A taxing time for pop up
Is a space offering tax advice… a pop up shop ?
Once again, the Australian Tax Office (ATO) is hosting a number of “pop-up” shops across the country, to help ordinary Australians “get their tax returns right”. This year they’re opening 35 drop-in locations (no appointments necessary), with ATO staff on hand to provide “advice and on-the-spot demonstrations to help people gain confidence using the ATO’s digital products and services”^
Most of those ATO pop up shops will only open for a day or two. Some started in early July, others won’t open until September. They’ll be in suburban shopping centres (and a train station) – and in “community hubs” such as local libraries and university campuses.#
ATO Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson says the pop-ups are “deliberately set up in places where you will see us as you go about your day. Just drop in and we’ll be happy to answer your questions”. Those pop up shops will make it “easier for people to connect to the ATO online” said Ms. Anderson.
Another pop up business is actually a franchise of tax accountants… based in Western Australia (18 locations around Perth and 2 others in WA) – also 9 other locations on the east coast. But most of those Pop Up Tax Shops are actually open all year ‘round (in permanent locations ?). Only a few, like the Melbourne Pop Up Tax Shop, are within shopping centres and for limited times (Werribee Plaza is open from 2nd July through to 9th September)* And it seems the same “Stephen Burns” (franchisor) will be at 10 of the Perth locations, as well as Nerang in Qld ! The “Pop Up Tax Shop” service invites customers to turn up at any location (no appointment necessary…), with documentation to prepare a tax return on the spot.
Are these pop up tax offices really “pop up” ? Hmm, probably not. Most are certainly temporary (and seasonal, you’ll only see them around tax time…) – and they do offer a specific service. But I can’t imagine much of a “wow” factor in any of these installations… nothing unique, memorable or entertaining ! And not quite the sort of event you’d tell your (social media) friends about…
^ source : ato.gov.au / ATO pops up in the community
* source : popuptaxshop.com.au
images : Google Images – pop up tax shops, ATO pop up shop
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