Travel Expenses: When are they wholly and exclusively for the purposes of the trade?

Revenue eBrief No. 101/19

Tax and Duty Manual Part 04-10-01 sets out guidance on the deductibility of travel expenses. 

The manual has been amended to include the contents of Part 11-00-02, which provided guidance on the apportionment of car expenses where a car is used for both business and private purposes. 

It is important to note that Revenue will not accept deductions for travel or subsistence expenses of sole traders based on the civil service rates.

There is a distinction between “travelling in the course of a business and travelling to get to the place where the business is carried on”


Tax and Duty Manual Part 04-10-01

  1. Introduction

When arriving at business profits assessable to tax under Case I (trade) or Case II (profession), a taxpayer must first look to section 81 Taxes Consolidation Act 1997, as amended, to determine what expenses may or may not be deductible. While there are a number of expenses specifically disallowed by section 81, such as rent of private accommodation, the central test of deductibility when computing assessable Case I or II profits is whether or not the expense has been “wholly and exclusively laid out or expended for the purposes of the trade or profession”