Part of Fuel tax

Fuel tax – Consumers

How to register, report, apply for a refund or pay fuel taxes in Alberta.

Important notices

Fuel tax update

The fuel tax relief program saves Albertans some or all of the provincial fuel tax when oil prices are high.

Over the last quarterly review period, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) prices averaged below $80 per barrel, meaning the fuel tax on clear gasoline and clear diesel will be 13 cents per litre between April 1, 2024 and June 30, 2024. The fuel tax on marked fuel will be 4 cents per litre.

Alberta’s government will continue to review the fuel tax quarterly and provide another update before July 1.

For more information, see:

Notice about terms on this page

The Government of Alberta recognizes that many First Nations people and communities in the province prefer not to describe themselves as Indians/Indian bands. These terms have been used where necessary to reflect their legal meaning in the federal Indian Act.

Introduction

Tax and Revenue Administration (TRA) administers the Fuel Tax Act, which currently provides for:

  • collection of fuel taxes
  • purchase of fuel exempt from fuel tax for eligible consumers
  • refund or rebate of fuel tax to eligible consumers and fuel sellers
  • International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) registration and reporting. See IFTA for information.

Who can purchase fuel tax-exempt?

Armed forces of another country

Armed forces of another country stationed in Alberta may purchase tax-exempt clear fuel.

Farmers

The Alberta Farm Fuel Benefit (AFFB) Program allows eligible producers to receive a 9-cent-per-litre provincial fuel tax exemption on the purchase of dyed gasoline and diesel. A farmer, or custom farmer, must present an active AFFB number to the fuel seller at the time of purchase. See Farm fuel and rural utility programs for information about eligibility and how to apply for an AFFB number.

Foreign operator of air transportation service

A foreign operator of a commercial air transportation service on an international flight originating in Alberta is exempt from tax on clear aviation fuel at the time the fuel is purchased. See Information Circular FT-4, Alberta Fuel Tax Exemptions, Refunds and Rebates for more information.

Foreign embassies and diplomats

Fuel purchased by a foreign government including a foreign embassy, diplomat, or consular office, is exempt from tax. See Foreign Representatives in Canada to confirm eligibility.

Government of Canada

The Government of Canada may purchase clear fuel exempt from fuel tax by providing the fuel seller an exemption certificate at the time of purchase. See Information Circular FT-4 – Alberta Fuel Tax Exemptions, Refunds and Rebates for more information.

Indians and bands

Eligible consumers may purchase clear fuel tax-exempt from a registered Alberta Indian Tax Exemption (AITE) retailer on reserve in Alberta. For more information, see AITE.

Mine operators

A mine operator may purchase tax-exempt liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for use in Alberta mining operations. See Information Circular FT-4 – Alberta Fuel Tax Exemptions, Refunds and Rebates for more information.

Railways

Registered railways purchase locomotive fuel exempt from fuel tax for use in a locomotive. They then remit the tax payable on locomotive fuel consumed in Alberta – whether purchased in Alberta or outside Alberta – to Tax and Revenue Administration (TRA). All locomotive fuel users are required to register and complete a monthly return. See How to register and How to file for more information.

Tax Exempt Fuel User (TEFU) and other eligible consumers

Watch the video: Who is Eligible for the Tax Exempt Fuel User (TEFU) program.

Consumers may purchase marked fuel (gasoline or diesel) for use in unlicensed equipment or for residential heating by providing the fuel seller a valid TEFU certificate at the time of purchase. Marked fuel is partially tax-exempt with a reduced tax rate of 4 cents per litre, versus 13 cents per litre for clear fuel.

A commercial or government entity, other than the Government of Canada, may apply for an exemption certificate to use marked fuel in unlicensed equipment or for heating purposes.

See How to register for more information about applying for a TEFU number.

Eligibility for a fuel tax rebate or refund

Situations where entities may apply for a fuel tax rebate or refund include:

  • Fuel tax was paid in error by foreign embassies, diplomats or the Government of Canada.
  • Fuel was used for a non-motive purpose (e.g., injected into a well-bore, used as feedstock in a chemical manufacturing process, etc.).
  • Clear fuel was used in unlicensed equipment by a consumer with a valid TEFU certificate at the time the fuel was purchased, and Tax and Revenue Administration (TRA) is satisfied marked fuel was not reasonably available as a result of either:
    • no bulk fuel dealer with marked fuel available for sale within a 50 kilometre radius of the applicant’s location. The 50 kilometre radius is measured by “as the crow flies” or the most direct path between 2 points and does not consider roads or highways in determining the most direct pathway; or
    • fuel was consumed in an operation where clear fuel must be used and there was a legal restriction (e.g., zoning) prohibiting the consumer from having more than one storage tank.
  • Commercial airline carriers may apply for a rebate of fuel tax for flights that do not meet the up-front exemption, but where one of the following situations occurs:
    • international flights of domestic carriers
    • international flights that have a stopover elsewhere in Canada
    • international charter and other non-scheduled flights
  • A farmer or custom farmer with an active AFFB number at the time of purchase may apply for a fuel tax rebate if the clear fuel is used in eligible farming activities, and one of the following situations apply:
    • Fuel is used in a vehicle registered under the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA).
    • Fuel is consumed in vehicles used for both farming and non-farming business (for example: commercial) operations.
    • Marked fuel was not available within a 50 kilometre radius of the farming operations. The 50 kilometre radius is measured by “as the crow flies”, or the most direct path between 2 points, and does not consider roads or highways in determining the most direct pathway.

