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14 Min. Read

Medical Mileage Rate 2024: Everything You Need to Know

What is Medical Mileage Rate Deduction?

A mileage deduction is a type of reimbursement US citizens can claim on their federal income tax returns, based on how much driving they have done under specific conditions, like for medical or moving purposes. Taxpayers cannot claim a deduction for moving expenses unless they are members of the Armed Forces on active duty moving under orders to a permanent change of station. 

In 2024, the IRS medical mileage rate is 21 cents per mile, offering taxpayers a small break when they drive their vehicle to receive essential medical care.

Unexpected or long-term health issues can quickly drain your bank account, but using the medical deduction can help you recoup some of the expenses associated with traveling to and from doctor’s appointments, going to the hospital, parking fees, and other costs associated with travel for medical reasons, reducing the overall medical expenses you pay over the year and helping you stay financially stable, even during challenging times. 

Key Takeaways

  • The medical mileage rate in the US for 2024 is 21 cents for each mile driven.
  • Standard medical mileage rates, parking fees, tolls, and other qualified transportation amounts can be deducted when filing your taxes.
  • Medical mileage deductions must be directly related to the diagnosis, treatments, prevention, cure, or mitigation of health problems.  
  • Travel expenses paid by HSAs, FSAs, and HRAs cannot be deducted from your taxes.
  • Itemized medical deductions can be claimed by filing Schedule A (Form 1040) during tax time. 

Table of Contents

Medical Mileage Rate in 2024 

The IRS medical mileage rate for 2024 is important when determining tax deductions for your medical travel expenses, as it allows you to calculate the approximate dollar amount you can write off using simple math. These types of deductions can relieve some financial strain, especially if you’ve put wear and tear on your vehicle and spent money on fuel and tolls to get to and from medical appointments. 

Track Expenses Without Lifting A Finger

What Is the IRS Standard Mileage Rate for 2024? 

The standard mileage rate for business use and self-employed individuals is not the same as the rates offered for medical and moving purposes for Armed Forces members. The 2024 standard IRS mileage rates are as follows:

  • 67 cents per mile when driving for business use
  • 21 cents for each mile when driving for medical reasons
  • 21 cents for each mile when qualified active duty members use their vehicle to move
  • 14 cents per mile when driving in service of charitable organizations 

These rates apply to cars, hybrid electric automobiles, diesel-powered vehicles, vans, pickup trucks, or panel trucks. 

For claiming medical mileage in 2024, taxpayers may choose to use the standard deduction rate for mileage, tolls, and parking fees, or instead, deduct the cost of gas, oil, and other out-of-pocket expenses. Unlike business deductions, you may not deduct fixed and variable costs like insurance, general repair, or maintenance expenses. 

What Is the IRS Medical Mileage Rate for 2024? 

The IRS medical mileage rate for 2024 is 21 cents per mile. 1 It has changed from 22 cents per mile to 21 cents, a decrease of 1 cent from 2023. This means that when you take a trip related specifically to medical reasons, 21 cents for each mile driven may be written off from your taxes at the end of the year. You can write medical mileage off provided you have accurately tracked your mileage, and you have supporting documents. You must also keep detailed travel records to prove that the miles driven qualify under IRS rules.

Individuals seeking tax deductions for medical travel expenses benefit as the deduction can help recoup some of their vehicle wear and tear and fuel costs associated with traveling due to medical conditions beyond their control. You can also deduct parking fees, tolls, and other qualified transportation costs related to health diagnosis, treatment, prevention, cure, and mitigation as long as they haven’t been covered by health insurance. This can help relieve some of the financial stress caused by seeking medical care. Deducting some of the costs of traveling for treatment, may allow you to be better able to receive higher-quality care than if you had to receive treatment locally.

If you’re claiming medical mileage on your taxes, you must only count qualified miles for medically related travel, and it’s best to include documentation when possible. If you’re multitasking and make several stops while driving, you may only count the qualified portion of the trip that was medically related, subtracting the miles from the rest of the journey.

By adding up the accumulated miles for the year, you’ll get your qualified mileage which can be claimed on your taxes. A mileage-tracking app is handy in these cases. 

What’s Included in the Medical Mileage Rate 

The IRS website specifies that “you can include only the medical and dental expenses you paid this year, but generally not medical or dental care you will receive in a future year.” 2 These are the most commonly included expenses included in the IRS medical mileage rates. 

Mileage Expenses 

The IRS standard mileage rate is 21 cents per mile in 2024. To calculate your total annual mileage expenses, tally the number of miles driven for approved medical reasons and multiply that number by 0.21. It’s important to accurately calculate your approved mileage with documentation in case of an audit. 

