Travel for Good, Save In Taxes

Travel expenses for charity help lower your taxes.

The IRS allows you to deduct your expenses when traveling for a charity cause. However there are a few criteria that you need to meet to be able to qualify for the deduction.

  • The charity work that you are doing has to be the primary purpose of your trip. You can’t take a “vacation” and do a little charity and say it was an out-of-pocket expense for a charity. But you are allowed to enjoy yourself on the trip however.
  • Maybe you are a doctor and performing the duties of a doctor as a part of your charitable contribution however, you cannot claim the value of the service as a deduction. Your expenses on the other hand are eligible for deduction.
  • The organization you are volunteering for also much maintain a tax-exempt status with the IRS. So make sure you ask before you claim the deduction.
  • As for what qualifies as a deduction, check out the following: transportation costs (airfare, taxis, ferries etc.), lodging and meals.

If you have any questions about what qualifies for the deduction, we’re happy to help. Everyone has a unique situation and it’s always best to get advice from a professional that understands where you are financially.

Image courtesy of matsuyuki on flickr; reproduced under Creative Commons 2.0