When can you claim for travel?
What do I need to do?
Firstly, record your motor vehicle’s odometer reading on 1 March, i.e. on the first day of a tax year.
Secondly, make sure that you keep a logbook throughout the year. Note that it is not necessary to record details of private travel. You may make use of the SARS eLogbook, simply download the:
- 2021-22 SARS eLogbook for the 1 March 2021 – 28 February 2022 assessment year and filing season starting 1 Jul 2022
- 2020-21 SARS eLogbook for the 1 March 2020 – 28 February 2021 assessment year and filing season starting 1 Jul 2021
- 2019-20 SARS eLogbook for the 1 March 2019 – 29 February 2020 assessment year and tax season starting 1 Jul 2020
- 2018-19 SARS eLogbook for the 1 March 2018 – 28 February 2019 assessment year and tax season starting 1 Jul 2019
- 2017-18 SARS eLogbook for the 1 March 2017 – 28 February 2018 assessment year and tax season starting 1 Jul 2018
- 2016-17 SARS eLogbook for the 1 March 2016 – 28 February 2017 assessment year and tax season starting 1 Jul 2017
- 2015-16 SARS eLogbook for the 1 March 2015 – 29 February 2016 assessment year and tax season starting 1 Jul 2016
- 2014-2015 SARS Logbook for the 1 March 2014 – 28 February 2015 assessment year and tax season starting 1 Jul 2015
Top Tip: Without a logbook you won’t be able to claim the cost of business travel against your travel allowance.
Thirdly, record your motor vehicle’s closing odometer reading on the last day of February (28/29) of the next year, i.e. on the last day of the applicable tax year.
Fourthly, calculate your total kilometres for the full year (closing kilometres less opening kilometres).
Fifthly, calculate your total business kilometres for the year (sum of all business kilometres).
What do I record in my logbook?
- The date of travel
- The kilometres travelled
- Business travel details (where you started your trip, where you went and the reason for the trip)
Top Tip: Your travel between home and your place of work cannot be claimed for business purposes, as this is regarded as private travel. A separate logbook must be kept for each motor vehicle where more than one motor vehicle has been used for business travel during the year of assessment.
How do I work out how much I can claim?
- Calculate your claim based on the cost scale table which SARS supplies (you’ll find this table in the introduction section to the travel eLogbook)
- Calculate your claim based on actual costs. To do this, you’ll have to keep an accurate record of all your expenses during the year, in addition to keeping a log book. These expenses include fuel, oil, repairs and maintenance, car licence, insurance, wear-and-tear and finance charges or lease costs.
Top Tip: you must keep your logbook for a period of at least five years from the date of the submission of your return, as you may be required to submit it to SARS to back up your claim.
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