Food and entertainment

Canteen meals

You may provide free or subsidised meals in staff canteens for all employees. If this facility is made available to all employees, these meals are not a taxable benefit in kind (BIK). Meals must be provided in a staff canteen. This does not include external third-party restaurants, cafes or similar establishments.

If the canteen is only available to certain employees, the meals that you provide are taxable benefits. The employees must pay Pay As You Earn (PAYE), Pay Related Social Insurance (PRSI) and Universal Social Charge (USC) on these benefits. 

To calculate the taxable value of the benefit for each employee:

  • Divide the costs of the canteen between the employees who are allowed to use it.
  • Do not include any employee who does not wish to use the facilities provided.

Meal vouchers

You may provide meal vouchers to your employees. These vouchers are a taxable BIK. They must pay PAYE, PRSI and USC on the value of benefit. The value of the benefit is the face value of the voucher less 19c. 

Entertainment expenses

Your employee may have to pay for business entertainment expenses to perform the duties of their employment with you. You may repay them for these expenses. Repaying this type of entertainment expenses is not a taxable BIK.

Seasonal parties and other inclusive events

You may decide to provide seasonal parties, special occasion meals or other inclusive events, such as sports days, for your employees. The cost of these events are not taxable BIKs, provided the expenses are reasonable and available to all employees.