Mexico Connect
Forums  > Areas > Jalisco's Lake Chapala Region
First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All


LH Don

Sep 2, 2006, 7:34 PM

Post #1 of 30 (3775 views)

Shortcut

Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
The Tourist tax initiated effective July 1, 1999 caused us as 50/50 Houston, Ajijic residents
many problems with Continental Airlines. The Mexican Law clearly states FM3, FM2, FM9 and Mexican citizens are exempt from payment. Almost every trip IAH to GDL was a battle
over this tax. Several times cancelling code UK tax amount from our AMEX charge was the
only fix. You would think after seven years someone would wake up and close this gap in knowledge. Not true last July 2005 (after 6 years) was told by a CO reservation Supervisor "if you told me you are a Mexican citizen I could take the charge off". Again I had to protest charge with AMEX. Reservations for our recent return to Ajijic (May 30) showed the gap is still deep within Continental. Back to AMEX. My message is the same as last post several years ago. If you have one of the FM's, check your tax paid on ticket (especially CO) code UK Mexican Tourism Tax (as of Aug booking $19.41, it varies monthly) you should not be charged. Good luck, but don't give up, you are correct.



Georgia


Sep 4, 2006, 5:51 PM

Post #2 of 30 (3676 views)

Shortcut

Re: [LH Don] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Request that Continental personnel contact their DOT liaison. That is ... apparently... the only individual in the company who knows you should have this charge refunded if you book online. Obviously, you have to show them your FM3 or FM2 or Imigrado document before they will refund the charge.


talosian


Sep 10, 2006, 3:49 PM

Post #3 of 30 (3535 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Georgia] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply

In Reply To
Request that Continental personnel contact their DOT liaison. That is ... apparently... the only individual in the company who knows you should have this charge refunded if you book online. Obviously, you have to show them your FM3 or FM2 or Imigrado document before they will refund the charge.


Everyone is ignoring what is the real problem here and that is the airlines build the fee/tax (whateveryou want to call if) into the total fare. Even Mexican citizens pay it without knowing BUT, the fee from exempt persons is not paid to Mexican Immigration since the Mexicans turn in another form (not the FM-T thingie) when they arrive.

The real issue is that the airlines refuse to advise people that they may be exempt with proof of their exempt status. the airlines figure that it's "only about $20" and the passenger won't make an issue IF they even know the tax/fee/whatever is built into the total fare.

I started a thread about this a cojuple of weeks ago and Bubba implied that people who make an issue of it are the biggest cheapskates on the planet, so I had the thread locked.

I am pursuing my own remedies which I think will work much better than charging things back on your plastic or trying to deal with cheating airlines.
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.


johanson


Sep 10, 2006, 5:31 PM

Post #4 of 30 (3516 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
I haven't challenged this "UK" tax issue since last Thursday evening, this time with a new ticket agent working at the Alaska Air Lines check-in desk in Seattle. He had no idea what I was talking about, checked around and found out that I was correct and stated that the Airline would be sending me a check for the $5 fee. He also wrote on the receipt that I suggested that the fee was closer to 200 pesos or about $19

You know, it's not the money there, it's the principle, it's the arrogance of some of the agents working at other airlines whom I have had to deal with that makes me push the issue.


Ed and Fran

Sep 10, 2006, 5:52 PM

Post #5 of 30 (3511 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Everyone is ignoring what is the real problem here and that is the airlines build the fee/tax (whateveryou want to call if) into the total fare. Even Mexican citizens pay it without knowing...


I suppose that could be true for most airlines. But when we lived in Houston and were making a number of trips back and forth to Mexico, we flew Aviacsa a lot. Fran is a Mexican national and at that time I did not have an FM3. When I'd buy the tickets from Aviacsa, Fran's ticket was always less money, without me saying anything to them. In fact, it took me a bit to realize that the tickets were different prices and ask why.

By the way, we always had good service with Aviacsa, and we'd use them again.

Regards

Ed & Fran


talosian


Sep 10, 2006, 7:14 PM

Post #6 of 30 (3491 views)

Shortcut

Re: [johanson] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply

In Reply To
You know, it's not the money there, it's the principle, it's the arrogance of some of the agents working at other airlines whom I have had to deal with that makes me push the issue.



Well, that's not something Bubba would believe.

And for many who know about the tax/fee (and most don't), the amount is too small but if you figure the literally millions of exempt people who don't know the tax/fee is built into the ticket price and pay it when they don't have to, it comes to literally millions of stolen dollars.

