Travel Feed

The IRS is OK with celebrating the closing of a business deal on a corporate jet, but not so accepting when the aircraft is used for personal jaunts. (Unsplash+ in collaboration with Getty Images) If Elon Musk and Taylor Swift were unhappy with the attention their jet flights were getting from a private citizen, a federal agency's plans could cause them even more turbulence. The Internal Revenue Service today announced that it is initiating dozens of audits on business aircraft that were used for personal travel. The audits will focus on aircraft usage by large corporations, large partnerships, and high-income... Read more →


There's so much to see in Florence, but visitors will have to stay in hotels. This year, the popular Italian destination ended short-term residential rentals. (Photo via Wikipedia Commons) U.S. property owners are well aware that when their homes are regularly used as short-term rentals, taxes are involved. Now that financial factor is gaining more traction abroad. The short-term rental platform Airbnb agreed last week to pay 576 million euros ($628 million as of today's conversion rate) to settle a years-long dispute with Italy over unpaid rental taxes. That's less than the around 779 million euros ($849 million) in taxes... Read more →


Photo by Xingchen Yan on Unsplash If your work involves driving, the Internal Revenue Service has some good news for your 2024 business trips. Today, the tax agency announced that on Jan. 1, 2024, the standard optional mileage rate you can use to claim those eligible miles will go to 67 cents per mile. That's a 1.5 cent increase over the 2023 mileage rate. However, the other two mileage rates that the IRS evaluates and adjusts each year are going down. Travel for medical and, in the case of qualified active-duty members of the Armed Forces, moving purposes will be... Read more →


If you stopped at a Georgia gas station today to top off your tank, you might have encountered a line. Peach State motorists will see fuel prices increase tomorrow, Nov. 30, as the governor's emergency suspension of the state fuel excise taxes expires. So you couldn't blame them for trying to get one last bargain at the pump. Gov. Brian Kemp's decree, first issued in September and then extended in October through most of this month, saved drivers of gasoline-powered vehicles 31.2 cents per gallon. Drivers of auto that use diesel saved 35 cents per gallon. In addition to the... Read more →


Tax mistakes, unintentional or otherwise, mean penalties when discovered by the IRS. And the amounts could add up. (Photo by Polina Tankilevitch) The United States' tax system depends on voluntary compliance by taxpayers. But Uncle Sam is no fool. He and his tax collectors are believers of the adage "trust, but verify." The Internal Revenue Service also follows up on that verification with penalties when it finds taxpayers — and the professionals we pay to take care of our taxes — aren't fulfilling our tax responsibilities on our own. The most severe punishments come via criminal tax prosecutions. The IRS... Read more →


One of the advantages of traveling by car is you can stop and enjoy the scenery. Just be sure to budget enough to cover your fuel costs, which could be higher due to state gasoline taxes. (Photo by Unsplash+ in collaboration with Getty Images) The hubby and I are Thanksgiving outliers. Our holiday spread is good ol' Texas smoked brisket and sausage and all the sides instead of turkey and all those sides. We do, however, add a pumpkin pie to the banana pudding dessert menu. We also don't go anywhere on this holiday. One of the great homebody benefits... Read more →


Photo by Kyle Glenn on Unsplash This Thanksgiving week is a big travel week for millions of Americans. Most people are heading to friends' and/or relatives' where they'll share a Turkey Day spread. Others are using the time for other, non-holiday recreational pursuits. By this time next week, they'll be back home. In most cases, they'll return to homes are in the United States. However, thousands of U.S. citizens have relocated internationally. Despite the location distances, those Americans abroad share something with domestic residents other than celebrating a traditional U.S. holiday. They still owe U.S. taxes on their income, regardless... Read more →


A field of tulips in Keukenhof, Lisse, Netherlands. (Photo: Unsplash+ in collaboration with Zdeněk Macháček) Tax season, at least the filing part for most of us, ended this week with the arrival on Oct. 16 of the extension deadline. That means that many of us in the tax world are thinking of taking a bit of a break. One place to consider is Amsterdam. The Netherlands capital has always been a popular tourist destination. Yes, I'm starting with the city's more-lax laws in connection with mood altering substances and, shall we say, personal interactions. For the less daring tourist, the... Read more →


Photo by Christine Roy on Unsplash If you're planning to squeeze in an end-of-summer vacation, budget a bit more for added taxes. The tax costs are being felt primarily by international travelers. U.S. travelers, no longer so concerned about COVID-19, have embraced delayed European trips. Residents of the destinations are, for the most part, happy for the added income. However, in particularly popular disembarkation sites, the sightseers are contributing to local infrastructure stress. Those visitors, say locals, should contribute to the area's upkeep and repairs. So tourist taxes have been instituted or increased this year in visitor-favored destinations such as... Read more →


International air carriers on tarmac photo by Marek Ślusarczyk via Wikipedia Got summer plans? Or maybe they're just wishes. Eighty-five percent of those who participated in a recent survey by the digital financial services company Ally said they wanted to travel, but financial concerns are putting the brakes on their trips. And if your dream excursion is beyond U.S. borders, another fiscal issue could keep you grounded. The U.S. Department of State can pull your passport or prevent its issuance or renewal if you have a substantial unpaid federal tax bill. Tax amounts that will curb travel: So what exactly... Read more →


