GST/HST and QST rebate for sponsors of foreign conventions, organizers of foreign conventions, and non-resident exhibitors

 

Notices to reader

The information on this page replaces the information in Guide RC4160, Rebate for Tour Packages, Foreign Conventions, and Non-Resident Exhibitor Purchases, and as a result, this guide has been eliminated.

A GST/HST rebate is no longer available to non-residents for the Canadian accommodation portion of eligible tour packages under the Foreign Convention and Tour Incentive Program (FCTIP) if the tour packages or accommodations are supplied after March 22, 2017. However, the rebate may still be available in respect of a supply of a tour package or accommodations made after March 22, 2017, and before 2018 if the amount owing for the supply is paid in full before January 1, 2018.

The rebate will still be available in respect of a supply of a tour package or accommodation made on or before March 22, 2017, regardless of when the consideration for the supply is paid or the tour takes place.

In addition, a rebate under the FCTIP is still available for certain expenses related to foreign conventions. 

As of July 1, 2021, digital economy businesses, including digital platform operators, may have potential goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) obligations under three new measures that were announced in the Fall Economic Statement 2020 by the Government of Canada and revised as announced on April 19, 2021 following consultations with stakeholders. This means you may have new obligations, including registering, charging, collecting and reporting the GST/HST.

For more information on these new measures and the definitions for the digital economy go to GST/HST for digital economy businesses: Overview.

On this page

Rebate eligibility
Eligible expenses
Calculating and claiming the rebate
Filing your rebate application
Documents to include with the rebate application and to keep for your records
What to do if someone is filing your rebate application for you
Paying or crediting a GST/HST rebate for foreign conventions


Rebate eligibility

You may be eligible for a rebate of the goods and services tax / harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) and Quebec Sales Tax (QST) paid on a convention facility and related convention supply, if you are any of the following:

You cannot claim this rebate if the related tax was paid or credited to you by a Canadian supplier.

Eligible expenses

A non-resident sponsor or an organizer of a foreign convention that is not registered for the GST/HST may claim a rebate for the GST/HST and the QST paid on:

A non-resident exhibitor who is not registered for the GST/HST may claim the Foreign Convention and Tour Incentive Program (FCTIP) rebate for the GST/HST and/or the QST paid on:

Note

Non-resident exhibitors who are not GST/HST registrants do not pay the tax on exhibition space rented from the sponsor of a convention (whether foreign or domestic), or on related convention supplies (other than food, beverages, or items bought under a contract for catering) bought from the sponsor.

Non-eligible expenses

The following property and services are not eligible for a rebate:

Calculating and claiming the rebate

Under the FCTIP, the following rebate amounts are available:

Calculate your rebate for the GST/HST and for the QST separately.

Example – Calculation of the rebate for the sponsor of a foreign convention

The following chart shows the rebate for the sponsor of a foreign convention held in Alberta. All taxable purchases were subject to the GST.

Item Charge GST Rebate
Meals and catering $8,000 $400  $200
Meeting rooms $2,000  $100 $100
Convention materials $10,000 $500 $500
Exhibit decorations $2,500 $125 $125
Total $22,500 $1,125 $925

The sponsor can apply for a GST rebate of CAN$925 (only 50% of the tax paid on meals and catering is eligible for a rebate).

Example – Calculation of the rebate for a non-resident exhibitor who is not registered for the GST/HST

A non-resident exhibitor who is not registered for the GST/HST attended a three-day convention in British Columbia. The exhibitor stayed at a hotel for two nights before and one night after the convention to assemble and disassemble his booth and displays. The exhibitor also stayed at the same hotel for another four nights after the convention.

Expenses Vendor Cost GST
Exhibition space Sponsor $500 $0
Displays Registrant supplier $200 $10
Banners Registrant supplier $300 $15
Equipment rental Convention centre $400 $20
Lodging (10 nights) Hotel $1,000 $50
Food and beverages Hotel $200 $10
Total   $2,600 $105

The exhibitor has to determine which items qualify for a rebate:

  • Exhibition space – The GST was not payable on the exhibition space because the space was provided by the sponsor. No rebate is available because no tax was paid.
  • Displays, banners and equipment rental – The exhibitor can claim a rebate of the GST paid on the displays, banners and equipment rental because they are related convention supplies bought in Canada from a person other than the sponsor exclusively for consumption or use in connection with the convention.
  • Lodging – The exhibitor can claim a rebate of the GST paid on six nights of short-term accommodation used exclusively in connection with the convention because this accommodation is a related convention supply bought in Canada from a person other than the sponsor. The exhibitor cannot claim a rebate for the tax paid on the remaining four nights' accommodation because that accommodation was not a related convention supply.
  • Food and beverages – The exhibitor is not entitled to claim a rebate of the GST paid on food and beverages because they are not related convention supplies when supplied to an exhibitor.

The exhibitor can claim a rebate as follows:

Expenses   GST paid Rebate
Displays $10 $10
Banners $15 $15
Equipment rental $20 $20
Lodging $50 $30
Total $95 $75

To claim your rebate, use Form GST386, Rebate Application for Conventions.

Filing your rebate application

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) must receive your rebate application no later than one year after the last day of a convention. Make sure to attach all supporting documents.

Send your form, with supporting documents attached, to:

Canada Revenue Agency
Prince Edward Island tax centre
275 Pope Road
Summerside PE  C1N 6A2
CANADA 

Documents to include with the rebate application and to keep for your records

Attach copies (do not send original receipts) of all of the following supporting documents to your rebate application:

The supporting documents must be in either English or French, or you must provide a translation. If you do not provide all of the supporting documents with your rebate application, it will be denied.

The documents must prove that you paid the GST/HST and/or the QST on the supplies. An invoice that shows only tax payable (but not paid) is not acceptable. Receipts and supporting documentation sent with your application will not be returned to you.

If you are a sponsor, you must also keep all documents in your records that support how you determined the number of expected Canadian and non-resident delegates, and the total number of expected delegates. You may have to make these documents available to the CRA, if it asks to see them.

If you want to keep your records for your rebate claim(s) outside Canada, you must ask for permission. For more information, see GST/HST Memorandum 15.1, General Requirements for Books and Records.

What to do if someone is filing your rebate application for you

If you enter into an agreement with someone else to have them fill out and file your rebate application for you, see What to do if someone is filing your rebate application for you.

Paying or crediting a GST/HST rebate for foreign conventions

If you are a GST/HST registrant and have supplied a convention facility, related convention supplies, or short-term or camping accommodation to a sponsor or non-registered organizer of a foreign convention, you can choose to pay or credit the rebate amount payable under the FCTIP to the sponsor or non-registered organizer of the foreign convention.

For more information, see GST/HST registrants that pay or credit a rebate amount under the Foreign Convention and Tour Incentive Program.

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