Official/Personal Use of Rental Vehicles

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» Posted by on Jul 8, 2012 in Rental Cars | 0 comments

When a vehicle is rented for official travel, only the expenses incurred for official use of the vehicle may be reimbursed.  Use of the vehicle to travel from the hotel, to and from the temporary duty point, and to and from restaurants is considered official use.

If the traveler wants to include personal use of a rented vehicle, the cost of that use may not be claimed.

Some travelers arrive at the temporary duty point early, and remain there after duty is completed, and wish to use a rental vehicle for that additional personal time.  The traveler must inform the rental agency that a portion of the time for which the vehicle is rented is for personal travel, not official business.

If the traveler takes a trip away from the temporary duty point, such as on a weekend or other non-workday or at any other off duty time for personal reasons, that use is not official and the expenses incurred may not be claimed.  The traveler must discuss such personal use of the vehicle with the renting agency, as the necessity for insurance and the rental rates that will be charged may be affected.

The government does not reimburse insurance except when vehicles are rented in foreign countries.  However, if damage occurs while the traveler is acting within the scope of his or her duties, the government will pay the damages.  Personal use of a rental vehicle is not within the scope of the traveler’s duties.

There has been some confusion as to whether you can rent a car and use it for pleasure on the weekend during official travel and be reimbursed.  Currently, the regulations do not authorize such use.

By: Robyn Rice

“The contents of this message are mine personally and do not reflect any position of the Government or my agency.”

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