If you use a Google Sheets template to keep a mileage log for taxes, you’re not alone – many self-employed persons still do, even if it certainly isn’t the most efficient method.
Here’s the good news: we have a mileage log template in this article if that’s how you prefer to do things, and we also have an automatic mileage tracker app. We definitely recommend an app if you’re looking to save time, though we’ll be providing an overview for those who still find the topic of a mileage log template relevant.
What is a Mileage Log Book?
Simply put, a mileage logbook is how some people keep track of the miles they do with their vehicle for business or personal reasons. Generally speaking, there are three main situations when you need to track mileage for income tax purposes:
- You are self-employed and use your vehicle for business purposes
- You work for an employer, through which you use either a personal vehicle or a company car
- You are an employer who needs their employees to log mileage for mileage reimbursement purposes
Often when people talk about a logbook they are referring specifically to a paper-based log, but for the purposes of this web page, we’re going to use the term to refer to any kind of vehicle mileage log.
Additionally, if you are already using or want to use a mileage sheet template like the one we have, you need to make sure that it contains certain things:
- Trip purpose (business trip or personal)
- Date of the trip
- Odometer Readings at both the start and end of the relevant year (this is the minimum requirement from the IRS)
- Miles driven for each and every trip you make
- The destination of each trip you make
- Deductible amounts you could potentially receive (not mandatory, but useful)
You can also find all of these points in our mileage log sample.
Mileage Log Template – Google Sheets Versions
One of the benefits of using our free Google Sheets mileage template is that ours also functions as a mileage calculator, which is based on the IRS’s mileage rates in 2022. What are those rates? Let’s examine:
- 65.5 for each mile driven for business purposes in 2023
- 22 cents for each mile driven relating to moving or medical purposes in 2023 – note that moving deductions only apply to members of the armed forces who currently serve on active duty and meet quite specific requirements. See our mileage rate webpage for more information.
- 14 cents for each mile driven relating to work undertaken for charitable organizations
Additionally, it is also important to note that if you do choose to use our mileage tracker spreadsheet, you will first need to copy the one we have linked here and paste it into your own Google Docs, as this one is publicly available and therefore cannot be altered.
From there, you can edit it as you choose, and when you are finished you can either print the file directly or download it into one of many formats, namely PDF versions, XLXS files (Excel), or even CSV files, all of which are accepted by the IRS.
How to Use This Mileage Log Book for Google Sheets
Once you’ve taken the steps mentioned above, i.e. you have copied our public template to your own Google Docs cloud, then you can edit things as you choose. From there it really becomes a simple matter of entering your trips on an individual basis – just make sure that you are diligent enough to record your personal trips too.
Personal trips are especially important when you consider the fact that the IRS views anything less than 10 percent of your total mileage as personal to be a red flag, and you don’t want to be on the bad side of an IRS audit.
Mileage Log Template to Mileage Logging Software
Do you track your mileage manually in Google Sheets or in an Excel file, but find it way too time-consuming or not efficient enough? No need to worry as you can easily import your clients as well as 1000+ trips/month into MileageWise.
Click the picture below for the detailed, step-by-step process:
Also, if you have a mileage log on Google Timeline, but you’re not able to transform the data from there into the form of a sufficient mileage log, MileageWise is here to help you throughout the entire process.
The Benefits of a Digital Mileage Log
Using either our Google Sheets template or our Excel mileage log template file as a log for your mileage report is certainly a step up from using a cumbersome paper-based log, but above all else, we recommend that you use our mileage tracker app.
We offer tons of features, including the following:
- Three auto-tracking methods: Bluetooth, vehicle movement monitoring, and Plug’N’Go phone charging tracking
- Retrospective mileage reconstruction: perfect if you need to backtrack your mileage for a longer period and/or you are facing an audit from the IRS
- Mass distance calculation: our app calculates door-to-door distances without forcing you to constantly use GPS, maintaining both your battery and your privacy.
If you’re interested in what advantages MileageWise has that other mileage trackers don’t, check out our mileage tracker app comparison table.
We’d also like to highlight the fact that you can try out our software for free for 14 days, and you needn’t give us your credit card either. The free trial allows you to experience all the benefits our app and its accompanying web dashboard offer – that way you can make an educated decision when it comes to deciding if you want to take on a more long-term plan too.