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Lodging Tax Exemption for Government Travelers (For Distribution to Travelers)

Want to make yourself look like a model employee? Of course you do! Here’s how…

Some states and U.S. territories (e.g., Puerto Rico) exempt federal travelers from paying lodging tax. If you happen to be going to TDY to one of those locations, you have the perfect opportunity to save your organization’s money and demonstrate your awesomeness to your boss. The next time you’re slated to go TDY, first go here to view the list of states and territories that exempt federal travelers from lodging tax. If your TDY destination is on the list, you should take full advantage of their generosity. After all, travel funds are tight these days.

A few considerations regarding lodging tax exemption (don’t worry, they’re not that burdensome):

 - You must be on official travel. Translation: just because you’re a member of the federal government doesn’t qualify you for lodging tax exemption for personal travel, such as when making reservations for your upcoming family reunion.

 - You must be pay for the hotel with your Government Travel Charge Card. It doesn’t count if you use your personal card, cash, or the barter system.

 - You should call the hotel vendor and ask about their lodging tax exemption policy. Even if the state exempts federal travelers from lodging tax, not all hotels honor the exemption. If they don’t honor it, consider expressing your displeasure by staying at a rival hotel that does offer tax exemption to federal travelers.

 - You may need to fill out a lodging tax exemption form (depending on the state/territory) and present it at check-in. This shouldn’t bother you too much – you’ve filled out hundreds of forms in your career. Another one won’t hurt, and at least it’s for a good cause.

 - You should examine your hotel bill carefully. Even if you did your job right, the hotel staff may have been less diligent. If they did charge you tax, politely ask them to remove it.

If you get exempted from paying lodging tax, be sure to remove lodging tax as a non-mileage expense from your voucher. Oh – and don’t forget to remind your supervisor of your eye toward efficiency and cost savings. Something like “Hey, boss, I found a way to save some money on my upcoming TDY” should do the trick. Want more information about lodging tax exemption for federal travelers? Visit our website.


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