Heads up for A/P: The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) has announced its FY 2024 per-diem allowance rates for folks traveling for work in the continental United States (CONUS), effective Oct. 1, 2023.
While many employers use the per-diem rates set by the GSA, they can use alternative reimbursement methods as well, such as the IRS high-low method which establishes one flat rate per-diem for high-cost locations and one flat rate for all other locations.
For FY 2024, most of CONUS (approximately 2,600 counties) is covered by the standard rate of $166 – $107 for lodging, $59 for meals and incidental expenses (M&IE). The standard lodging rate increases $9 from the 2023 rate, while the M&IE per-diem remains unchanged.
The M&IE per-diem tiers for FY 2024 are also unchanged at $59-$79.
Why the lodging per-diem bump up?
GSA bases its maximum lodging allowances on historical average daily rate (ADR) data, minus 5%. However, the agency took into consideration that “the COVID-19 pandemic led to unprecedented declines in ADR, followed by a volatile hotel industry recovery. The ADR data available to establish FY 2024 rates was from before the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency expired on May 11, 2023.”
So GSA went by the available data from April 2022 through March 2023. Similar to the approach it took for FY 2023, GSA made the upward adjustment to ensure that maximum lodging allowances for federal travelers will be sufficient in FY 2024.
What about higher-cost localities?
Starting Oct. 1, 2023, GSA has designated 302 non-standard areas (NSAs) that will have per-diem rates higher than the standard rate.
While there are two new NSA locations this year – Huntsville, AL (Madison County) and Charles Town, WV (Jefferson County) – the good news is there will be fewer NSAs to keep track of for higher travel per-diems.
The following locations that were NSAs, or part of an NSA, in FY 2023 will drop off the list and move into the standard CONUS rate category:
- Hammond/Munster/Merrillville, IN (Lake County)
- Wichita, KS (Wichita County)
- Baton Rouge, LA (East Baton Rouge Parish)
- Baltimore County, MD
- Frederick, MD (Frederick County)
- East Lansing/Lansing, MI (Ingham and Eaton counties)
- Kalamazoo/Battle Creek, MI (Kalamazoo and Calhoun counties)
- Eagan/Burnsville/Mendota Heights, MN (Dakota County)
- Akron, OH (Summit County)
- Wooster, OH (Wayne County)
- Erie, PA (Erie County)
- Corpus Christi, TX (Nueces County)
- Round Rock, TX (Williamson County)
- Appleton, WI (Outagamie County)
- Brookfield/Racine, WI (Waukesha and Racine counties), and
- Morgantown, WV (Monongalia County).