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Deducting Expenses on a Family/Work Vacation


Earning a little money by working during your vacation may seem easy enough, but deducting business expenses on these working vacations can be tricky.

Earning a little money by working during your vacation may seem easy enough, but deducting business expenses on these working vacations can be tricky, according to H&R Block. Tax experts have set the record straight on what you can do on these trips.

There are some instances where you can deduct certain expenses while on your working vacation, but there are other circumstances where nothing can be deducted. And if you don’t want a headache, getting them right the first time is best.

If you and your boss have worked out an agreement where you can work on vacation in lieu of taking time off then you likely can’t deduct anything. If your hotel charges fees for accessing the internet, which you need to do your work, then those expenses can be deducted.

And if your employer won’t reimburse you for those expenses, you might not have much luck deducting them on your tax return.

Given the fact that employee business expenses are subject to the 2% of AGI limitation, it is doubtful that you would have enough expenses to claim this deduction,” according to H&R Block.

Now, if you’re employer has sent you on a business trip and you decide to bring along your family, the situation is a little different. Your employer will reimburse you for any out-of-pocket expenses. But that applies to you, the employee, and only you.

You should have your receipts that relate to the business trip separate from your family’s receipts. This includes airfare and meals. If you can’t get a separate receipt

— say, you’ve gone out to dinner — then document which part of the receipt relates to you and the business expense.

As you might imagine, you can’t expect to visit Disney World while on a trip to Orlando and expect your employer to reimburse your for the cost of your admission and parking.

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Victor J. Dzau, MD, gives expert advice
Victor J. Dzau, MD, gives expert advice