Claiming Travel Expenses for Fly in/Fly out Jobs

(last updated 26/03/2014)

Related Posts:
TAX WARNING! See this post for the latest ATO views and case law relating to travel allowances and associated travel expenses - Travel Allowance Update 2014.

Construction workers often incur expenses relating to their work in remote areas. Etax returns for these workers can include occupation specific income (see our checklist of eTax and Assessable Income) and deductions (see our checklist of eTax and Allowable Deductions).

In recent years there has been an explosion in mining projects and the number of workers who fly in and fly out of job sites. Here are some tax tips for claiming tax deductions for fly in fly out occupations:

If you have a job involving a typical fly in/fly out arrangement, it is likely your employer provides you with all of the following:
  • barracks-style accommodation while you are on-site that you must vacate when you fly out
  • canteen meals while you are on-site
  • transport from a pickup point (which may be a nominated airport) to and from the site.
The ATO considers that, in these circumstances, the site is not your temporary residence, so you can claim a deduction for any contribution you make to the accommodation or meals provided.

The ATO also says you cannot claim a deduction for your costs of travelling from your home to the pickup point. However, where you also transport "bulky or heavy" tools and/or equipment we consider there would be a related claim for travel/transport.

E-tax Return

See these posts with tips, calculators and checklists to help you prepare your eTax Return (and get a better refund) with less hassle:
Web Based Tax Return App:

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Our Web Based Tax Return App will step you through all the necessary questions to increase your  tax refund and take into account all relevant tax deductions and tax offsets. Try it now. Its FREE to get started!

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