VAT on books and e-books in German speaking countries

When you calculate your book prices for the German speaking markets, you have to take into account that VAT is always included for prices shown to customers in the stores, not added when checking out. But when entering the prices in your aggregators’ websites, it’s different. Amazon KDP, for example, lets you enter a price including VAT while Createspace, an Amazon company too, lets you enter Euro prices without VAT.

These are the VAT rates you have to apply:


  • VAT / sales tax on e-Books: 19 %
  • VAT / sales tax on books: 7 %


  • VAT / sales tax on e-Books: 20 %
  • VAT / sales tax on books: 10 %


  • VAT / sales tax on e-Books: 8 %
  • VAT / sales tax on books: 2,5 %

If you forget the sales tax, you simply end up earning less from your titles.

How do you get from price without VAT to a VAT price – and back? Just use these formulas:

  • (Price w/o VAT) = ((Price w VAT) / (100+VAT))*100
  • (Price w VAT) = ((Price w/o VAT) * (100+VAT)

About Matthias Matting

Born 1966. University degree in physics, journalist for major news magazines for more than 20 years. Started self publishing in 2011 when KDP came to Germany, subsequently became the author of the Amazon bestselling eBook 2011. Started blog in early 2013, now a leading information resource for authors in Germany. Currently working part time with a German publisher and as an author / expert / speaker / freelance journalist. Published around 50 titles so far with total sales of approx. 180.000, mostly non-fiction.


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