If we can give you one piece of advice as a new arrival in Germany, it would be to go to the VAT office to pick up your VAT forms as soon as you get your new military ID! One very helpful benefit to you as part of the military community is having access to the tax relief programs when making purchases on the German economy.
If you plan to use a VAT form for your hotel or TLF stay (or rental car) when you first arrive to Germany, it is important that you understand the rules with regard to using the VAT form correctly.
Normally, a VAT form must be dated the same day or earlier than the invoice date of the good or service you are purchasing. That is a little difficult if you check into your hotel or TLF as soon as you arrive in Germany. There is one very important exception to the rule when you stay at a hotel, TLF or use a rental car. The “7 Day Grace Period” exception can save you from having to pay unnecessary taxes that would otherwise be eliminated if you follow this exception correctly. You can read more about the “7 Day Grace Period” here.