Reply To: Food and showers.

Home Forum Ask The Experts Food and showers. Reply To: Food and showers.



I hope you won’t mind if I chime in. I’m NOT speaking for Red. All truck stop chains (Pilot/Flying J, TA/Petro, Loves, etc.) give drivers reward points (like frequent flier miles) for buying fuel. Most of them give drivers a free shower credit for every fuel purchase over 50 gallons. Each chain has rules about how long those points, shower, drink credits are valid. So most drivers seldom if ever decide to pay for a shower, they use their shower credits. When I was OTR, I always had shower credits available. I might not have time to shower or the waiting list for one of the showers might take too long for my schedule, depending on when you want to shower. Red’s video on truck stop showers

Few if any companies pay for a driver’s food while he’s on the road. Some companies will pay for a lunch or dinner on holidays away from home. However, OTR drivers, those whose job requires them to spend regulated rest breaks away from home, are entitled to deduct from their Federal income taxes a “Meals & Incidentals” (M&I) expense amount for every day they are away from home. I think the amount for 2016 was 80% of $64 per day, no receipts required. Some trucking companies pay a portion of your pay in a tax-free manner which is trying to accomplish the same thing as deducting it from your taxes. I think Red said his company does pay “per diem”. To take this deduction you fill out IRS Form-2106 on which you list the number of days away from your tax home and deduct your total “per diem” or M&I. Drivers should store their logbooks or E-logs to substantiate the total number of days away from your home.

For example:
Driver spend 300 days per year OTR
80% of $64 is $51.20
300 days X $51.20 = $15,300 you can deduct from gross income, if your employer hasn’t paid you that amount in un-taxed income, called “per diem”. $15,300 will pay for your food. If you save your receipts and they are more than that amount you can deduct that amount instead. If your company pays you per diem, and that per diem is less than $15,300 in this example, you can deduct the amount you spent that was more than per diem total.

  • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by  scott_hanson.