy of the invoice and I always get one for the room and any extras I’ve had.


    Bath_VIP
    Participant

    LP,

    The problem is that not every hotel gives you a receipt if you book through Hotels.com. It’s a change that has become particularly apparent over the last year or 2 but if you pre-pay through Hotels.com and then ask for receipt at the hotel front desk, you are now told, “you paid through Hotels.com, you need to ask them for the receipt”.

    In the last year or so, I can think of at least 5 occasions where this happened including Holiday Inn Express (in both London and Edinburgh) and Marriott in Leeds.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    LP,

    The problem is that not every hotel gives you a receipt if you book through Hotels.com. It’s a change that has become particularly apparent over the last year or 2 but if you pre-pay through Hotels.com and then ask for receipt at the hotel front desk, you are now told, “you paid through Hotels.com, you need to ask them for the receipt”.

    In the last year or so, I can think of at least 5 occasions where this happened including Holiday Inn Express (in both London and Edinburgh) and Marriott in Leeds.

    I just looked at the last hotel I booked through Booking.com, where I prepayed the room. I knew I’d had extra’s and paid those in cash, but to my shame never actually looked at the invoice. Indeed, as you say, there was no room charge on it. As you say Bath, this must be fairly recent as looking back at a few older stays from a few years ago, when I did need receipts, the room charge is clearly shown. Luckily, or perhaps I should say unfortunately, no-one pays my expenses any more, so no receipts needed, and it all comes out of my own pocket!!

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