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Automobile Expenses
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Re: Moonlighting travel

Brian, the rule is that if you travel outside of your metropolitan area, and would not be able to safely drive home after your shift without first sleeping near where you work, then the costs associated with staying overnight, including the daily per-diem rates (available at www.gsa.gov) would be allowable.

Here is how the IRS explains when travel counts:

You are traveling away from home if:

Your duties require you to be away from the general area of your tax home (defined later) substantially longer than an ordinary day's work, and

You need to sleep or rest to meet the demands of your work while away from home.

This rest requirement is not satisfied by merely napping in your car. You do not have to be away from your tax home for a whole day or from dusk to dawn as long as your relief from duty is long enough to get necessary sleep or rest.

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