Claiming for Travel Expenses When You're Self Employed

What expenses can you claim back from HMRC when you are self-employed? Find out the most tax-efficient way to claim back your travel expenses.

Arjun Kumar
Arjun Kumar
Jul 18, 2023

Claiming for Travel Expenses When You're Self Employed

If you’re self-employed, you may be able to claim back the travel costs that help you to carry out your job. This includes travel associated with business trips and the costs of running a vehicle. Claiming back on tax-allowable expenses such as travel is a great way to reduce your tax bill.

Vehicle costs can include:

  • Petrol
  • Insurance
  • Repairs
  • Car tax
  • Service and MOT

Claiming reimbursement for travel can include the following scenarios:

  • Travelling to meet a client for work
  • Travelling to customers or sites
  • Collecting equipment necessary to carry out your job
  • Going to a conference or business meeting
  • Travelling from your office to another work location

What’s the HMRC mileage rate?

The approved mileage allowance payment (AMAP) rates mileage rates are as follows:


  • 45p for the first 10,000 miles for business-purposes
  • 25p for each business mile after the threshold of 10,000 miles

Motorcycles and bicycles:

  • 24p per business mile for motorcycles
  • 20p per business mile for cycles

What expenses aren’t included?

You can’t claim back on any trips that aren’t work related. This includes commuting from home to work and back and any personal trip.

What if I use my vehicle for business and pleasure?

If you also use your vehicle privately, you will need to apportion the costs between work and leisure uses to find out a percentage of total mileage that you believe was used for business purposes.

For example, if you use a vehicle half of the time for work and half of the time for private trips such as school runs and visiting family, you’ll only be able to claim for 50% of the total mileage. This is why it’s important to keep a travel log.

Fixed mileage vs vehicle costs:

When completing your tax return, you can choose to claim for a fixed mileage rate or total vehicle costs for the tax year in question. Recording your mileage is generally the easier option as you won’t need receipts, just a travel log. If you go by total vehicle costs, this usually takes longer to record and is generally used by taxi drivers and people who cover a lot more miles.

Stay organised!

We recommend keeping a travel log for the entire year so that when you have to fill out your tax return, you can look back at your mileage to get accurate figures.

We hope this guide has told you everything you need to know about claiming for driving expenses when you’re self-employed. If you need further assistance, don’t hesitate to contact our friendly team.

Remember, if you need to file a self-asssessment tax return, Taxd asks you about any possible relevant expense to your business so you can rest easy knowing we make your tax return as efficient as possible. Try us out for free today!

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