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TR 2017/D7 Please scroll to the end and read the examples.



Air fares

Taxis or car hire




Alcohol - e.g. wine & beer



Reading materials - e.g. newspapers, magazines, books, etc.

Movies - e.g. DVDs, in-house, cinema, etc.



Most employers usually pay for only accommodation and meals for their employees but there are many other incidental expenses that are not reimbursed, these are usually a tax deduction. e.g. alcohol, snacks, toiletries, movies, etc.



TR 2017/D6 Example 5

Working at new locations every few weeks and staying away from home

Special demands travel (deductible)

Work-related accommodation (deductible)

Mike is an employee foreman specialising in road construction, particularly intersection construction. He works for a road construction firm, which has an office near Mike's home in Melbourne. Mike does not have a set desk as he is rarely in the office, only attending meetings one or two times per month.

Mike is mainly based and required 'on-site', which can be anywhere throughout Victoria. He generally works Monday to Friday, and is paid separate weekend rates if required to work on weekends.

Work equipment required for the projects is carried on trucks driven by other employees.

Projects can be between 50 to 200 kilometres away from Mike's home or the firm's office, and can last for periods ranging from one to eight weeks. Where a project is more than 100 kilometres from home, Mike is paid a daily 'travel allowance' by his employer for the number of days of the project to help cover the cost of his accommodation and meals.

Apart from being paid for weekend work and receiving the daily 'travel allowance', Mike's salary package recognises all aspects of his position, including the requirement for him to travel between Melbourne and various project sites at the start and end of each project. His employer requires Mike to respond to any work calls received while in transit between Melbourne and the project sites.

It is up to Mike to decide if he stays away from home overnight when at project locations. If he does stay away, he arranges his own accommodation and meals. Typically, where the project is more than 100 kilometres from home, Mike usually chooses to stay in short term accommodation such as motels, bed and breakfasts, or a cabin or caravan at a caravan park, depending on what is available in the area in which his 'road construction team' is working.

Mike always stays in one accommodation location for each project and commutes between that accommodation and the project site.

Mike does not travel from one project to the next or from one work site to the next. Mike will usually travel from home to a particular project site and then return home upon completion of that project.

On occasions Mike chooses to travel back to Melbourne from a project location during the week or on weekends, rather than staying away from home overnight. On these occasions, he returns to the project location in time to recommence work at the required time. He undertakes this travel at his own cost.

Mike's transport expenses for trips between Melbourne and the project locations at the start and end of each project and are deductible. Mike undertakes this travel in the performance of his work activities, which reflect special demands associated with ongoing travel between various work locations.

Mike's accommodation, meals and incidentals for the periods he spends away from Melbourne on projects are deductible because the travel is required by his work and he is not living away from home.

The cost of travel between project locations and Melbourne during the week and on weekends is not deductible. It is not undertaken in performing Mike's duties, and occurs by choice for personal reasons.

Further, Mike cannot deduct accommodation and meal expenses for periods when he has returned home, including for periods when Mike receives a travel allowance to cover the costs of working away from home and he chooses to travel home. These are private expenses (Return to paragraph 40 or 58 of this draft Ruling).



The information provided in the above documents is not intended to be, nor should it be construed as tax advice. Any specific recommendation for a client can only be done after their individual circumstances have been determined by David Douglas Accountants.

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