What are the VAT rates for different goods and services?

The following are the main VAT rates currently in force:

  • Standard (20%) is charged on most purchases and expenses.
  • Zero (0%) is for life necessities, e.g. train tickets, flights, books, newspapers, food (except hot prepared food to eat in or takeaway which is standard rated).
  • Reduced (5%) is applied to domestic fuel & power, energy saving materials.
  • Exempt (no VAT charged) is for transactions such as bank charges, postage, insurance, pension contributions and mortgage interest.

For detailed information on VAT and the rates, HMRC have a page that lists the goods and services along with applicable VAT rates that apply.