7. Travel

See also:

7.5 Fuel purchases and VAT

(a) VAT receipts

Where business mileage is payable it is not normally possible to reclaim any associated VAT costs unless there is a valid VAT receipt for any fuel purchased on or immediately before the date(s) of travel.

Similarly, if fuel is purchased for a hired or pooled vehicle, VAT may only be reclaimed if a full VAT receipt is provided – garages often ask and purchasers may always request that a VAT invoice or receipt be provided.

A valid VAT receipt for fuel purchases of less than £250 will have the following features.

Features of a valid VAT receipt for fuel

  • Name and address of supplier; and
  • Date of purchase; and
  • VAT number of supplier;and
  • Quantity and description of fuel supplied (e.g. unleaded petrol, DERV, etc.); and
  • Total amount charged.

For any purchases in excess of £250 seek advice on VAT treatment from the University Tax Team.

(b) VAT and mileage claims

If a valid VAT receipt for fuel is obtained for a business journey where mileage rates are claimed for private vehicle use, then VAT may be recovered by applying the following rates:

VAT recovery rates applicable per mile claimed

Petrol cars or vans including hybrids

3p per mile

Diesel cars or vans

3p per mile

LPG cars or vans

2p per mile

A rate for motorcycles is also available on application to the Tax Team.

When associated with a mileage claim a receipt must show purchase of sufficient fuel to cover the journey at a consumption rate of 30 miles to the gallon or 6.61 miles to the litre.

For more information on recoverable VAT on Mileage please go to the Tax Website

On the Expenses Claim Form calculate the VAT applicable separately by reference to the mileage claimed and the rates given.



Example of VAT calculation on mileage claim

For a claim of 54 miles in a petrol car:

  • mileage claimed = (54 x 45p) = £24.30

  • VAT applicable = (54 x 3p) = £1.62

Where the VAT cost is a fraction of a penny, it can be rounded up.


Note: On mileage claims the VAT must be calculated separately and supported by a valid receipt, otherwise too much VAT will be recovered.

(c) VAT and hired or pool vehicles

When associated with a purchase of fuel for a hired or pooled vehicle there is no minimum or maximum purchase.

If a VAT receipt is provided and the conditions met for each type of purchase then the VAT may be charged against Oracle Tax Classification Code '2 - GB SUPPLIER - STD RATE'.

Where no VAT receipt is provided, if your cost centre does not allow VAT recovery, or if you are not concerned with VAT recovery, you can use Tax Classification '1 - GB SUPPLIER - NO VAT' may be used instead.