For more information, see:

How to register

Both fuel tax remitters and claimants are required to register. The following instructions apply to railways, consumers applying for a rebate or refund of tax, and consumers applying for a TEFU number.

For detailed instructions, see:

Railways and consumers applying for a rebate or refund of tax

Tax Exempt Fuel User (TEFU) consumers

Step 1. Create or log in to your Alberta.ca Account

  • Create a basic account or log in to your Alberta.ca Account.

Log in to Alberta.ca Account

Step 2: Sign in and select Online Registration

  • After you create an Alberta.ca Account, login to TRACS. You will need to sign in using your Alberta.ca Account user name and password. Once you log in, you will be redirected to TRACS.
  • Select 'Online Registration'.
  • Select the appropriate program from the Program Name menu.

Step 3. Complete and submit the online registration form

After you submit your registration, you will receive a pending status notification and a reference number. TRA may need to contact you for further information.

Step 4: Once approved

You will be notified by email that your approval letter or exemption certificate is available in your TRACS account.

How to file

A claim for a refund of fuel tax paid must be received by TRA not later than 3 years from the end of the year in which the fuel purchase occurred. Claims can be filed monthly as needed.

Railways are required to submit the Alberta fuel tax return to TRA on or before the 28th day of the month following the period end. A return must be filed for each calendar month, whether or not activity occurred.

Step 1: Complete the return/claim in TRACS

Step 2: Submit your return/claim

  • Submit the return/claim in TRACS and print or save the confirmation page for your records.
  • A penalty will be charged if a railway return is received by TRA after the due date.

Step 3: Receive your refund or remit the amount owing

  • For claims, you will receive your refund by direct deposit – see Set up direct deposit.
  • Railways must remit the amount owing – see Making payments.
    • Interest will be charged on late remittances and will accrue until the balance is paid in full.
  • If there were changes made to your return/claim, a letter of assessment will be available in your TRACS account under View Assessment Status

Set up direct deposit

  • Log in to your TRACS account.
  • Select 'Manage Direct Deposit'.
  • Enter your banking information and contact information.
  • Click 'Submit'.
  • For an instructional video, see TRACS videos.

How to pay

Maintain your account in TRACS

TRA Client Self-Service (TRACS) is a secure online system for authorized Tax and Revenue Administration (TRA) clients to conveniently conduct business with TRA. You can do the following tasks in TRACS:

  • file a return/claim
  • submit documents
  • file a Notice of Objection
  • manage direct deposit
  • view reports
  • confirm receipt and completion of submitted returns/claims
  • view status of prior assessments, financial details and notices of assessment
  • access financial information and view account period balances
  • update address and contact information
  • delegate account access to other employees or authorized individuals
  • request for waiver of penalties and interest

For more details, instructional videos and to log in to your TRACS account, see TRACS information.

How to authorize a representative

An individual with proper authorization for the business may consent to the release of confidential information about account(s) with TRA to a specific firm and/or individual.

An individual with proper authorization for the business includes a(n):

  • owner
  • partner of a partnership
  • corporate director
  • trustee of an estate
  • individual with delegated authority

Step 1: Fill out the Alberta Consent Form

Step 2: Submit the consent form

  • Submit your completed consent form to TRA.

Step 3: Representative receives PIN (only for TRACS access)

  • TRA will review the consent form to ensure it is complete.
  • TRA will issue a PIN number to the individual via secure email. TRACS access can only be provided to an individual.

The representative must enter the PIN and account number to access the TRACS account. See How to access TRACS for instructions.

Publications, forms and videos

PDF form issues

Fillable PDF forms do not open properly on some mobile devices and web browsers. To fill in and save the form:

  1. Save the PDF form to your computer – click or right-click the link and download the form.
  2. Open the PDF form with Adobe Reader. Fill it in and save it.

If you are still having problems opening the form, contact PDF form technical support.

Sign up for updates

Subscribe to TRA's publications and announcements

Contact

Connect with Tax and Revenue Administration

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-427-3044
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
Fax: 780-427-0348
Email: [email protected]

Previous Overview