Makers of caravans in the UK will no doubt be pondering this very question following the UK Customs and Excise directive on 20 April 2010 that to be eligible for VAT zero rating a caravan must now be at least 2.55 metres wide. This is an increase from the previous minimum width of 2.3 metres.

Too bad if you make caravans 2.4 metres wide. You have to charge more VAT when you sell them.

I can readily accept the notion of NZ MAF inspectors travelling around the country with rulers to ensure fishermen are not keeping snapper less than 27 cm long but I’m struggling a bit with a picture of VAT inspectors in the UK getting rulers out to determine whether something should be subject to tax.

You wouldn’t want to get it wrong just for the sake of 1 mm or so would you?

Perhaps the obesity epidemic in the UK has reached such levels their Government has identified a social imperative in encouraging the manufacture of wider caravans.


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