But in defense of the ticket agents, at least the independent ones, most do not know about the exempt status. I know this to be true since I have raised this issue, sub-rosa, with several and they had no idea what I was talking about nor did they want to take the time to check. I was simply told to take it up with the airline. And when I asked the airline, I was told to check with Mexican Tourism or Immigration. It was a "pass-the-buck" routine.
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.

(This post was edited by talosian on Sep 10, 2006, 7:17 PM)


LH Don

Sep 16, 2006, 8:19 PM

Post #7 of 30 (3346 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Yes its the principal, then the money, especially when its two tickets. For any company to not assure that after seven years all elements of their organization understand the simple
rules associated with this tax on the part of their Customer Service Personel is unbelieveable. Since the advent of E-Tickets, there is no way to introduce the subject. Calls to CO reservations provides totally new interesting directions like; "we can do nothing at this desk you must have it changed at the airport when you check in". Result, we stood for almost an hour while the desk clerk talked at great length to several CO elements discussing whos job it was and how to change it. After seven years and countless
incounters I have decided to take the easy way, just disput the charges with AMEX and forget about it. Have never had any reply from CO protesting my refusal to pay the tax or
any replys at all.


talosian


Sep 17, 2006, 5:26 AM

Post #8 of 30 (3330 views)

Shortcut

Re: [LH Don] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
   LH Don;

The airlines have no reason to impliment a final screen note to show the exemptions and override the charge to exempt persons. This allows the airlines to keep tens of millions of dollars/pesos they should not have in the first place, including from many Mexican citizens.

For every exempt person who challenges the airlines, millions do not. Do the math and you will see that unless "forced" to change their policies, the airlines won't.


LH Don;

And for every person like you, there are probably 1,000,000 other exempt people, including Mexicans, who say nothing, allowing the airlines to keep tens of millions of dollars/pesos.

And it would be very easy to put a note on the final confirmation screen explaining about exemption and allowing an override, but the airlines have no motivation to do it.
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.

(This post was edited by tonyburton on Sep 17, 2006, 4:38 PM)


Bubba

Sep 17, 2006, 4:31 PM

Post #9 of 30 (3273 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
The airlines have no reason to impliment a final screen note to show the exemptions and override the charge to exempt persons. This allows the airlines to keep tens of millions of dollars/pesos they should not have in the first place, including from many Mexican citizens.

I seriously doubt the airtlines are keeping this money which it collects in a fiduciary capacity and must remit to the taxing authority. If the airlines are keeping these funds then they are committing an illegal act. Not only that, the airlines´ accountants must be allocating components of fare collections into appropriate designated slots for gross revenues and tax remission obligations among other things. My bet is the airlines are submitting collected tax revenues to the taxing authority in excess of those required by law. It is likely that the taxing authority has no incentive to nit pick these receipts.

I would recommend that the Mexican government re-designate this an entrance tax applicable to everybody who buys a ticket or leave it up to exempt passengers to claim a refund through an arduous paper procedure making the initiation of a refund request onerous in nature so only cheapskates who have zero understanding of the value of their time would bother to submit a claim. For now, I think all of you folks who lose sleep over such nonsense should keep your refunded amounts in a special personal fund for rehabilitation after the heart attacks you are inducing from the tension you are creating within yourselves over inconsequential matters such as this.



(This post was edited by Bubba on Sep 17, 2006, 7:20 PM)


talosian


Sep 17, 2006, 4:52 PM

Post #10 of 30 (3262 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Bubba] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Typical Bubba. First, he doesn't know the procedure but assumes he does and uses his assumptions as fact.

Second, he put down people who feel they shouldn't be ripped off for money they may well have better places for(he calls them the skinflints of the World here at Lakeside), and/or those who simply feel it is wrong for an airline to rip off customers for any reason.

Isn't it great to have someone who can sit ahigh and pontificate to those who he sees as lesser than him?
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.


sparks


Sep 17, 2006, 5:18 PM

Post #11 of 30 (3254 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Anyone consider that they do pay the taxes collected to the mexican government so it can be wasted there.

Everyone is a tourist to the airlines it seems .... so I really doubt they are pocketing the extra.

Just a case of big business and big governement not giving a shit ... especially when it's working in their favor (to be lazy or financial gain).

I think you're just beating your gums about it. I got my $28+ back once at the ticket counter. I won't waste my time or others doing it again.

Sparks Mexico - Sparks Costalegre


talosian


Sep 17, 2006, 7:33 PM

Post #12 of 30 (3227 views)

Shortcut

Re: [sparks] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply

In Reply To
Anyone consider that they do pay the taxes collected to the mexican government so it can be wasted there.

