Did you know you can submit a VA travel reimbursement claim online and get paid for mileage and travel-related expenses for VA-approved healthcare appointments?
In 2022, the VA will pay eligible veterans for round-trip mileage to and from appointments at 41.5 cents ($0.415) per mile for approved healthcare-related travel.
The VA travel pay program also covers miscellaneous expenses, such as, tolls, parking, taxis and rideshare, plane fares, ticket costs for public transportation, including train, subway, bus, ferry, or light rail, transportation by a specially equipped vehicle, such as an ambulance or wheelchair van, and meals and lodging (if applicable).
To be eligible for a VA travel claim, you must first be traveling to an appointment at a VA healthcare facility or a VA-approved facility in your community.
- VA Travel Reimbursement: 10 Ways to Qualify for VA Travel Pay
- What Types of Travel Expenses Does the VA Cover?
- What Is the Current VA Mileage Reimbursement Rate?
- What is the VA Travel Reimbursement Monthly Deductible?
- How to Apply for a VA Travel Reimbursement Deductible Waiver
- How to File for VA Travel Reimbursement Online (2022)
- Step #1: Go to the AccessVA website and click “I am a Veteran.”
- Step #2: Sign-in to the VA Travel Claim Entry Portal
- Step #3: Go to your BTSSS VA Travel Pay profile
- Step #4: Review your VA Travel Pay profile, enter any missing information, and go to your dashboard
- Step #5: Create your VA Travel Reimbursement claim
- Step #6: Add your travel-related expenses and receipts
- Step #7: Submit your VA travel pay reimbursement claim
- About the Author
VA Travel Reimbursement: 10 Ways to Qualify for VA Travel Pay
Generally, there are 10 approved categories for VA travel pay reimbursement, and you must meet at least one of the following requirements:
- You have a VA disability rating of 30 percent or higher.
- You are traveling for treatment of a service-connected disability, even if your VA rating is less than 30 percent.
- You are in receipt of VA pension benefits.
- You have an income that’s below the max annual VA pension rate.
- You are traveling for a scheduled VA C&P exam for disability compensation benefits.
- You are traveling to get a service dog.
- You need in-patient care.
- You are traveling for VA-approved transplant care.
- You are getting temporary lodging that’s been approved by VA.
- You cannot afford to pay for your travel, as defined by VA guidelines.
What Types of Travel Expenses Does the VA Cover?
Currently, the VA reimburses veterans and their eligible caregivers for two types of mileage and travel-related expenses: General Travel and Special Transportation.
- General travel includes mileage and travel-related expenses to and from VA healthcare appointments as well as C&P exams for VA disability benefits.
- Special transportation includes mileage and travel-related expenses for special types of transportation, such as ambulance, ambulette, or wheelchair van.
VA travel reimbursement pay covers mileage driven to and from your appointment, bridge, road, and tunnel tolls, parking, taxi and rideshare (yellow cab, Uber, Lyft), plane fares, ticket costs for public transportation, including train, subway, bus, ferry, or light rail, transportation by a specially equipped vehicle, like an ambulance or wheelchair van, when needed and approved, and meals and lodging (if needed).
What Is the Current VA Mileage Reimbursement Rate?
In 2022, the VA will reimburse round-trip mileage at 41.5 cents ($0.415) per mile for approved healthcare-related travel.
The VA uses Bing Maps to calculate your “door-to-door” mileage, based on the fastest and shortest route from your home to the closest VA or authorized non-VA health facility.
What is the VA Travel Reimbursement Monthly Deductible?
Before the VA can pay you back for travel-related expenses, you must pay a small deductible.
The current deductible is $3 one-way or $6 round-trip for each appointment, up to $18 total each month.
After you pay $18 within one month, the VA will pay the full cost of your approved travel for the rest of that month.
The VA is required by law to charge this deductible and withhold certain amounts from travel reimbursement payments.
