SARS Publishes New Travel Allowance Rates

South African Revenue Service

Two notices have been published in the Government Gazette outlining changes to certain rates in terms of the Income Tax Act.

The first notice refers to the fixing of the rate per kilometre for car travel allowances for business travel.

According to the South African Revenue Service, a travel allowance is any allowance paid or advance given to an employee in respect of travelling expenses for business purposes.

A cost scale is provided. It refers to the value of a vehicle, the fuel cost and the maintenance cost.

The new rates per kilometre come into effect on 1 March 2012.

It now stands at 316 cents per kilometre of business travel.

This applies when business travel does not exceed 8000 kilometres per annum.

The second notice sets down the daily subsistence allowance for meals and incidental expenses for local and international business travel.

Subsistence allowances are paid to employees over and above their normal salaries.

In terms of local travel, incidental costs will be capped at R93 per day while the costs of meals and incidental costs is pegged at R303 per day.

The notice contains a list of international destinations with the daily amount allowed for each location.

The relevant currency for each location is also provided.

For example, the allowance per day for travel to the United Kingdom is set at 124 British pounds.

Any allowance that falls under this mark will not be taxed.

The new rates also come into effect on 1 March 2012.

Both rates are adjusted on an annual basis.

Sabinet Cape Town Office