A business trip is temporary travel because of work duties. Employers may reimburse business trip expenses free of tax.
What are business trips?
Business trips are temporary, and made to a special place on account of work tasks. Such a special place of work is one where an employee works on a temporary basis only.
Illustration: Bertha's permanent work place is in Seinäjoki. Her employer has received a two-month commission from a company in Vaasa. During these two months, Bertha works in Vaasa at the premises of the client company. Bertha’s employer and her main place of work do not change. Bertha’s workplace in Vaasa is considered a special place of work.
Maximum duration of temporary work at a single location is 3 years.
More precise definition of business trips and the time limits for temporary work (in Finnish and Swedish only).
The following are not considered business trips:
- trips between the home and a primary place of work (i.e. commuting)
- weekend trips between the home and a special place of work during an assignment
- commuting between a secondary place of work and a place of accommodation.
If your employer has paid business trip expenses
Employers may pay kilometre allowance and/or per diem allowance for business trips. Such allowances are tax-exempt if they are based either on actual expenses or on the Official Decision of the Tax Administration on Allowances for Travel Expenses.
If your employer has paid the expenses for your business trip, you are no longer entitled to deduct the same travel costs as expenses for the production of income.
If your employer has not paid business trip expenses
If your employer has not covered your travel expenses, you can deduct the costs as expenses for the production of income in your tax return.
File travel expenses according to the actual costs. There is no excess for the deduction, but only the part of the expenses that exceeds the standard amount for deduction for the production of income (€750) is deducted in your taxation.
If you have used public transportation for your business trip, travel expenses are deductible at actual cost. The deduction for a business trip you did by driving your own car is €0.24 per kilometre. If you have made trips by driving a car that your employer has given you as a limited company car benefit, and for which you pay at least the fuel costs, the deduction in 2018 is €0.10 per kilometre (€0.10 in 2017).
File these trips (unless your employer has covered them) under
- Expenses for the production of income.
If your employer has provided you with a car as an unlimited fringe benefit and you use the company car for a business trip, you are not entitled to deduct any expenses because the travel does not cost you anything.