It costs a lot of money getting to work every day. Whether you catch the train, ride the bus, or pay for parking, it all adds up to be a lot of money throughout the year.
If you spend $10 a day commuting, and work a normal 48 weeks in the year, that’s $2,400 you spend on commuting each and every year. Unfortunately, the expense you front in order to commute to and from work isn’t actually a tax deduction.
So, what is a travel tax deduction then? Well, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide we will discuss what a tax deduction is and how you can claim travel tax deductions. So, sit back, relax, and let’s keep on reading below.
What is your taxable income
Your taxable income is money generated from your employer or your work. Your taxable income also includes:
- PAYG summaries
- Pensions and government allowances
- Interest earned (banks etc)
- Rental property income
- Business income
- Other income earned (capital gains etc)
What qualifies as a tax deduction?
There are only three main requirements that qualify an expense as a tax deduction, which is calculated against your income:
- You must have spent the money and not have been reimbursed
- It must be related to your job
- You must have a record to prove it
What constitutes an expense as “related” to your job you might ask?
Well by the sounds it seems commuting to and from your work is related to your job, so why isn’t it a tax deduction?
Let’s look at an example.
What makes an expense related to your work?
For an expense to be directly related to your job, it has to be directly related to your ability to generate income. The best way for us to explain this is with an example:
If you are working as a builder, the purchase of tools that are essential to your job will be an expense directly relating to your income because it would be impossible to do the job without them.
However, if you need to drive and park to work, the expense will not be directly related to your income, because it does not directly relate to generating your income. In fact, your commute to work isn’t within working hours, so you physically aren’t generating income during this time.
See the difference?
If you’re unsure, One Click Life’s easy-to-use platform will help you qualify your deductions – along with some help from our qualified tax team.
So how does travel become a tax deduction?
A work related travel expense that is able to be claimed as a tax deduction has to be essential for you to generate income. So what does this look like and what does this mean?
Let’s look at some examples for what makes a work related travel expense:
- Going to see clients while working
- If you are unable to house heavy equipment anywhere other than your house
- Travelling for conferences or work related education courses
- Travel between separate workplace or offices
- If you work from home for part of the day and then have to go to your workplace
What are the sorts of travel expenses you can deduct
When we are talking about travel expenses, are we just talking about fuel/transport expenses? Not at all.
Travel expenses can come in a range of different forms when you are travelling for work:
- Accommodation if you’ve had to travel to a new city
- Incidental expenses for laundry and more
- Transport (bus, train, plane, car)
- Toll roads
- Parking tickets
- Car hire
- Meals if they are not included in your overnight stay
- Bags that are used for work travel
Do you need to keep a travel diary?
It isn’t compulsory to use a travel diary, but you should definitely consider how you’re keeping track of all of your expenses – not just the ones you’re incurring while travelling.
Using the old paper method is untidy, not sustainable and is easy to use. By using the One Click Life platform you can easily keep track of all your expenses from your phone so that you never accidentally forget anything at tax time.
Maximising your tax return with an online tax agent
There’s going to be more travel expenses that you may be eligible to pay that aren’t on this list because everyone’s situation
The best way to claim the most you can (which will maximise your money) is with One Click Life.
The more you deduct, the less tax you pay and the more money you can spend on yourself. Clearly, you will want to deduct the most you can, and the sure-fire way to do that is with OCL’s easy-to-use platform.
If you can claim OCL’s fees back on tax as a deduction too, why wouldn’t you use our platform to minimise your tax payable?
One Click Life offers online tax returns at your fingertips in an easy-to-use platform run by some of the best heads in the industry. Your tax return can be done in just 60 seconds and is overseen by one of our pros!
How easy and stress free is that?
Taxes, health insurance, and wills can be time-consuming and tedious. Our app allows you to be able to do this fuss-free, giving you a simple way to organise, track and manage all of your life admin in one place.
Let One Click Life take care of your tax return, and life’s essential tasks so you can spend more time doing the things you love.