Top Tips for Accurate Record Keeping for Tax Time: Meals, Travel, and Vehicle Expenses

It’s that time of year again: tax season. If you’re self-employed or own a small business, you know how important it is to keep accurate records of your expenses throughout the year. Proper record keeping not only helps you stay organized, but it can also save you money come tax time. In this blog post, we’ll go over some best practices for keeping track of your meals, travel, and vehicle expenses for tax purposes.

Your Expenses

  1. Meals: If you have a business meeting or take a client out to lunch, you can write off 50% of the cost as a business expense. It’s important to keep a record of the date, location, and purpose of the meal. If you’re claiming a meal expense, be sure to also have a receipt that shows the amount spent.
  2. Travel: Travel expenses, such as flights, hotels, and rental cars, can also be written off as business expenses. Be sure to keep a record of your travel itinerary, as well as receipts for any costs incurred. If you’re traveling for a business conference or trade show, you can also write off any related expenses such as registration fees or materials.
  3. Vehicle expenses: If you use your personal vehicle for business purposes, you can write off a portion of your expenses. The IRS allows you to claim either the actual expenses incurred (such as gas, maintenance, and insurance) for the portion used in business or the standard mileage rate (which is currently 65.5 cents per mile). It’s important to keep a record of your business miles driven, as well as any receipts for vehicle-related expenses.


Accurate record keeping is crucial for claiming deductions on your taxes. By keeping track of your meals, travel, and vehicle expenses throughout the year, you’ll be well-prepared come tax time and may be able to save some money on your return. Stay organized and be sure to keep all relevant documents and receipts for your records.

If you’re looking to learn more about possible tax planning opportunities schedule a call with us! We can provide guidance on what deductions you may be eligible for and help you create a tax strategy that works for your business. Don’t let the fear of tax season hold you back from maximizing your potential deductions and saving money on your return. Take control of your finances and set yourself up for success by staying on top of your record keeping and seeking guidance when needed.