VA Mileage Reimbursement

Traveling to medical appointments, tests, and procedures can get expensive for veterans and their caregivers. The costs of gas, wear and tear on your vehicle, parking fees, and other transportation expenses add up quickly. The VA travel pay reimbursement program provides a vital source of financial assistance to help veterans and qualifying non-veterans cover these travel costs and other qualifying out-of-pocket expenses related to reaching VA health care services. 

Key Takeaways
  • Eligible veterans can receive mileage, parking, and tolls reimbursement at 41.5 cents per mile.
  • Covered expenses include public transport, rideshares, and lodging for required overnight stays.
  • Eligibility criteria include VA disability rating, receiving a VA pension, or meeting income requirements.
  • There’s a deductible for reimbursements, waivable under certain conditions.

If you are a veteran who needs to travel for medical care, you may be eligible for reimbursement of your travel costs. The VA travel pay reimbursement program offers reimbursement for mileage, transportation, lodging, and other travel costs related to medical appointments. For 2023 and 2024, the VA mileage reimbursement rate is 41.5 cents per mile driven in a personal vehicle. Other covered costs include parking, tolls, rideshares, public transit, airfare, and hotel stays when required. 

Learn more about VA mileage reimbursement eligibility guidelines, which expenses are covered, reimbursement rates, and how to file a claim.

What Is VA Travel Reimbursement?

The VA travel pay reimbursement program provides reimbursement to defray travel costs for veterans and qualified non-veterans traveling for medical appointments. This vital program covers expenses like the following:

This program covers out-of-pocket costs for transportation, accommodations, or meals related to medical care at VA facilities. You can also seek reimbursement for travel related to non-emergency care at non-VA facilities if you receive VA approval in advance.  

VA Mileage Reimbursement Rate

Mileage reimbursement is available for distances driven in a personal car. The VA updates mileage rates annually to align with the standard mileage rate published by the Internal Revenue Service. This number estimates the cost to operate a vehicle per mile driven based on factors like fuel prices, maintenance, repairs, and more. 

In 2024, the VA mileage reimbursement rate is 41.5 cents per mile driven, the same rate as in 2023. 

In addition to the per-mile rate, you must meet a deductible before receiving reimbursement payments. The current deductible is $3 one-way or $6 round-trip for each appointment you attend, up to $18 monthly. After you have met the $18 monthly deductible, the VA will cover the rest of the cost of your approved travel for the remainder of the month. 

If you are eligible for VA travel pay reimbursement, the VA waives the deductible if you also meet any of the following criteria: 

If the VA determines you qualify for a waiver, it will automatically waive your deductible. You can also request a waiver in person or in writing.

A veteran with a 100 percent disability rating can receive special monthly compensation through Aid and Attendance and Housebound Allowance. These benefits do not count as a VA pension for determining a waiver. 

Am I Eligible for VA Travel Reimbursement?

Eligibility for VA travel reimbursement depends on your status as either:

Veteran Eligibility

Veterans are typically eligible if they travel to a VA or VA-approved health care facility in their area for care and meet at least one of the following criteria:

Non-Veteran Eligibility

The VA may reimburse certain non-veterans for transportation and related lodging and meals. Caregivers and others can also qualify in some instances if they are one of the following:

What Is Covered by VA Mileage Reimbursements?

The VA travel pay reimbursement program helps pay for reasonable costs related to reaching medical appointments at VA facilities. With proper documentation, you can get reimbursement for the following:

Claims can include a combination of these expenses. For example, you could get reimbursed for mileage to the airport plus airfare and hotel costs at your medical destination.

The key is that all included costs must directly relate to travel for VA-authorized health care purposes. The VA does not cover things like rental cars, entertainment, alcohol, and extra hotel nights that are not clinically required.  

Qualifying mileage reimbursement covers travel to and from VA health care facilities for the following:

With proper documentation, the VA may also cover travel to non-VA medical facilities in certain situations, such as travel for emergencies to the closest appropriate medical facility.

How To Apply for VA Mileage Reimbursement

You can submit claims for reimbursement online through eBenefits or by mail using VA Form 10-3542. Filing online is typically faster. Here are overviews of each process:

Online Application Steps

  1. Go to eBenefits and log into your account.
  2. Select “Apply for Benefits” and choose “Apply for Travel Reimbursement.”
  3. Enter details on authorized travel, such as dates, purposes, and locations. 
  4. List odometer readings for mileage claims.
  5. Input any other costs, such as airfare, parking, or lodging.
  6. Upload digital receipts and documents. 
  7. Carefully review and then submit your claim.

Filing by Mail Steps

  1. Obtain VA Form 10-3542 from your VA facility or online.
  2. Fill in your personal information and trip details. 
  3. Attach paper copies of receipts and supporting documents.
  4. Make a copy of the entire package for your records. 
  5. Mail the original materials to your VA regional office.

After submission, the VA will review your claim and supporting documents. You will receive status updates and a decision by mail or online through eBenefits. Approved payments are deposited or mailed.

If you have questions about the VA travel pay reimbursement program, contact Veterans Guide. We can also help you appeal a VA disability claim or obtain a higher VA rating for your disability.

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