• Keeping travel expense records

    There are specific record-keeping requirements for travel expenses, depending on whether your travel allowance is shown on your payment summary, whether your travel was domestic or overseas, the length of your travel and your occupation.

    Vehicle expenses – other than a car

    If you're eligible to claim expenses for using a borrowed car or a vehicle other than a car, you need to keep receipts for:

    • fuel and oil
    • repairs and servicing
    • interest on a car loan
    • lease payments
    • insurance
    • registration.

    Travel expenses

    If your travel allowance is shown on your payment summary and you want to make a claim against it, you must have written evidence for the whole of your claim, not just the excess over the reasonable amount.

    The records you need to keep for travel expenses for fares, accommodation, food, drink and incidentals depend on the length of your trip and if it is domestic or international.

    To claim meal, accommodation and incidental expenses you incurred when you travelled away overnight for work:

    • the travel must be undertaken in performing your work duties
    • you must only be working away from home for a relatively short period or periods of time (not living away from home)
    • you must not have incurred the expenses because of a choice you made about where to live
    • you must have a permanent home at a location away from the work location to which you are travelling
    • you must have paid the expenses yourself and not have been reimbursed for them.

    If you travel for six or more nights in a row, you may need to keep a travel diary (see tables below) in which you record the dates, places, times and duration of your activities and travel. The purpose of a travel diary is to allow accurate calculation of the employment-related and private elements of your trip. If the travel was partly private, you can claim only the work-related part.

    If you did not receive a travel allowance

     

    Domestic travel

    Overseas travel

    Written evidence

    Travel diary

    Written evidence

    Travel diary

    Travel less than 6 nights in a row

    Yes

    No

    Yes

    No

    Travel 6 or more nights in a row

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    If you did receive a travel allowance

    If you received a travel allowance and your claim does not exceed the reasonable allowance amount:

     

    Domestic travel

    Overseas travel

    Written evidence

    Travel diary

    Written evidence

    Travel diary

    Travel less than 6 nights in a row

    No

    No

    Written evidence is required for overseas accommodation expenses but not for food, drink and incidentals

    No

    Travel 6 or more nights in a row

    No

    No

    Written evidence is required for overseas accommodation expenses – but not for food, drink and incidentals

    Members of an international air crew – No if you limit your claim to the amount of allowance you received

    Other people – Yes

    If you received a travel allowance and your claim exceeds the reasonable allowance amount:

     

    Domestic travel

    Overseas travel

    Written evidence

    Travel diary

    Written evidence

    Travel diary

    Travel less than 6 nights in a row

    Yes

    No

    Yes

    No

    Travel 6 or more nights in a row

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    Members of an international air crew - No if you limit your claim to the amount of allowance you received

    Other people – Yes

    See also:

    Last modified: 13 Jun 2017QC 31952