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  • Tax Time Toolkit – Aviation

    This Tax Time Toolkit for the aviation industry contains practical and tailored information to help those in the aviation industry understand what they can and can’t claim in their tax return.

    You can download a copy in portable document format, see Tax Time Toolkit – Aviation (PDF, 645KB)This link will download a file.

    We encourage you to share this information with your staff, clients, members and networks.

    You’ll find tips and guides as well as ‘ready to use’ messages you can adapt for your own communication channels.

    In this guide:

    Occupation guides

    Helpful occupation guides and information for tax time:

    Common claims

    Common deductions those in the aviation industry claim:

    Ready-to-use Tax Time messages

    Below are a range of messages you can use (or adapt) for your own communication channels, such as websites, intranets, newsletters and social media platforms.


    Headline: Supporting you this tax time

    It’s tax time again and the ATO wants to help you get your clothing and laundry claims right.

    With a few exceptions, clothing is a private expense. Conventional clothing (including footwear) can't be deducted as a work-related expense, even if your employer requires you to wear it and you only wear these items of clothing at work.

    You can claim a deduction for costs you incur to buy, hire, repair or replace clothing, uniforms and footwear you wear at work if it's:

    • Protective clothing you wear to protect yourself from specific risks of injury or illness at work. The clothing must have protective features or functions (for example, steel-capped boots for airside operators or aircraft engineers).
    • Occupation specific clothing that distinctly identifies you as a person associated with a particular profession, trade or occupation
    • A compulsory uniform which must be sufficiently distinctive to your organisation so that a casual observer can clearly identify you as working for a particular employer, or identify the products or services provided by your employer. To be considered compulsory, you must be expressly required to wear it by a workplace agreement or policy, which is strictly and consistently enforced.
    • A non-compulsory uniform you wear to work that is listed on the Register of Approved Occupational Clothing with AusIndustry (check with your employer if you're not sure)

    You can claim a deduction for the cost of washing, drying and ironing any of these types of clothing and uniforms. This also includes laundromat and dry-cleaning expenses. If your laundry claim (excluding dry-cleaning expenses) is $150 or less, you don't need to keep records, but you still need to calculate and be able to show how you worked out your claim. This isn't an automatic deduction.


    Jackson is a pilot for a large commercial airline. His employer provides him with a uniform. Jackson is required to wear a uniform consisting of a white button up shirt, black jacket and black pants. All items are embroidered with his employer's logo.

    Jackson can't claim a deduction for the cost of purchasing his embroidered shirts, jacket and pants as these are provided by his employer. If Jackson had to pay for the uniform himself and was not reimbursed, he could claim a deduction for the cost of these items.

    Jackson is responsible for laundering the uniforms supplied by his employer, therefore he is entitled to claim a deduction for the laundry expenses he has incurred.


    Erika is a flight attendant employed by ABC Airlines. ABC Airlines requires flight attendants to purchase their shirts (which have their logo embroidered) through the airline but they can wear any type of black skirt or trousers. ABC Airlines’ uniform policy sets out that it is compulsory for Erika to wear a particular brand of black leather court shoes with a two-centimetre heel. Erika doesn’t wear these shoes outside of work and failure by Erika to comply with the airline's uniform directive and orders of dress will result in disciplinary action.

    Erika can claim the cost of the ABC Airlines logo embroidered shirt and the black leather court shoes, but not the black skirt or trousers.

    The ABC Airlines shirt is a unique and distinctive part of the uniform that she purchased herself. Her black leather court shoes also form an integral part of her compulsory uniform as specified in the ABC Airline guidelines.

    However, her black skirt or trousers are not claimable as they are not unique or distinctive to ABC Airlines even though they form part of the uniform.

    Erika can also claim the cost of laundering her ABC Airlines shirt.

    Tips and tricks:

    A reasonable basis for calculating your laundry claim is:

    • $1 per load if the load is just made up of only work-related clothing, or
    • 50 cents per load if other laundry items are included.

    Repair and dry-cleaning expenses are based on the actual cost you incurred for those services.

    Use the myDeductions tool in the ATO app to help keep track of your work-related expenses. You can upload your expenses to pre-fill your myTax return or email it straight to your registered tax agent. Download the app today at

    For more information, speak with your tax agent or visit

    End of example

    Suggested social media posts for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn profiles

    Example: social media

    Not sure what deductions you can claim in your tax return? The ATO can help.

    Check out the ATO’s tailored industry guides at:

    End of example


    Example: social media

    Attention flight crew and pilots! Here are some tips on the deductions you may be able to claim this tax time:

    • You can claim a deduction for accommodation, meals and incidentals that you incur when you travel and sleep away from home overnight for work.
    • You can claim a deduction for the cost of rehydrating moisturisers used to combat the abnormal drying of skin due to an aircraft’s pressurised environment.
    • You can claim a deduction for visa application fees when you’re required to enter a country as part of your job.
    • You can claim a deduction for the cost of buying, hiring, repairing or cleaning compulsory uniforms.
    • You can't claim a deduction for hairdressing, cosmetics or hair products, even if you’re expected to be well groomed. Grooming expenses and products are private expenses.
    • You can't claim for expenses for travel between your home and the place of departure.

    Find out more at

    End of example


    Example: social media

    Attention pilots and flight crew! To make tax time stress free, check out the ATO's industry specific guides at

    End of example


    Example: social media

    The ATO is here to provide support during tax time. Visit the ATO's industry specific guides at

    End of example

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      Last modified: 07 Jun 2021QC 59344