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Travel Allowances

Travel Allowances

When can you claim for travel?

The Income Tax Act No.58 of 1962 allows taxpayers who receive a travel allowance to claim a deduction for using their private vehicles for business purposes. It is important to note that you can not claim travel between your home and workplace as it is deemed private use.

What do I need to do to claim against my travel allowance?

The first step is to record your vehicle’s odometer reading on 1 March each year (the first day of the tax year for individuals) and again on the last day of February the following year (the last day of the tax year for individuals). The difference between the closing and opening readings will give you your total kilometres travelled for the year.

It is now compulsory to keep a logbook of all your travel in which you record your business kilometres if you want to claim a travel deduction. The logbook must contain the following minimum information relating to your business travel:

  • Date of travel
  • Kilometres travelled
  • Travel details (where to and reason for the trip)
  1. Alternatively, calculate your claim based on the actual costs. You must have kept an accurate record of all your expenses during the year, including fuel, maintenance, lease, and insurance costs.
  2. Calculate your claim based on the SARS Fixed Cost Table supplied by SARS each year. You need not have kept an accurate record of all your expenses – use the costs linked to your vehicle’s value.

At the end of the tax year, split your private and business kilometres travelled during the tax year and claim your business kilometres travelled in one of the two following ways, taking the below notes into account:


  • The claimant can not claim fuel costs if he/she has not borne the total fuel cost used in the vehicle.
  • The claimant can not claim maintenance costs if he/she has not paid the total maintenance cost (e.g. if a maintenance plan covers the vehicle’s maintenance).
  • The claimant must reduce the fixed cost claimed pro-rata if he/she did not utilise the vehicle for business for the entire year.
  • If the claimant used more than one vehicle during the year, the claimant should keep a separate logbook for each vehicle.
  • SARS uses the distance travelled during a tax year and the distance travelled for business purposes (substantiated by a logbook) to determine the allowed costs claimed against a travel allowance.