Work-related Car Expenses

Work-related travel

You can claim a deduction for the cost of using your car for work-related travel if:

  • you travel directly between two separate workplaces because you have two different employers, for example, you have a second job
  • you travel for work-related purposes from your normal workplace to an alternative workplace and back to your normal workplace or directly home, or
  • you travel between two workplaces or between a workplace and a place of business, for example, between two of your employer’s stores.

You cannot claim a deduction for the cost of travelling to another workplace for a social function.

Travel between home and work

You can claim a deduction for the cost of using your car to travel between home and work if:

  • you have to carry bulky tools or equipment that you use for work and there is no secure area for storing your tools or equipment at work
  • your home is a base of employment – you start your work at home and travel to a workplace to continue the work,
  • you travel from your home to an alternative workplace for work activities and then to your normal workplace or directly home, or
  • you had shifting places of employment – you regularly worked at more than one site each day before returning home.

You cannot claim a deduction for the cost of using your car to travel between your home and work if:

  • you did minor tasks, for example, picking up the mail on the way to work or home
  • you had to travel between your home and your workplace more than once a day
  • you were on call, for example, you were on standby duty and your employer contacted you at home to come into work
  • there was no public transport near where you worked
  • you worked outside normal business hours, for example, shift work or overtime
  • your home was a place of business and you travelled directly to a place of employment.

Home-based businesses

If you are carrying on a home-based business, you can claim the cost of trips between your home and other places if the travel is for business purposes. For example, you could claim the cost of travel to:

  • a client’s premises if you are working there or delivering some documents,
  • purchase equipment or supplies,
  • do your banking,
  • the post office to mail out invoices, or
  • see your tax adviser about a matter related to your business.

Work-related Travel expenses

  • You can claim the work-related cost of using vehicles other than cars (i.e. Utility trucks, panel vans, large passenger-carrying vehicles and motorcycles) as well as parking fees and tolls.
  • You can also claim work-related costs associated with taxis or short-term car hire.
  • You cannot claim costs met by your employer or costs that are reimbursed
  • You can claim the costs you actually incurred on these vehicles (eg. fuel, repairs, insurance, etc). However, you cannot use one of the four methods applicable to claiming car expenses (i.e. cents per kilometre method, “log book method”, 12% of cost method, or one-third of operating costs method).