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Gaming attendant expenses G–O

Details on claiming gaming attendant expenses.

Last updated 2 June 2024

Glasses and contact lenses

You can't claim a deduction for prescription glasses or contact lenses, even if you need to wear them while working. These are private expenses.

Grooming expenses

You can't claim a deduction for hairdressing, cosmetics, hair and skin care products, even if:

  • you may receive an allowance for grooming
  • your employer expects you to be well groomed when at work.

All grooming expenses and products are private expenses.

Laundry and maintenance

You can claim a deduction for the cost you incur to wash, dry and iron clothing you wear at work if it's:

  • occupation specific and not a conventional, everyday piece of clothing such as black pants and a white button up shirt
  • a uniform either non-compulsory and registered by your employer on the Register of Approved Occupational Clothing or compulsory.

This also includes laundromat and dry-cleaning expenses.

We consider that a reasonable basis for working out your laundry claim is:

  • $1 per load if it only contains clothing you wear at work from one of the categories above
  • 50c per load if you mix personal items of clothing with work clothing from one of the categories above.

You can claim the actual costs you incurred for repairing 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 will still need to calculate and be able to show how you worked out your claim. This isn't an automatic deduction.

Example: work clothing laundered and maintained by employer

Ramesh is a gaming attendant at a casino and is required to wear a logoed shirt and vest provided by the casino. He wears his own long black pants and black shoes.

At the end of each shift, Ramesh places the shirt and vest in a washing hamper at the casino, and these clothes are collected and laundered by a professional cleaning company. He takes his pants home and washes them himself.

Ramesh can't claim the cost of laundering or repairing any of these clothes, as the pants are conventional clothing, and the shirt and vest are laundered and maintained by his employer.

End of example

Licences permits and cards

You can’t claim the cost to get your initial licence, regulatory permit, cards or certificates to get a job.

You can claim a deduction for the additional costs you incur to get or renew your licence, regulatory permit, card or certificate to continue to perform your work duties. For example, if you need to have a gaming licence to get your job, you can’t claim the initial cost of getting it. However, you can claim the cost of to renew it during the period you are working.

Meal and snack expenses

You can't claim a deduction for the cost of food, drink or snacks you consume in the course of your normal working hours, even if you receive a meal allowance. These are private expenses.

You can claim:

  • overtime meal expenses, but only if you buy and eat the meal while you are performing overtime and you receive an overtime meal allowance under an industrial award
  • the cost of meals you incur when you are travelling overnight for the purpose of carrying out your employment duties (travel expenses).

Example: no deduction for food and drink expenses

Hong is a croupier at a casino. The casino operates 24 hours per day and Hong works the late night or early morning shift. When she takes her meal break, Hong buys a coffee and a sandwich or hot meal.

Hong can't claim a deduction for the cost of her food and drink expenses. The expenses are private.

End of example

Overtime meal expenses

You can claim a deduction for the cost of a meal you buy and eat when you work overtime, if all of the following apply:

  • you receive an overtime meal allowance under an industrial law, award or agreement
  • the allowance is on your income statement or payment summary as a separate allowance
  • you include the allowance in your tax return as income.

You can't claim a deduction if the allowance is part of your salary and wages and not included as a separate allowance on your income statement or payment summary.

You generally need to get and keep written evidence, such as receipts, when you claim a deduction. However, each year we set an amount you can claim for overtime meal expenses without receipts. We call this the 'reasonable amount'. If you receive an overtime meal allowance, are claiming a deduction and spent:

  • up to reasonable amount, you don’t have to get and keep receipts
  • more than the reasonable amount, you must get and keep receipts for your expenses.

In all cases, you need to be able to show you spent the money and how you work out your claim.

Example: deduction for overtime meal

Carl is a croupier. Thirty times during the year Carl works overtime after completing his normal shift. He receives an overtime meal break and overtime meal allowance of $20 under the award each time this occurs.

Carl generally buys and eats a meal costing $15 during overtime. This is less than the reasonable amount for overtime meal expenses. Carl's income statement shows the overtime meal allowances as a separate allowance totalling $600. That is, 30 overtime shifts × $20.

In his tax return, Carl includes the allowance as income and claims a deduction. He works out his deduction as:

$15 × 30 overtime shifts = $450.

That is the actual amount he spent on overtime meals multiplied by the number of overtime shifts.

As the amount Carl spent on his meals is less than the reasonable amount, Carl doesn't have to keep receipts. However, if asked, Carl will have to show that he spent the $450 on overtime meals and how he worked out his claim.

End of example

For more information, see TD 2023/3 Income tax: what are the reasonable travel and overtime meal allowance expense amounts for the 2023–24 income year?

For more gaming attendant expenses, see: