The Federal Government has taken an important step to enable more Australian businesses to reduce costs and provide a more reliable and convenient transport option for their employees, by extending the Fringe Benefits Tax exemption for ‘taxi travel’ for employees to rideshare.
Thousands of Australian companies already choose Uber for Business as their corporate transportation partner because of our global reach, proven safety record and reliability – and more are turning to the Uber platform as employees look to return to work.
With this change, even more businesses and government agencies will be able to unlock the benefits of ridesharing – from greater reliability and GPS tracking, to lower costs and the ability to redeploy that travel spend more effectively. Not only can Uber for Business enable companies to save money on employee transport, it also reduces the administration elements of reconciling receipts and coding trips.
Employees too will be able to claim transport costs from their employers, confident in the knowledge that their company won’t be liable for a fringe benefits tax as a result.
The change represents an update to legislation created that did not anticipate advancements in transport options. The FBT exemption for taxi travel was originally introduced in 1995 to ensure employers were not unduly penalised for providing safe transport for employees – for example, after hours travel or travel home for sick employees. However, at that time, ridesharing did not exist. At that time, taxis were often the only transport option available to a number of employers.
Today however, ridesharing is recognised in every state and territory across Australia and represents an established and important segment of point to point transport. Indeed, 3.8 million Australians actively use the Uber app to get from A to B, supported by more than 74,000 driver partners. These include locals, visitors and importantly, Australian businesses.
Newer offerings, like Uber Comfort, also offer experienced drivers in newer cars, making it the perfect choice for those workday trips to an important meeting – or when you just need a little more legroom on the way to the airport. With extended wait times, drivers also wait up to 10 minutes on Uber Comfort trips.
Uber has also recently partnered with Reckitt Benckiser (RB) to provide access to free health and hygiene kits, including Dettol Instant Hand Sanitiser and Disinfectant Wipes. These free kits make up part of Uber’s $50 million global commitment to help provide equipment for hygienic rides, and makes Uber the only rideshare platform in Australia to help make disinfectants and sanitisers available for every trip.
We commend the Government for making sensible, evidence-based amendments to modernise this legislation and allow Australian businesses and employees to access the benefits of ridesharing.
For more information on Uber for Business, or to create an Uber for Business account, head to uber.com/business.