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The Guild has assessed the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) and Automobile Association vehicle mileage rates for members to reasonably charge production companies. We also have the recommended minimum per diems that you can survive on. The following fact sheet is available:

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Per Diems

Welcome to the comprehensive source of per diem information for techos’, actors, directors and producers.

It is common practice for the producer to provide single-room accommodation, all meals and laundry costs when the crew member is required to work away from their town of residence.

The Guild recommends the following rates as being reasonable minimum rates for per diems for crew travelling within New Zealand. In some locations the per diems will need to be higher to reflect the actual cost the food and services available.

As of 2009

Breakfast (some hotels charge $20 to $25) $  16.50
Lunch $  22.00
Dinner $  33.00
Laundry $    8.80
DailyTotal $ 80.00

There are two methods of payment and accounting for per diems. The conventional method is where per diems are taxed and the contractor keeps all receipts and invoices for meals and incidentals. These allowable expenses are then claimed on GST and end-of-year tax returns.

The alternative “exemption” method allows for an amount of up to $60.00 per day to be paid (depending on the meals provided by the production company) without the contractor keeping receipts and invoices for meals and incidentals.

In both methods, the principle remains that per diems are gross taxable income. An invoice must be supplied to the production company by the contractor and production company must declare the payment as gross income to the IRD on the production companies monthly IR348 return.

The Technicians’ Guild has produced a Per diem Guide (after consultation with the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) and production accountants and a Per diem Q&A page to help with misunderstandings and difficult questions. Please contact the Guild if you have any questions not covered in the guide or Q&A.

NZF&VTG Per Diems Guide (PDF 116kb)
NZF&VTG Per Diem Q&A Factsheet (PDF 108kb)

The IRD determination describing the alternative "exemption" method is published on page 14 of the IRD Technical Information Bulletin, Volume 15, No 8, August 2003:
IRD TIB, Volume 15, No 8, August 2003 (PDF 270kb)

Information on the filing of IR 238 Employer Monthly Schedule using the alternative "exemption" method:
IRD Payroll News, Issue 56, September 2003 (PDF 360kb)

The IRD has a screen production industry specific section on its web site:


Recommended vehicle travel rates

The rates recommended by the Guild are the New Zealand Automobile Association rates. These rates represent the current cost of owning and operating a vehicle.

Crew should charge for vehicle usage when travelling in their own vehicles on production time, or when travelling during the 20km travel zone system as noted in The Blue Book.

These rates are inclusive of fuel and oil.
There should be no additional fees such as a fixed daily rate or fuel.
These rates are paid as taxable income.
These rates are based on an average use of 14,000km per year.
Contractors are entitled to make a profit on any service they provide.

The IRD also publishes vehicle mileage rates. However the IRD rates are primarily non-taxable employee allowances based on annual usage.

The recommended rates (2009) are:

Vehicle Size Excluding GST Including GST
upt 1500cc  47.8c per km  53.78c per km
1500 to 2000cc  57.4c per km  64.58.11c per km
2000 to 3500cc 71.5c per km  80.44c per km
Over 3500cc 90.3c per km 101.59c per km

Reproduced with the kind permission of the NZ Automobile Association.

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