Parking Fees 

Along with the mileage rate, the IRS will allow you to include certain medically-related parking fees in your deductions. This includes hospital parking, paid parking at your doctor’s office or dentist, and parking meter fees incurred while picking up prescriptions or parking at other medical facilities.

Toll Charges 

You can also include any toll charges incurred during necessary medical travel. Deductible expenses have a wide breadth but must be directly related to medical treatment. If you drive through a toll booth while traveling to another city to visit a relative and then pick up a prescription, this is not deductible, but incurring a toll on the way from your home to the hospital is. 

Transportation Services 

Along with mileage costs, you may be able to write off certain medically related transportation costs, including:

  • Bus
  • Train
  • Taxi
  • Airplane
  • Ambulance 

Certain eligible transportation expenses for a parent who must accompany a child requiring medical care are also deductible. All travel must be directly related to and essential for medical care. 

Special Circumstances 

Some additional medical travel expenses you may be able to deduct include the following:

  • Trips to another city, if the trip is primarily for and essential to receiving medical services. The rate is $50 per night per person and you may include a person traveling with the individual receiving medical care for a total of $100 per night. 
  • Any deductible costs of regular visits to see a mentally ill dependent, if these visits are recommended as part of treatment. 
  • Transportation expenses of a nurse, or another person who can give medication or treatment if the patient cannot travel alone. 

How To Calculate Medical Mileage With the IRS Medical Mileage Rate 

Calculating your mileage rate is simple. Use these steps to report your standard mileage rate deduction accurately.

Gather Your Records 

To claim medical mileage, you must accurately track the dates, times, and purpose of each medical trip throughout the year, including the total miles driven. Gathering and organizing this information will legitimize your claim to the IRS. 

Use the Current Rate 

Ensure you’re using the current mileage rate when calculating your total as it can change from year to year. For example, the 2023 rate was 22 cents per mile, but the 2024 rate is 21 cents per mile. A small calculation error such as using the wrong rate may trigger an audit.  

Multiply Miles by the Rate 

Multiply your total miles driven for medical purposes by the current 21-cent rate to get the deductible amount. To calculate, multiply the total miles by 0.21 to find the deductible dollar amount.

Add Trip Calculations Together 

To find your deduction amount, you can either add up all miles driven for each qualified medical trip first then multiply that sum by 0.21 to get the rate, or calculate each trip’s rate separately and then add the sums together for the total amount. 

For example, if you drove in this scenario:

  • Doctor’s appointment (there and back): 3.2 miles
  • Home to hospital: 1.1 miles
  • Hospital to specialist: 0.3 miles
  • Specialist to pharmacy: 1.5 miles

You can first add all travel up then multiply the amount by 21 cents: 

3.2 + 1.1 + 0.3 + 1.5 = 6.1 miles 

6.1 miles x $0.21 = $1.28 

Or you can choose to calculate each dollar amount first, then add them together:

3.2 x $0.21 = $0.67

1.1 x $0.21 = $0.23

0.3 x $0.21 = $0.06

1.5 x $0.21 = $0.32

Total = $1.28

How To Calculate Your Medical Deductions 

When you itemize your deductions, you may be able to deduct medical and dental expenses you’ve paid for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents, so long as they exceed the Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) threshold. Here’s how to calculate these deductions:

Gather Medical Expense Receipts 

A variety of expenses qualify for medical deductions, including doctor visits, prescriptions, treatments, inpatient care, substance use disorder treatment, mental health care, dental treatments, and more. Gather all documentation, receipts, bills, and paperwork related to your deductions to back up your deduction claims with the IRS.

Separate Mileage from Other Expenses 

Those who have done a lot of traveling for medical reasons may want to claim the standard medical mileage deduction instead of itemizing each driving expense. In this case, separate your mileage from other out-of-pocket medical expenses like medication costs. 

Total Your Medical Expenses 

All of your qualified medical expenses that are not compensated by insurance will be totaled on Form 1040, Schedule A. 3 This includes adding your calculated mileage deductions from each medical trip into the total sum. 

Check the Threshold 

When inputting the itemized medical and dental expenses on your Schedule A Form 1040 paperwork, you must remember that you can only deduct medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) for the year. 

Calculate the Deductible Amount 

The IRS defines AGI as “the total gross income from all sources, minus certain adjustments…” You may find your AGI automatically entered on line 11 of your Form 1040 if you use software to prepare your return. 4

Subtract 7.5% of your AGI from your total medical expenses to determine your deductible amount. For example, if your AGI is $76,000, and your total medical expenses totaled $12,750, you would find 7.5% of $76,000, then subtract that number from $12,750.

