Can anyone easily explain Italian VAT? While recently in Florence, I bought several purses at one shop. When I asked for a VAT receipt, they said, 'the owners don't participate in VAT." I was in no position to argue, so I had to take it at face value. Also, what about hotels? Do they participate? Thanks for any help!
The article posted by Tom has a pretty decent summary. I did notice that the author stated a few times that he had never actually done the claim. It wasn't mentioned in the article that the products being claimed for must be unused. He states that the VAT on some services can be claimed be claimed back. I don't believe that services can be claimed on - the service will have been used. I think that it is possible that the vendor doesn't participate in VAT but more likely a language issue and they probably meant that they don't participate in the VAT rebate program.
You'll find the Italian VAT well explained here: http://tinyurl.com/24l9nkk There's no VAT refund on food or accomodations.