14 October, 2021

ATO Calculator 2021 - using the ATO mileage rate


The mileage calculator below is based on the 2021 cents per km rate and allows you to estimate your mileage reimbursement for the year. The calculator is useful if you want to get an estimate of your reimbursement for 2021 but it cannot be used as proof that you drove the said kilometres. If you are looking for a way to track or log your mileage you need a vehicle log book instead. One way to do this is by using the Driversnote app to log all necessary information and get your reimbursement for 2021. 

ATO mileage rate 2021

When people talk about the mileage rate or the cents per kilometre rate, they generally mean the one used for work - that is, when you use your private vehicle for work and get compensated for the expenses. As an employee, you can have your company pay you for the expenses you incur if you use your car for work. The rate and reimbursement rules are decided by your employer or company, although the ATO's standard rate is the norm.

The current cents per km rate (or mileage rate) is set at $0.72 per km driven for business. 

Using the mileage calculator below, you can estimate your reimbursement for 2021 based on how many km you have driven for business.

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Cents per km 2020 

After July 2020, the cents per km for 2020 is $0.72 per kilometre driven for business, up to a maximum of 5000km in one financial year. Because of this, you can use the mileage calculator above to estimate your reimbursement for driving done in 2020 as well. Check out the cents per km rates for previous years here

However, if you claim any reimbursement for 2021 or any year before, you need to provide proof that you have driven the said kilometres in the form of a vehicle log book. The log book format can be anything from a PDF or Excel sheet to an ATO compliant mileage app.

Is there an official ATO app for calculation? 

Yes, the ATO provides a digital vehicle log book, but it does not have automatic trip logging or tracking. If you are looking for an automatic solution, we advise you to explore other options as there are many great apps out there that will not only serve you as a vehicle log book, but also track your mileage automatically. 

An automated vehicle log book app can help you record all you need to claim your work-related reimbursement from the ATO or your employer. 

Is there a limit to how much I can claim?

If you are using the logbook method to log your business kilometres, then there is no limitation on how much you can claim from your calculations. There is a limit if you use the simpler cents per km method (up to 5000km). For the simpler method, you only need to log the total kilometres driven plus the percentage of kilometres driven for business purposes.

If you drive for more than 5000km per year, we recommend you use the logbook method instead.

To use the logbook method, you need to record:

  • The start and end dates of all your logging for the year 
  • Odometer readings at the beginning and end of the start and end
  • The total kilometres driven 
  • The total percentage of kilometres driven for business purposes

For each trip:

  • Start time of the trip
  • Finish time of the trip
  • The total distance travelled
  • Reason for the journey (personal or business)

Expenses like fuel, maintenance, and other operating costs can be deducted using the same percentage as above - for example, if your work use percentage is 50%, your operating costs can be deducted at the same 50% rate. Save all receipts related to those costs since they will be needed to support your claims to the ATO or your employer!

Calculating your reimbursement 

While using the mileage calculator to get an overview of your reimbursement is fairly straightforward, keeping an ATO mileage log can be a bit overwhelming. 

That is why we recommend using an ATO compliant mileage app as your logbook. The app can help you track your kilometres with ease, making sure you never forget to log a trip again. The app makes sure that your reports are ATO compliant and include all the necessary information for your reimbursement. You can generate PDF reports and send them over to your boss or accountant, saving a lot of time compared to other vehicle log book methods out there.

We hope you have found the mileage calculator useful for estimating your reimbursement. Let us know if you have any questions!