Small business owners — including freelancers and solopreneurs — have several jobs: Doing the actual work, running the company, and making sure that all systems are used to their best revenue and tax advantage. If any part of your business requires driving, a good mileage tracker app is a must. Mileage trackers help you to classify your driving destinations, help you economize, save you money on your taxes, and back you up for reimbursements to and from your employers and contractors.
Mileage trackers not only track miles, they ideally log them into a tax-friendly format that you can use to augment your return, whether you do your own taxes or hire a professional. Mileage tracking apps are valuable tax assistants, considering that the IRS will let you deduct for uncompensated miles driven for work, saving you money on your tax bill.
Some features are automatic, and using any automated services in these apps will save you time and effort as you try to gather accurate expense and time report information. Many tracking apps function like business services and are not free of charge, but for many small business folks, the time and effort saved in compiling mileage and expense data is worth the money.
Mileage tracking apps use GPS to track your car’s motion from one location to another; they often start recording distance when the wheels start moving and stop if you are in one place for a certain amount of time — something you can set in the preferences. Mileage tracking is similar to how Google Maps tracks a car trip. Don’t expect 100% accuracy, but a close ballpark is extremely helpful. It’s a good idea to simultaneously keep track of mileage yourself with your own odometer, just to make sure your apps are functioning properly. You also want to watch the level of your smartphone battery as you use the apps.
Each business needs different kinds of services from mileage trackers: Some need solid classifications, while others need to add more notes and reminders about each trip. And that’s where many of the available apps differentiate themselves. Here are some of the highly rated mileage tracking apps available for iOS and Android.
TripLog Mileage Tracker
TripLog automatically tracks miles every time you drive your car or your fleet of vehicles. TripLog is designed for both personal and business expense reporting and automatically tracks deductible mileage, saving your business time and money, and protecting you in case of a government tax audit. It also provides 100% IRS compliant reporting that you can use with all major accounting platforms. TripLog is highly customizable; you can log miles for specific times of the day or set up the tracker for business and personal rides. TripLog can keep track of all vehicle and business expenses — fuel, parking, tolls, maintenance, insurance, logging, meals — that you can cite as business deductions. It lets you capture expense receipt photos and upload them to the Cloud. You can auto-start the app’s tracker when plugged into a power source, or connected to a Bluetooth device and driving at more than 5 mph, or you can have the app auto start at a set time. The app supports businesses with mobile employees, car fleets, and truck fleets. A 30-day free trial is available.
Everlance puts the free in freelance, but also the profit. It is targeted at solopreneurs, real estate agents, photographers, self-employed people, general contractors, independent contractors, rideshare drivers, food delivery people, and employees who need to get reimbursed. Everlance promises to make tracking your mileage and generating receipts for tax deductions or reimbursement simple, easy, and free. Everlance tracks your mileage automatically using GPS — the app records your trips in the background and you can manually swipe trips to the left or to the right to signify personal or business. Under the free plan, you can track an unlimited number of trips or receipts or you can upgrade to Everlance Premium and the app will automatically track your trips and transactions using credit card and bank integration. The app calculates business mileage, trip start/end time, and reimbursement value. It saves a GPS mileage receipt for each trip which is backed up to the cloud. You can also upload your paper receipts of meals, supplies, and other expenses.
MileIQ is a free mileage tracking app that uses GPS-backed drive detection technology to automatically log and track miles, and calculate the value of your drives for taxes or reimbursements. The app helps you organize your drives for your business expenses and tax refunds and separates business miles from personal. It provides the reports needed to maximize your tax deductions and reimbursements. MileIQ automatically tracks your miles in the background so you won’t have to manually log your miles or start and stop recording and it will create a compliant mileage log for you. Mileage tracker records all trips down to fractions of a mile without consuming excessive battery power. Mileage reports provide information for the IRS and include details you need for your business expense reports. Expense reports are simple: Just export your mileage tracking data or send yourself a spreadsheet with the data you need. For a complete record of all your drives, upgrade to MileIQ Premium for $6 per month or $60 per year.
Hurdlr, a business expenses and mileage tracker targeted to small business owners, self-employed people, independent contractors, freelancers, Uber or Lyft drivers, couriers, and others offers a compendium of services to let you easily capture receipts and create expense reports. Hurdlr connects with banks, Uber, FreshBooks, Square, Stripe, and PayPal to import your income and expenses automatically for easy income tax calculations. The app’s free version features expense, income tax, and semi-automatic mileage tracking. The premium version has better automation features with a detailed business tax tracker for quarterly tax accounting. Hurdlr’s IRS mileage tracking helps 1099 filers claim maximum tax deductions. The app lets you export detailed expense reports with receipts and send them via email or to a tax specialist. Hurdlr provides real-time, year-end, and quarterly tax estimates for independent contractors. Hurdlr is specifically designed to work without draining your battery, even with heavy usage. Premium features cost $8 a month or $60 a year.
SherpaShare bills itself as the ideal app for Uber or Lyft drivers with a rideshare driver assistant that boosts earnings 30% or more — featuring automatic mileage tracking, expense tracking, and smart driver tools that help you plan the best routes. The app is for ridesharing drivers, delivery people, business travelers, and freelancers. It automatically tracks all mileage using your phone’s GPS without draining your battery, lets you classify your trips, track and categorize expenses, record trip details, back up information to the cloud, and connect with other drivers for real-time traffic conditions. SherpaShare lets you download a mileage tracking spreadsheet or printable mileage log so you can submit a professional looking tax return and expense report. The app’s advanced tracking technology is accurate and always on so you benefit from recorded total miles. A 14-day free trial is available.
The MileWiz driving log captures every mile you drive, automatically. You can categorize trips or tell the IRS compliant app how to categorize trips for you, based on your working hours or the places you visit. The app is designed for the self-employed, small companies, and employees of small companies. If you drive your personal car for company trips, you can track for reimbursement for your miles, gas, parking, and tolls. The app detects and logs drives automatically, even if MileWiz is not launched, and visualizes your drive route, distance, and value on a map. You can use a swipe gesture to categorize drives, adds places you visit often, configure working hours for auto-recording, add or merge drives, and track driving-related expenses. The app comes with predefined categories, but you can also create as many as you want and generate reports by any criteria you want — such as time period, driver, vehicle, tags, or category. Sync all your data between devices or just keep a cloud backup. MileWiz employs advanced algorithms, designed to limit the app’s GPS usage to a minimum to conserve your smartphone’s battery.
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