- The position of the tax authorities with regard to the classification of the purchase of a plane ticket from a foreign airline as an import of services is not entirely consistent with the literal terms of the provisions
- It follows from the provisions of the VAT Act that the purchase of a flight from a taxable person who does not have a registered office or a fixed place of supply in Poland leads to a situation where the purchaser is obliged to pay the tax due.
- However, there are several documents explaining the position of tax organizations on this issue
The analysis should start with the answer to the question whether the ticket is an accounting document† According to par. 3 point 4 of the Regulation of the Minister of Finance of December 3, 2013 on invoicing, a ticket (also electronic) is considered an invoice. This means that you can include it in the tax-deductible expenses and deduct VAT from it. However, the document discussed must meet a number of criteria:
- must be issued by a carrier authorized to provide services consisting in the carriage of passengers,
- have to cover a route longer than 50 km,
- its form must guarantee the authenticity, integrity of the content and legibility.
In addition, the ticket must necessarily contain data such as:
- number and date of issue of the document,
- carrier name and tax identification number,
- information about the type of service,
- the amount of tax on goods and services,
- the total amount due.
If all these conditions are met, it is possible to include the ticket in the KPiR and tax deduction. But what if you pay for a flight with a foreign company that does not have a seat in Poland? Entrepreneurs wonder whether there is a connection between purchase airline ticket and the import of services† What about the deduction of expenses in such a situation?
Also see: Flight tickets in the EU are up to 17 percent more expensive.
The purchase of a plane ticket and the importation of services – what does the regulation say?
Please refer to the provisions of the tax law to resolve this issue. In general, the obligation to settle claims lies with the supplier of goods or services. However, there are some exceptions to this rule, when this obligation is transferred to the buyer. They are mentioned in art. 17 seconds. 1 items 4-7 of the VAT Act. One of these concerns people who purchase services from a foreign company that has neither its registered office nor a permanent place of business in the country. In this situation, the so-called service import†
The tax rate itself depends on the flight route. In case of purchase a plane ticket on a domestic route the VAT is 8%, and in the case of an international flight † 0 percent How do the regulations define international transport? According to art. 83 seconds. 3 point 2 lit. and † c of the VAT Act, it occurs in three cases:
- the place of departure is within the territory of the country and the place of arrival outside it,
- the place of departure is outside the territory of the country and the place of arrival is in its territory,
- the place of departure and arrival are outside the territory of the country, as long as the route partially passes through the territory of the country.
In the case of zero tax, of course, it cannot be deducted and refunded.
Also see: We have to pay for the climate. Flying is getting more expensive
Purchasing a plane ticket and importing services – what is the position of the tax authorities?
Interesting is the position of the tax authorities with regard to the classification purchase a plane ticket of a foreign carrier as an import of services does not quite correspond to the literal wording of the regulations. It follows from the provisions of the VAT Act that the purchase of a flight from a taxable person who does not have a registered office or a fixed place of supply in Poland leads to a situation where the purchaser is obliged to pay the tax due. However, there are several documents that explain the position of tax organizations on this. I’m talking about individual interpretations:
- Director of the Tax Chamber in Łódź of November 29, 2012 (reference number IPTPP2 / 443-816 / 12-4 / IR),
- Director of the Fiscal Chamber in Katowice of October 30, 2013 (reference number IBPP4 / 443-353 / 13 / PK),
- Director of the Tax Chamber in Pozna dated December 8, 2014 (reference number ILPP4 / 443-498 / 14-2 / ISN).
These documents contain an analysis of the regulations in force in relation to the situation presented by the entrepreneur and indicate that in the case of purchasing an airline ticket from a supplier outside the country, there is no service import† For example, the director of IS in Pozna writes:
Referring to the above provisions of the Tax Code to the state of affairs presented, it should be mentioned that by purchasing air tickets, the company becomes a purchaser of services provided by foreign airlines.
Therefore, it is not mandatory to tax these services, because the legislator in no way binds this obligation to the purchaser of the service – there is no importation of services within the meaning of Art. 2 point 9 of the law, and consequently there is no obligation to pay the tax on this account. In the case of the provision of the above services, the service provider (carrier) is a VAT payer.
The purchase of this type of services from foreign carriers therefore does not constitute an import of services for the Company and does not create an obligation to offset VAT.
Also see: Travel cheaply through Europe in times of high prices. Record discounts on Interrail
Purchasing a plane ticket and importing services – summary
Interpreting tax rules often causes problems for entrepreneurs. A good understanding of this is important because you can prevent unpleasant consequences. When considering whether the purchase of a plane ticket is an import of services it is worth referring not only to the VAT Act, but also to the written statements of the tax authorities analyzing such matters. According to several of the documents issued, the obligation to pay the tax does not lie with the customer, who purchases the carrier’s services, even if the other of these entities is not established in Poland. In addition, it is possible for domestic flights to include the costs in the KPiR and tax deductions.