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You can claim meals and lodging expenses, including
showers, if all four of the following conditions are met:
work for an airline, railway, bus, or
trucking company, or for any other employer whose main
business is transporting goods, passengers, or both.
travel in vehicles that the employer
uses to transport goods or passengers
regularly have to travel away
from the municipality and the metropolitan area (if there
is one) where your employer's home terminal is located.
regularly incur meal and
lodging expenses while travelling away from the
municipality where the employer's home terminal is
located. That is, must generally be away from home
overnight to do the job.
Income Tax Act s. 8(1)(h)
If all of the above four conditions for transport
employees are not met,
it still may be possible to claim travelling expenses (meals and lodging, but not motor
vehicle expenses) incurred, if you meet all of these conditions:
You were normally required to work away from your
employer's place of business or in different places.
You were required by your contract of employment to pay
your own travelling expenses.
You did not receive a non-taxable allowance for
Meal expenses can be deducted if your employer requires you
to be away for at least 12 consecutive hours from the
municipality/metropolitan area of your employer's location where you normally
report for work.
Expenses of Railway Employees
Income Tax Act s. 8(1)(e)
The cost of meals and lodging, for which you have not been
reimbursed, and are not entitled to be reimbursed, can be claimed if you meet one
of the following two conditions:
You work away from home for a railway company, as a
telegrapher or station agent, in a relief capacity, or carrying out
maintenance and repair work for the railway company, or
You are a railway employee who
works away from the municipality/metropolitan area
where your home terminal located, and
works at such a distant location that it is
unreasonable for you to return daily to your home, where you
support a spouse, common-law partner, or dependent related to you.
meals can be claimed using the simplified
method (see CRA information on meals
and lodging expenses for employees), under which receipts are not
required, but a log of travel is required. Under this method,
the allowable amount for meals is
$17 per meal,
one meal after every 4 hours from the departure
time, to a maximum of 3 meals per day
meals are 50% deductible, except for meal costs
during eligible travel periods of long-haul truck drivers, which are
deductible (under ITA s. 67.1(1.1)), by the trucker or by an employer
who may have paid the expenses, at the following rates:
65% for 2008
70% for 2009
75% for 2010, and
80% for 2011 or later.
The meals and lodging costs will include GST/HST and any
provincial retail sales tax paid. You may be
eligible for a refund of the GST/HST included in the
costs. See Employee
and Partner GST/HST rebate on the GST/HST page.