22 June 2009

Another expenses dilemma


I confess that, before the days of airport security restrictions on liquids in hand baggage, I would normally pack a hip flask of whisky to take with me on short trips into Europe - only, you understand, because I often find it difficult sleeping in foreign hotel beds without the aid of a night cap.

Now that my hip flask is banned, I have to resort to buying a night cap from the hotel bar.

So far on this two-day stay in Germany,  30 Euros has bought me what would have cost me less than 10 Euros had I been able to bring the said liquid with me.

In former times, I would never have dreamt of charging the client for my night cap. But, now that its costing me at least 20 Euros more than it used to do, I'm beginning to wonder whether I should add it to my invoice?

Or should I just charge it to the hotel account in the hopes that the client will pick up the bill for whatever I consume while I'm here?

If I do neither, would I be allowed to set the extra 20 Euros against tax, on the grounds that no sleep would render me incapable of delivering a decent day's service to the client?

These are the kinds of momentous and troublesome problems I find myself having to grapple with since reading about some of the things that MPs seem to regard as perfectly legitimate expenses.

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