Everyone is a tourist to the airlines it seems .... so I really doubt they are pocketing the extra.

Just a case of big business and big governement not giving a shit ... especially when it's working in their favor (to be lazy or financial gain).

I think you're just beating your gums about it. I got my $28+ back once at the ticket counter. I won't waste my time or others doing it again.


Sparks and others.

With all due respect, you are in error, the airlines are pocketing the difference. Here is how it works: Everyone buying a ticket where they deplane in Mexico pays the fee. When you fly in, everyone on the plane is given the option of filing out a form in English (for the FM-T) or a form in Spanish. The Spanish form gives a place to indicate if the person is a Mexican national. Both forms ask for the airline and the flight number. When you (Non-Mexican) give your form to Immigration, they ultimately turn it back to the airline (in some form of billing format) and the airline then pays the Mexican government however much the fee is, BUT ONLY FOR THE NUMBER OF TOURIST "APPLICATIONS" TURNED IN. Since there is nothing on the English version allowing one to indicate they are exempt from the fee, this is turned in and the Mexican gvernment paid.

But remember, EVERYONE has paid the fee that is built-in (hidden) in the ultimate ticket price.

Delta says that it does not collect the fee from anyone and pays the fee due from its own corporate pocket. Do I believe this? Yes. When asked why this is done, Delta says they simply factor this "overhead" into their ultimate ticket price. In other words, Delta is doing an end-run around the legality that some flyers are exempt from the fee. It is doing by indirection what it can not do directly by saying they don't collect the fee.

And finally, the airlines bank on the fact that most people will think as you do, which is, they won't "waste (their) time or others doing it again." Yes, it's a lot of B.S. and hoops to jump through for an individual but if you multiply this by all the people who pay when they don't have to, you see there is a lot of $$ flowing into the airlines coffers that shouldn't be going there.

What is my source for the above? Well, first research, then deductive reasoning and finally, a letter from the Associate Counsel from Delta Air Lines, Inc.

So when I "mouth-off" about something, I try to do my due-dilligence, and I have done it here.
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.


Bubba

Sep 17, 2006, 8:28 PM

Post #13 of 30 (3222 views)

Shortcut

Re: [LH Don] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Since the advent of E-Tickets, there is no way to introduce the subject. Calls to CO reservations provides totally new interesting directions like; "we can do nothing at this desk you must have it changed at the airport when you check in". Result, we stood for almost an hour while the desk clerk talked at great length to several CO elements discussing whos job it was and how to change it. After seven years and countless
incounters I have decided to take the easy way, just disput the charges with AMEX and forget about it. Have never had any reply from CO protesting my refusal to pay the tax or
any replys at all.


Can anyone with any sense of the correlative relationship between effort and reward imagine standing around an airport for an hour while a desk clerk talks "at great length to several CO elements" when the ultimate reward for enduring this hideous experience is at best $200Pesos? What kind of grinding and thankless job would most of you endure for $200 Pesos an hour which you might or might not collect?

The notion that the airlines are pocketing and, thus, profiting. from this inefficient tax not of their making is absurd except in the sense that, were the airlines to implement procedures for screening clients for applicability, the cost would be tremendous and not worth the effort. The airlines are moving toward electronic ticketing as rapidly as possible and the savings realized as a result is extraordinary. As pointed out, there is no way to screen on-line purchasers for visa status and the inefficiency and costliness of any point-of-departure screening and refunding procedure would be prohibitive.

The notion that the airlines are keeping this money by building the the incremental tax cost into the gross fare is absurd. Anyone with any knowledge of the accounting procedures for these publicly traded companies knows that jacking reported gross revenues by including taxes collected on behalf of political subdivisions would be illegal to say nothing of foolish.

And, for those of you who wonder why companies such as American Express don´t react to short pays by customers of equivalents of $200Pesos, the reason is simple, Countless billions of dollars of credit card charges hit the books of credit card companies annually. It makes no sense for them to contest these meager charge-backs as the costs would far exceed the benefit they could possibly gain if they prevail in pursuing the skinflint holding back the peanuts for "principle". They simply file the indignant letter accompanying the payment without bothering to read it, pay the airline their claimed due and move on.

NOTE; Talosian´s "due diligence" comments about the monitoring of migratory forms for tourists, transmigrants, business people and consular visitors as a tax collection tool deserve comment but came in after this post. I´ll address that posting later. No time now.






