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NHS Mileage rates

NHS mileage allowance

23 May 2022: Joint statement on the reimbursement of travel costs in England.

10 March 2022: The RCN is calling for an urgent and early review of the NHS mileage rates to deal with the recent dramatic increases in fuel costs. The nursing workforce travelling to deliver nursing care cannot afford to subsidise the NHS through the current spike in fuel costs. The RCN is calling on NHS employers across the UK to provide an immediate additional payment at this time.

If you drive or use public transport for work, you may be able to claim back the costs. This pages provides information on eligibility and current rates. 

The NHS mileage allowance is available to nursing staff on Agenda for Change contracts, or those with Agenda for Change mileage allowances built into their contracts. If that is you, you can claim for all work-related travel, except your commute between home and work.  If you are employed in the NHS in Wales a different arrangement exists.  Visit the Health in Wales website for the Agenda for Change mileage rates for the NHS in Wales.

Mileage reimbursement rates for work-related car travel

56p per mile for the first 3,500 miles
then 20p  for each additional mile

Other reimbursement rates

You can also claim:

  • 20p per mile for travel by bicycle
  • 28p per mile for travel by motorcycle or public transport
  • 56p per mile for travel to required training
  • 5p per mile for transporting work-related passengers
  • 3p per mile for transporting bulky work-related equipment.

How to claim

To claim for the costs of your work-related travel, follow your employer's policy. You can speak to your local human resources team for more information.

How rates are calculated

The NHS Staff Council reviews the rates twice per year, considering all motoring costs and the cost of fuel in April and November respectively. The trigger for a change in rates is a 20% increase or decrease in motoring/fuel costs over the 12-month average prices. The next review is due to take place in April 2022 and reported back in May.  

However, the RCN will be raising mileage rates through the NHS Staff Council, calling for an urgent review due to the current spike and expected continuing price increases. Even if the 12-month average price increase, used for the normal twice per year review, has not reached a tipping point for triggering a full rate change we are calling on the NHS employers across the UK to provide an immediate additional payment at this time.

Tax on mileage claims and P11D

Some employers have told staff side that they cannot pay NHS T&Cs rate mileage, because then they would have to process P11Ds for everyone, to calculate their tax on the additional income and that would cost too much but we this should not stop our members from being properly reimbursed their expenses.

HMRC set mileage, and other, expenses rates at a level that does not need to be counted as income. The current HMRC rates can be found here.

The NHS Terms and Conditions booklet, Section 17, sets mileage rates which Trusts can use to reimburse work mileage. These rates can be found here.

HMRC allow for up to 45p per mile, the NHS T&Cs suggests 56p per mile, so there is an 11p per mile difference.  This difference is viewed by HMRC as ‘income’ and this needs to be accounted for, in the same way as other income is for tax and National Insurance (NI).

If your employer uses payroll to pay your expenses, a ‘separate’ or ‘different’ process for the 11p per mile – the P11D - is not required.  Your payroll can simply calculate the extra 11p per mile as income and calculate your tax/NI on a single amount of your salary plus the mileage.

So, if your gross salary is £2,500 per month, and you also claimed 500 work miles in the month, your pay slip would show your gross salary of £2,500 and your mileage payment of £280 (500 @ .56p) but you would only pay tax/NI on your salary and £55 of the mileage payment. This would not require the P11D.

If your employer pays your expenses separately from payroll, then a P11D is required to ensure you only pay the correct amount of tax, and that your employer also pays the correct NI contributions. Whilst this is an extra process, it can be (and is) automated by many payroll systems and many NHS, and other employers, manage to process these payments to employees every month. 

If your employer is using this as a barrier to increasing mileage rates, please contact RCND for a referral to your local office for support in trying to address this.

NHS Employers website

Visit the NHS Employers website for more information on the NHS mileage allowance.

We're here for you

If you're an RCN member and need advice on your pay and conditions of employment, you can contact the RCN seven days a week, 365 days a year.