The value-added tax, in Turkey called Katma Değer Vergisi, or KDV, is 18% on most goods and services. Hotels typically combine it with a service charge of 10% to 15%, and restaurants may add a similar charge for service.
Value-added tax is nearly always included in quoted prices. Certain shops are authorized to refund the tax (but you must ask).
When making a purchase, ask for a VAT refund form and find out whether the merchant gives refunds—not all stores do, nor are they required to. Have the form stamped by customs officials when you leave the country. After you're through passport control, take the form to a refund-service counter for an on-the-spot refund (which is usually the quickest and easiest option), or mail it to the address on the form (or the envelope with it) after you arrive home—the processing time can be long, especially if you request a credit card adjustment.
Global Blue is a worldwide service with 270,000 affiliated stores and more than 700 refund counters at major airports and border crossings. Its refund form, called a Tax Free Check, is the most common across the European continent. The service issues refunds in the form of cash, check, or credit card adjustment.
Global Blue. 866/706–6090; 212/232–1121; www.globalblue.com.