Photo by Durmuş Kavcıoğlu on Unsplash Some folks are already en route to their long Memorial Day weekend destination. Millions will be flying, with AAA projecting that this holiday's nearly 3.4 million air travelers will surpass pre-pandemic numbers. But the number of holiday travelers hitting U.S. roads will dwarf all other modes of Memorial Day travel. AAA expects more than 37 million will drive 50 miles or more starting today, Thursday, May 25, through Monday, May 29. Gas prices are lower this holiday compared to last year, notes AAA, when the national average was more than $4 a gallon. When... Read more →


Photo by Emanuel-Kluge via Flickr When U.S. residents make international moves for work, there's one part of the country that goes with them. They remain U.S. taxpayers, filing federal tax returns on the on their overseas earnings. Uncle Sam, however, does provide some tax breaks to his citizens living and working abroad. Their filing deadline is June 15. Thanks to tax treaties, globally peripatetic taxpayers also get certain foreign earned income exclusions and/or foreign income tax credits. These exclusion amounts also are affected by the cost of living, as noted in Part 8 of the ol' blog's 2023 annual inflation... Read more →


The United States' tax system depends on voluntary compliance by taxpayers. But Uncle Sam is no fool. He and his tax collectors are believers of the adage "trust, but verify." The Internal Revenue Service also follows up on that verification with penalties when it finds taxpayers — and the professionals we pay to take care of our taxes — aren't fulfilling our tax responsibilities on our own. The most severe punishments come via criminal tax prosecutions. The IRS also employs civil actions to get due taxes. And many of us are familiar with the various fines and fees that are... Read more →


Fornillo Beach in Positano along Italy's Amalfi Coast. (Photo by Mihael Grmek via Wikipedia Commons) The hubby and I just finished watching the second season of Stanley Tucci's culinary trek across Italy. So, at least for a few more weeks, we're thinking (OK, dreaming) about moving to that boot-shaped Mediterranean peninsula. If we did, which we won't, we wouldn't renounce our U.S. citizenship. That comes with too steep a tax price. But officially remaining American nationals also carries a tax cost. Most Americans who move abroad still owe U.S. taxes on their income, regardless of where it's earned. That's because... Read more →


Inflation is still a concern, for consumers and politicians, but it is easing a bit (at least for some consumers). One reason for the change is falling gas prices. GasBuddy reported on Sept. 12 that for the thirteenth consecutive week, the nation’s average per-gallon gas price dropped. It went to $3.67 per gallon, down 7.6 cents from a week ago. AAA's daily tracker shows a Sept. 15 national per gallon average of $3.698. But those are averages. Your pump prices may vary. Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, noted in the latest analysis that there are "drastically... Read more →


Rail travel could save you some European Union automotive fuel taxes, maybe enough for a nice meal in the train's dining car a la the one Willem Dafoe's character enjoyed (or not, judging by his expression) in the 2017 film version of Murder on the Orient Express. (Photo courtesy 20th Century Fox) When I think of European travel, I immediately envision a train. OK, maybe I've watched Murder on the Orient Express (multiple versions) or Before Sunrise or A Little Romance or various Wes Anderson movies too many times. Still, for an American, particularly one who's lived most her life... Read more →


Online hospitality services have only grown in popularity since the first Airbnb rental in 2008. The private property rental service now has dozens of competitors worldwide. In the United States, state and local tax officials quickly discovered the revenue they were losing when owners let their homes or rooms. Most of the major clearinghouses for private rentals have worked out agreements to collect and remit occupancy taxes, similar to Airbnb deals, in the United States and globally. Of course, when taxes and real estate are involved, there always are bugs to resolve. In Dallas, for example, the city council is... Read more →


Shutterstock The hubby and I are spending the Independence Day holiday like we usually do. We're staying home. Even in our younger days, we didn't travel on holidays. We also lived in places where fireworks, the big draw on the Fourth of July, were easily accessible or visible from our homes. Of course, there was that year in Washington, D.C., where our car almost got towed, but that just added excitement to the festivities on the National Mall. Almost 48 million people, however, disagree with the way the hubby and I celebrate July 4th, according to AAA. That's how many... Read more →


Gasoline prices at a suburban Austin, Texas, gas station just before the Memorial Day weekend. (Photo by Kay Bell) Shortly before the Memorial Day holiday, gasoline prices surpassed $4 per gallon in every U.S. state for the first time. Transportation experts predict gas soon will exceed $5 per gallon nationally. Higher fuel prices didn't stop people from hitting the road during the Memorial Day break. But that was a special travel event. It was a three-day holiday after years of COVID pandemic suppressed transportation. Just a week later, people's lives are back to what passes for normal. More offices are... Read more →


This coming Memorial Day long weekend is the first in more than two years that millions of Americans are treating as more-or-less normal. (Remember that?) And people's pent-up travel wishes are pushing aside COVID-19 pandemic worries in a big way. AAA Memorial Day 2022 forecast AAA predicts 39.2 million people will travel 50 miles or more from home this Memorial Day three-day holiday. This is an increase of 8.3 percent over 2021, and brings travel volumes almost in line with those in 2017. But another year also comes to mind. Back in 2012, gasoline was $3.64 per gallon. When adjusted... Read more →