*Note: The VA can waive this deductible if you can prove a financial need (see below).
How to Apply for a VA Travel Reimbursement Deductible Waiver
Veterans can apply for a VA travel reimbursement deductible waiver if they meet one or more of the following:
- You are low income (below the VA Pension income threshold)
- You receive VA Pension benefits
- You receive Housebound benefits
- You receive Aid & Attendance benefits
Note: If you have a 100 percent service connected VA disability rating AND are also receiving Aid and Attendance or Housebound benefits, you must request a waiver of the deductible.
If you believe your annual projected household income is at or below the means test threshold for the current year, you may apply for a VA travel pay deductible waiver for your claims using VA Form 10-10EZR – Health Benefits Update Form.
How to File for VA Travel Reimbursement Online (2022)
Veterans will need to use a system called “BTSSS VA Travel Pay” to file their claim for VA travel pay online.
Step #1: Go to the AccessVA website and click “I am a Veteran.”
Then, click on the “Veteran Travel Claim Entry” logo.
Note: Caregivers will also select the “I am a Veteran” option.
Step #2: Sign-in to the VA Travel Claim Entry Portal
You can sign in with your DS Logon, My HealtheVet, ID.me, or VA PIV account.
Step #3: Go to your BTSSS VA Travel Pay profile
Once you sign in, you’ll get re-directed to the travel portal welcome page.
Check the box to agree to the Terms and Conditions.
Then, click on the “Proceed to Profile Review” button.
Step #4: Review your VA Travel Pay profile, enter any missing information, and go to your dashboard
Make or change any information, and save any needed updates to your personal, contact, or financial information.
When you’re finished, click on the “Proceed to My Dashboard” button.
Note: Caregivers will first click “Proceed to My Veteran List,” then select the appropriate veteran name to go to the dashboard for that specific veteran.
Step #5: Create your VA Travel Reimbursement claim
There are two ways to do this:
- Option #1: Go to the “My Appointments” area. In the “Associated Appointments” column, click “Create Claim” for the appointment you want to claim for reimbursement.
- Option #2: Go to the “My Claims” area. Click “Create” in the upper right corner. Then, click “Create a Claim” for the appointment you want to claim for travel reimbursement.
This will open the “Initiate a Claim” form.
Confirm or update the address on the page.
Finally, click “Create Claim” and “Add Expenses.”
Step #6: Add your travel-related expenses and receipts
On the “Claim Expenses” page, check the boxes to choose an expense type and follow the instructions to add information about your expenses.
Click on the “Add Attachments” button to add copies of your expense receipts.
You can always go back to the main screen to view “My Claims” and “My Appointments.”
This is where you can create additional VA travel pay claims and add new appointments.
Step #7: Submit your VA travel pay reimbursement claim
Review the Beneficiary Travel Agreement Notice and check the box to show your agreement with the terms and conditions.
Then click “Submit Claim.”
Note: You must submit your travel pay claim within 30 days of your appointment!
About the Author
Brian Reese is one of the top VA disability benefits experts in the world and bestselling author of You Deserve It: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Veteran Benefits You’ve Earned (Second Edition).
Brian’s frustration with the VA claim process led him to create VA Claims Insider, which provides disabled veterans with tips, strategies, and lessons learned to win their VA disability compensation claim, faster, even if they’ve already filed, been denied, gave up, or don’t know where to start.
As the founder of VA Claims Insider and CEO of Military Disability Made Easy, he has helped serve more than 10 million military members and veterans since 2013 through free online educational resources.
He is a former active duty Air Force officer with extensive experience leading hundreds of individuals and multi-functional teams in challenging international environments, including a combat tour to Afghanistan in 2011 supporting Operation ENDURING FREEDOM.
Brian is a Distinguished Graduate of Management from the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, CO, and he holds an MBA from Oklahoma State University’s Spears School of Business, Stillwater, OK, where he was a National Honor Scholar (Top 1% of Graduate School class).