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Entertainment Allowance: Meaning, Exemption, Deduction & Calculation

Updated on :  

08 min read.

Entertainment allowance means the extra expenses which salaried individuals receive as a part of their income. Entertainment allowance is the amount the company gives to employees for their expenses on drinks, hotel stay, meals, movies etc. Entertainment allowance is entirely taxable for employees working at private companies, whereas government employees receive exemptions based on a few conditions.
Find out more on this matter in the article below.

What is an entertainment allowance deduction?

Entertainment allowance deduction is the provision that allows individuals to reduce the burden of taxes on their income. Entertainment allowance is first added to an individual’s income, and then a certain amount is deducted. Section 16(ii) of the Income Tax Act puts entertainment allowance under the head ‘Salaries’ and gives a detailed account of the applicable deductions.

How is entertainment allowance computed for Government employees?

As per section 16(ii), Government employees can claim a deduction for entertainment allowance by considering the lowest from the following: 

  • 20% of an individual’s basic salary
  • Rs.5,000
  • Entertainment allowance amount received in the financial year

This deduction is not available for individuals working in private firms or any statutory or local authorities. 

How is entertainment allowance calculated?

Entertainment allowance calculation is done based on the following parameters:

  • Individuals’ salaries must be the gross amount they receive without including any benefits. Moreover, it should not include any perquisites or any other allowances.
  • Actual amount spent by an individual from the received entertainment allowance must not be considered. 

Let’s look at an example of the entertainment allowance deduction for a better understanding:

ParticularsAmount
Individual’s Salary (not including perquisites, benefits, and allowances)Rs.2,20,000
Entertainment Allowance For The Entire Financial Year Rs.22,000
  • Therefore, the amount of deductible available will be:
Rs.5,000Rs.5,000
20% of the salaryRs.44,000
Actual Amount Received By An IndividualRs.22,000
Allowed Deduction AmountRs.5,000

Is entertainment allowance a part of the salary?

Yes, entertainment allowance forms a part of your salary income. If you are a government employee, you can claim an entertainment allowance deduction depending on a few conditions. Furthermore, your employer must classify that allowance as entertainment allowance for it to be eligible for a tax deduction. 

Who is eligible for deduction of entertainment allowance u/s 16(ii)?

Only Government employees are eligible for entertainment allowance deductions under Section 16(ii). They can claim a deduction of Rs.5,000, 20% of their gross salary or the actual entertainment allowance received in a financial year, whichever is lower.

Is entertainment allowance taxable?

Entertainment allowance is taxable for both Government and private sector employees. However, government employees get tax deduction benefits provided the allowance is included within the gross salary.

What amount of entertainment allowance is exempt for non-government employees?

Entertainment allowance for non-government employees is not exempt from tax. It is fully taxable for them.

Now that you know the meaning of entertainment allowance in income tax, you may be wondering how to claim entertainment allowance deductions. Well, your entire entertainment allowance amount is included in your gross salary. Thus, you can claim it under the head ‘Salary Income’ at the time of IT return filing