So you’ve just returned from a whirlwind trip full of meetings, dinners, and taxi cabs. You probably have a bunch of receipts from your trip, and you know you’re going to have to file your expenses soon. This can be a daunting task, but the good news is, there’s ways to make this easier. Here are five tips for filing expenses more easily:
- Maintain Order – try to keep your receipts organized by day. This will help you keep track of what’s what, and if you used a corporate card, is likely the order in which your purchases will be listed on your statement.
- Make notes – on the back of your receipts, write down any pertinent information you may need – what was the business purpose, who was with you, etc. This can be especially helpful if you have to wait for your bank statement to come in before you’re able to file your expenses.
- Map it out – if you’re able to expense mileage in your personal car for your trip, but forgot to snap a photo of your odometer before you left, you can use Google Maps to easily measure the distance driven between places. Our Remember This Place feature can help you with this, too.
- Make a backup – most receipts are printed on thermal paper, which can fade and become unreadable. Snapping a photo when you receive the receipt will give you a fully-legible backup. If your receipt is already faded, try holding it at arms length and using a hair dryer against the back of the receipt. The heat from the hair dryer can restore the ink enough to read the details again. Just be careful – too much heat and you’ll ruin the whole receipt!
- Make a folder – some corporate email systems will automatically archive or delete your email after a period of time. If you book your trips far enough in advance, you might lose your confirmation email! Make a habit of saving your confirmations to a folder on your hard drive as soon as you receive them. Just flagging them in your inbox may not keep them safe.