Austria Extends Commuter Tax Break

The Austrian government has recently united on plans to extend the existing   commuter tax break, to ensure that the provision is fairer for both part-time   workers and for low-income workers in Austria.

Despite calls by the Social Democrats (SPÖ) for the distance-based commuter   tax allowance system to be replaced by a tax deduction, the coalition nevertheless   decided to maintain the current system.

According to the Austrian finance ministry, the government plans to extend   the commuter tax break to part-time workers in Austria. Part-time workers commuting   to work one day a week will be entitled to a third of the allowance. Those commuting   two days a week will be entitled to two thirds of the tax allowance. Employees   commuting at least three days a week will benefit from the whole of the allowance.

In addition to the commuter tax allowance, the government also plans to introduce   an annual deductible amount based on the home-to-work distance (a so-called    “commuter euros” system). Under the plans, commuters will receive   EUR2 (USD2.6) per kilometre travelled. Therefore, if the commuting distance is 40 kilometres,   employees will be entitled to an annual deduction of EUR80. Part-time workers   will be entitled to a certain portion of the sum.

In future, employees using a company car for both work-related and private   use will no longer benefit from the commuter tax allowance.

Finally, the commuting credit for employees who are not subject to income tax   due to their low income will be increased from EUR141 currently to EUR290.