Tax Free Shopping (Curaçao)

Tax free shopping for cruise tourists has been extended. This announcement was published in the National Gazette of Curacao dated January 11th, 2024 with general effect of October 3rd, 2023.

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The purpose of the government is to introduce a more comprehensive tax free arrangement for cruise tourists. On top of that such introduction may aid in promoting economic growth, boost tourism and enhancing the overall experience for cruise tourists.


In late 2017, it was announced that the Ministers of Economic Development and Finance had formed a task force to define the suitable concept, policy, regulations, and an efficient implementation strategy for the implementation of tax and duty-free shopping in Curaçao.

This regulation was issued on October 3, 2018, and published in the Official Gazette of Curaçao. Based on this (temporary) regulation, qualifying duty-free products can be sold to cruise tourists by designated entrepreneurs. This (temporary) regulation had a period of three years. This period was subsequently extended with two more years on October 5, 2021. The last-mentioned regulation has automatically lapsed on October 3, 2023.

Presently, the government plans to implement a more extensive tax free arrangement for tourists by making adjustments in the Landsverordening omzetbelasting 1999 (LvOB) and the Landsverordening tarief van invoerrechten (Lvti). The current regulation aims to increase the spending levels of cruise tourists in Curaçao and to stimulate economic activity.


A tax-free product is defined in the LvOB regulation as the supply of exempted goods to cruise tourists, intended to be immediately exported by those cruise tourists.

Duty-free products are delivered to the cruise tourist in a sealed and closed package, attached to which is a copy of the invoice or receipt for the goods contained in the package.

The current regulation is initially limited to sales to cruise tourists who visit Curaçao for one day and then depart. A cruise tourist must, when purchasing duty-free products from a retailer, identify themselves with a valid identification document and a cruise pass provided by the cruise ship.

The sale of duty-free products can only be carried out by designated entrepreneurs. If the entrepreneur has received fines in the past two years for recidivism, fraud, or repeated offenses, they will not be eligible for the designation.


A different set of rules applies to the sale of alcohol and tobacco. Besides the standard sales tax, both import duties and excise taxes are levied on these goods. Entrepreneurs can offer these products for sale in their businesses. However, for tax-free delivery, the goods must be handled through a customs warehouse.

In order to apply to this tax incentive an assessment of your product line is recommended prior to your decision.


Our team of seasoned tax practitioners can assist you with assessing if the rules in connection with tax free shopping can be applied by your business in Curaçao. Should you have any questions regarding this announcement, please do not hesitate to contact us. Our team would be more than happy to assist you with your questions.

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Vivian Pieters

Vivian Pieters