(This post was edited by Bubba on Sep 17, 2006, 10:17 PM)


LH Don

Sep 18, 2006, 11:34 AM

Post #14 of 30 (3159 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Bubba] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Bubba,
Since you elected to attack me personally, I feel like I must return the favor. Why can't you
comment to postings like most people without the addition of personal attacks? You write like an inteligent person but your attacks would obviously not be welcome in a board room
or any business meeting. As stated your education is obvious, but you certainly never belonged to the Debaiting Team. As far as heart attacks over "inconsequental matters" you
are the one who feels it worth a considerable amount of your time to post your opinions
and attack/ insult anyone who dares to write anything that you do not agree with.
My intent with this posting was to alert legal Foreign residents of Mexico to facts related to
seven year problem. Have talked to many folks who still are not totally aware of this subject. Have no other reasons, and unlike you would never try to establish for anyone what
level of their money was "peanuts" or to tell them what should or should not be considered
"inconsequental matters" in their lifes, not yours.
Don La Huerta


Bubba

Sep 18, 2006, 12:32 PM

Post #15 of 30 (3143 views)

Shortcut

Re: [LH Don] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
your attacks would obviously not be welcome in a board room
or any business meeting


Well, LH, maybe that would explain why I kept changing jobs.

If you feel I was bullying you with my comments, imagine how that poor desk clerk must have felt when you put him or her through the wringer over that tourist tax over which that clerk had no authority or control. Imagine how others needing that clerk´s services must have felt as they waited interminably for you to conclude your quest for justice in failure. If you ever wonder where this obsession is going to take you, just read Talosian´s "due diligence" post on this tax matter where he asserts solid conclusions based on weak suppositions. Keep digging that hole for yourself and you´ll catch up with him someday.


Gringal

Sep 18, 2006, 1:33 PM

Post #16 of 30 (3126 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Bubba] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Alas, Bubba, I find myself agreeing with you and with Talosian, simulataneously. A unique experience for me.

As you so eloquently pointed out, we will go mad and take others with us if we sweat the small stuff.

But, without the dauntless crusaders among us, who would start the class action suits that sometimes result in justice being done for the consumer?

I can't imagine personally hassling away at this issue, but I do object to the ding in the ticket.


Bubba

Sep 19, 2006, 7:28 AM

Post #17 of 30 (3078 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Gringal] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Good point, Gringal. You are right that it is good to have those among us who are not inclined to simply pass over these things. I was simply pointing out that dwelling on these matters can prove unhealthy and lead nowhere. Both viewpoints have merit.

Aviacsa has a program where the fifth flight on any particular route is free. Since we find ourselves flying often between Guadalajara and Tuxtla Gutierrez these days in connection with our home remodeling project in San Cristobal, We went into Aviacsa to get a free flight only to find, in a typical Mexican catch, that our ticket stubs were insufficient proof that we had taken four previous flights. That will cost us over $400USD although we were following what we thought were proper instructions for claiming the free ticket. We have come to expect this here over the past five + years. Water off a duck´s back. For most of us, we simply move on and anticipate the next big surprise. Perhaps we are lucky we have some willing to bulldog these issues. My guess, however, is that the only people who will benefit in the long run are the attorneys.


talosian


Oct 2, 2006, 8:29 PM

Post #18 of 30 (2963 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Bubba] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Bubba said: "It makes no sense for them to contest these meager charge-backs as the costs would far exceed the benefit they could possibly gain if they prevail in pursuing the skinflint holding back the peanuts for 'principle'. "

It appears Bubba feels that if people should have principles when it comes to being overcharged (cheated) , they should only become activated at a certain dollar/peso amount. Am I right Bubba?

And I find it amusing how Bubba figures anyone who complains about being overcharged/cheated is a skinflint. Way to go Bubba, put down anyone who doesn't have money to throw away or lose.

A real piece of work as I have observed before.
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.


mkdutch

Oct 5, 2006, 2:27 PM

Post #19 of 30 (2864 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
That $20 bucks/trip can add up, though. We also regularly make one or more trips to Lakeside from the USA; to date it's averaged about 1/1/2 per year. So over the past 8 years, that's 8 + 4 X $20 each for the two of us, or $480. That combined with the much higher airfares makes commuting more pricey; our fares are now between 2-3 times what they were in 1999. We found early on, BTW, that trying to recover that illegal charge was one royal pain in the arse, so we never have.


talosian


Oct 5, 2006, 2:40 PM

Post #20 of 30 (2857 views)

