I am going to stay in NY for a week and I will buy few electronics. This will be a around $15.000. I would like to know if I need to pay sales tax; or I am exempt from paying the sales tax as I don't live in US. I will be paying taxes on these items when I return to my country.

To avoid sales tax; my plan is;
I will be asking B&H or Adorama to deliver my order in a city nearby that is not in NY/NJ, example Stamford-CT (it's less than 1 hour travel). I will stay for a day there in a hotel just to collect my package. Does this arrangement exempt me from paying sales taxes.
is that possible? Is this correct way of doing it.

PS: I must pay 50% tax when I return to my country. I don't want to pay double taxes if possible.

  • very short answer, you'll likely have to buy online
    – Fattie
    Mar 19 '18 at 11:10

You will not be a resident of New York. That said, you will still be responsible for sales tax if the delivering company (B&H or Adorama in your example) has a nexus in Connecticut.

If you instead did the same thing with New Hampshire, Delaware, or the other three states without sales tax, then you wouldn't even need to worry about that. You might have to worry about local tax (e.g. in Alaska).

Be careful though. Deliveries in the United States are not always that precise in their delivery dates. There is some risk that the package might arrive before or after your hotel stay. If you can stay the whole week in one of the five states without sales tax, that would be more reliable than trying to time a hotel stay. I would expect New York and Connecticut to have more expensive hotels than the states without sales tax. Alaska being a possible exception.

I would also be a bit concerned with the billing address for the credit card that you are using. Under certain circumstances, that might impact your tax treatment. Or block the transaction entirely if your country is blocked from those products for some reason. You should get informed of this at the time of ordering if it's an issue.

Note that if you pay in New York and then ask for delivery in another state, they will probably have you pay sales tax at the time of purchase. As a general rule, whenever you pay in person, businesses charge you the sales tax at that physical location. The way that this will work successfully is if you buy online.

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