Sometimes, you may find yourself having to travel for work purposes. If you are not self-employed, and you work for a company or business, you may incur expenses while traveling. While it is possible to recoup your expenses by taking a tax deduction, you may find it more pertinent to seek reimbursement from your employer.
Expenses that are considered deductible are those incurred while you are outside of your main area of business for work related purposes. Such expenses include:
- Hotel or motel costs
- 50% of the amount you spend on meals and business related entertainment
- Transportation such as local shuttles and taxis once you arrive at the destination
- Amounts incurred from the actual traveling portion of the trip (back and forth to and from destination)
According to the IRS, the classification for business trip is one in which more away from the main area in which you conduct business for significant period of time. It also relates to your intention to stay absent from your tax home or a predetermined amount of time. If you are away for a period of time in which you must sleep, the trip may meet IRS standards for business travel.
Traveling from one job location to another, or meeting clients in different locations within your normal area of business will not qualify as a business travel expense deduction. However, they may qualify as transportation expenses to the IRS.
Travel expenses must be necessary and ordinary in order to be deducted. Reasonable expenses will qualify, but any that are extravagant will not be able to be deducted.