Get on your bike!

Do you use a bike at work to go and visit customers, suppliers or your Accountant?

A little know fact is that you can claim business mileage for using your bike, as well as a motorbike or a car.

What are mileage allowance payments?

Mileage allowance payments (MAPs) are amounts that you pay an employee to compensate them for the cost of using their own vehicle, i.e. car, van, motorcycle or bicycle, for business travel.

What does the exemption cover?

The exemption only applies to approved mileage allowance payments (AMAPs). Mileage allowance payments are approved if the total amount of all such payments made to the employee for the kind of vehicle in question does not exceed the approved amount for such payments applicable to that kind of vehicle. Amounts paid in excess of the approved amount are taxable and must be declared on the P11D.

What is the approved amount?

The approved amount that will make a MAP into an AMAP is worked out by using the simple formula:

M x R.

Where:

  • M is the number of miles of business travel by the employee (other than as a passenger)
  • using that kind of vehicle in question; and

  • R is the rate applicable to that kind of vehicle.
  • Separate rates are set for cars and vans, motorcycles and bicycles. The rates applying since the introduction of the mileage allowance scheme from 6 April 2002 are as set out in the table below:


  • Type of Vehicle Exempt rate per mile - taxExempt rate per mile - NI
    Car or Van 45p per mile for first 10,000 miles,
    25p per mile thereafter

    45 p per mile
    Motorcycle24 p24 p
    Bicycle 20 p 20 p


    Different rates apply for cars and vans for the first 10,000 miles travelled in the tax year and subsequent miles once the first 10,000 mile threshold has been reached. The 10,000 mile limit applies to the total number of business miles travelled by the employee in relation to the employment. There is no change in the rates for motorbikes or bicycles if you exceed 10,000 miles per year.

    Example 1

    Johnny uses his own bike for business travel to see his clients. During the tax year in question he travels 2,150 business miles (and is super fit!) . He is paid in accordance with the mileage allowance rates of 20p per mile

    The approved amount is M x R

    (2,150 x 20p) = £430

    Johnny can be paid mileage payments of £430 for the tax year tax free. His employer does not need to return the sums paid on the P11D.