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No show VAT

17 February 2015
Issue: 4489 / Categories: Forum & Feedback , VAT

Can input VAT charged on an unused hotel room be reclaimed by a business?

I recently booked a hotel for a business trip to discuss an HMRC enquiry with a client. Foolishly I took the discounted non-refundable rate. When the department changed its mind and belatedly decided to stop hassling my client about their tax affairs the hotel booking proved unnecessary.

Because the hotel refused to refund my money even if I cancelled I decided to retain the booking. This was on the basis that there was a one in a thousand chance that in any event I would need to visit the location to attend a meeting and I would have kicked myself had I then needed to pay for a second hotel room.

As it transpired the reservation was not needed. The next day I received what looked like a VAT invoice except that the amount paid was shown as a zero-rated “no show” rate.


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