$76,000 x .075 = $5,700

$12,750 – $5,700 = $7,050

In this case, the total amount you may deduct from your taxes would be $7,050. 

Can HSAs, FSAs, or HRAs Be Used to Pay for Medical Travel? 

The IRS iterates that medical travel expenses are only tax deductible if they are not compensated by insurance or otherwise. If you pay for medical travel using money from a health savings account (HSA), a flexible spending account (FSA), or a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA), those costs cannot be deducted from your taxes. 

While you may use HSAs, FSA, and HRAs to pay for travel costs, these funds are already tax-free so do not include them on your Schedule A Form 1040.  

How To Claim Tax Deductions Using IRS Mileage Rates 

Claiming tax deductions using IRS rates is fairly straightforward as long as you’ve stayed organized throughout the year. Follow the simple steps below to claim the standard rates on your federal income tax return.

File Schedule A 

Schedule A Form 1040 is an IRS tax form that allows the itemization of deductions. 5 Using this form, you can list each deduction cost for the calendar year in detail, including part of your medical expenses and other expenses. File Schedule A to deduct medical mileage.

Recordkeeping Requirements 

Detailed records are required to be able to deduct medical travel costs. The stronger your evidence is toward the necessity of travel for medical reasons, the better. In the best-case scenario, your records will include:

  • The dates of each medical trip
  • The purpose of each trip (for example: doctor’s visit, prescription pick-up, etc.)
  • The total, accurate number of miles driven for each trip 
  • Receipts, bills, and other relevant paperwork

Mileage Log 

Keeping a mileage log in your vehicle is a good way to accurately track the number of miles driven for medical reasons. A written log is an acceptable record-keeping method, as is a mileage-tracking app. Only mark down the travel that’s directly related to accepted medical reasons.

Separate Documentation 

Keeping your medical expense receipts separate from your mileage records will help keep your records tidy. The better organized your documents are, the easier tax time will be. 

Formulas Not Required 

You won’t need to do any calculations on Form 1040 yourself. All the IRS needs from you is the total mileage claimed. This reduces the risk of error due to a miscalculation.

Effortless Mileage Tracking with FreshBooks 

Keeping track of miles driven may feel like a chore when you’re dealing with a health issue, but it’s important to take advantage of all available tax deductions to stay on top of your financial health. Using a convenient mileage-tracking app is the simplest way to separate your everyday driving from medical travel and track how much you’ve driven over the year. 

The FreshBooks mileage tracking app is automated, logging your trips efficiently so you can concentrate on getting where you’re going. In just a few clicks, you can classify your trip as personal or medical, send a mileage report to yourself, or download a full report. The app even saves your travel history in case you need it. 

Find out how FreshBooks can streamline your record-keeping process and make tax time easier. Try FreshBooks for free today.

Better Expense Tracking Better tax Reporting

FAQs About Medical Mileage Rate in 2024 

Learn more with these answers to the most frequently asked questions about medical mileage tax deductions in the US. 

Does medical mileage include picking up prescriptions?

Yes, medical mileage includes picking up prescriptions, along with other trips to doctor’s offices, medical appointments, certain dental procedures, and other health-related activities.

What is the mileage rate for medical vs. business?

The 2024 IRS mileage rate for medical travel is 21 cents while the business mileage rate is 67 cents per mile. 

Can you deduct mileage for medical trips?

Yes, you can deduct mileage for medical trips if the travel is necessary and directly related to a medical issue. The standard deduction rate is 21 cents for each mile driven. 

How much can you deduct for mileage to doctor appointments?

In 2024, you can deduct 21 cents per mile when you drive your personal vehicle to doctor’s appointments. You can also deduct expenses like parking and road tolls related to these medical trips.

What is the IRS rule for deducting medical expenses?

Medical expenses must be directly related to and necessary for diagnosing, mitigating, treating, preventing, or curing a health condition. You must have paid for them yourself, with no compensation by insurance or other entity to qualify for an IRS tax deduction.

Article Sources:

  1. IRS. “Standard mileage rates” Accessed March 26, 2024.
  2. IRS. “Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses” Accessed March 26, 2024.
  3. IRS. “Topic no. 502, Medical and dental expenses” Accessed March 26, 2024. 
  4. IRS. “Adjusted gross income” Accessed March 26, 2024.
  5. IRS. “About Schedule A (Form 1040), Itemized Deductions” Accessed March 26, 2024.

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Sandra Habiger, CPA

About the author

Sandra Habiger is a Chartered Professional Accountant with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Washington. Sandra’s areas of focus include advising real estate agents, brokers, and investors. She supports small businesses in growing to their first six figures and beyond. Alongside her accounting practice, Sandra is a Money and Life Coach for women in business.