Shortcut

Re: [mkdutch] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
That's what the airline counts on, that people won't go to the trouble. But you know you have now made Bubba's "skinflint" list for having even made a complaint about it.
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.


mkdutch

Oct 6, 2006, 7:30 AM

Post #21 of 30 (2798 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
With all due respect, I don't give a "diddly" what anyone thinks I look like, talk like or their opinions about my opinions. That's the joy of being over 60, retired, financially comfortable and not dependent on anyones' opinion for my physical or psychological well-being. So fire away, and all you will get from me is "Quack, quack" as the barbs roll off my backside...=^..^=....Asi, Buena Suerte a los todos de ustedes...Dutch


talosian


Oct 6, 2006, 11:42 AM

Post #22 of 30 (2769 views)

Shortcut

Re: [mkdutch] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Well said MK. I (should) have the same attitude as you and then the crap flying from "him" would not bother me.
"When all logical explanations have failed, we must look to the illogical for the answer.


jennifer rose

Oct 6, 2006, 4:47 PM

Post #23 of 30 (2740 views)

Shortcut

Re: [talosian] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post |
Address the issue, not the messenger. Or risk The Lock.


Georgia


Oct 7, 2006, 11:12 AM

Post #24 of 30 (2690 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Bubba] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Actually, Bubba, and everyone else who doesn't get it: the airlines are indeed pocketing the fee when those who hold other types of visas don't fill out the FMT form. I am a retired gov't tax attorney, and when this first came to my attention, I researched the process in great detail. It is fraud. The fact that it hasn't been prosecuted is due to the fact that you have two jurisdictions involved: Mexico and another country, usually the USA. The tax is collected in the US and is owed either as a refund to the party who does not owe it or to the Mexican government. Since the Mexican government does get their fair share from the FMT forms turned in, they really don't care. They get what is due them. It is the non-FMT visa holders who are harmed, and they do not, have not, will not, complain.

I complained. I never pay the tax. Ever.

Oh, and whoever said that Delta eats the cost: Delta refunded me the tax. If they were eating the cost they wouldn't have refunded the tax, would they? Their counsel was wrong. That does happen, you know.


Bubba

Oct 7, 2006, 2:27 PM

Post #25 of 30 (2664 views)

Shortcut

Re: [Georgia] Mexican Tourist Tax Up Date

Can't Post | Private Reply
Actually, Bubba, and everyone else who doesn't get it: the airlines are indeed pocketing the fee when those who hold other types of visas don't fill out the FMT form. I am a retired gov't tax attorney, and when this first came to my attention, I researched the process in great detail. It is fraud.

Ah, but Georgia Darling:

You forget that Bubba is also a retired government official having been a (hold your breath) National Bank Examiner for the Regional Administrator of National Banks, 12th Region (San Francisco), Comptroller of the Currency, U.S. Treasury Department, Washington,DC. Therefore, I know from years of experience what it is like to " (research) the process in detail." yet do nothing about it when all is said and done except serve my own needs. In my case, the process I researched in detail was the regulatory framework of the National banking system whereas you devoted copious amounts of time to researching and pinpointing massive fraud in the airline industry. We both got what we deserved. You never pay the fraudulently imposed tourist tax and I never pay for services for which the banks repeatedly screw their less knowledgable clients with exhorbitant fees. Like most of us who worked for the government at all levels, we had all the time in the world to identify and bemoan problems we could never rectify, expediently ignore the problems so identified and use the knowledge gained at taxpayer expense for our own personal benefit. Then, when we retired having realized that governmental attorneys and banking experts could do nothing to halt the corruption in the powerful airline and banking industries , we resorted to pontificating among the great unwashed about arcane matters knowledge of which is less important here at Lake Chapala than the location of the nearest stomach pump.

If you front for me on my next overseas airline ticket so I don´t have to pay that piddly tax, I´ll get get you free banking services at Napa National Bank which will also throw in three cheeseburgers and a chocolate malted at In-and-Out for initial deposits of $500 or more.

One more thing on that tourist tax. FM-3 holders should rightly pay that tax since all they are really is tourists on extended visas with no more commitment to Mexico than an FMT holder. I say everyone pays the tax and Mexican citizens can apply for a rebate at a later date. This is beneficial in two ways. (1) Incremental tax revenues for the Mexican government would be significant and (2) an entire new bureaucratic agency would be born to administer this trough upon which the masses of extended family members of government functionaries could feed. I anticipate a minimum of 500 employees would be needed.
First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All
 
 
Search for (advanced search) Powered by Gossamer Forum v.1.2.4