Gifts and travel paid by employer

Your employer or client must provide the tax authorities with information on the taxable and deductible benefits you receive. These will be shown in your Certificate of Pay and Tax Deducted (annual statements).

You should note that even if your employer has not done this or you have received a taxable benefit from someone other than your employer, you must declare the value of what you have received in your tax return.

New from the 2021 income year

From and including the 2021 income year, the general tax exemption amount limit for gifts from employers is kr 5000.

Further, the condition that gifts given by employers must be a general rule for all employees, has been abolished. This applies to all all kinds of occasions where employers give gifts. 

The tax exemption rules for gifts can therefore now be used for example to give employees a free telephone and / or internet. The rules can also be used in connection with the employee's benefit of a free car, free housing, interest benefit, etc.


The examples only concern the tax rules.

Even if the gift was not given to you by your employer, there will still be a tax obligation if the gift has a clear link to your employment. It can generally be assumed that if you probably would not have received the gift had you not been employed where you are or had the assignment you were given, the gift will normally be taxable.

As a general rule, all benefits earned through work are taxable. This also applies to fees in the form of payments in kind. This applies regardless of whether the benefit is linked to or separate from your employment. However, there is a separate tax exemption for rewards for individual work performances to people who are not employed by the company.  This applies to non-monetary gifts with a value of up to NOK 500. If the value of the gift is more than NOK 500, the entire gift will be taxable.

In principle, all gifts from employers are taxable, but there are certain exceptions for anniversary and other employment-related gifts. In order for a gift to be tax-free, it must be non-monetary, and the tax exemption will only apply to gifts worth up to NOK 4,000. When your colleague reaches the age of 50 (or 60, 70, 75 or 80), she can therefore receive such a gift tax-free.

The limit for other gifts in employment (e.g. Christmas gifts, summer gifts, gift cards that cannot be redeemed for cash, etc.) is NOK 5,000 per year. The condition is that the gift consists of something other than monetary amounts. If the value of the gift is more than NOK 5,000, the excess amount will be taxable.

Gifts given on a special occasion which have a nominal value, such as flowers, confectionery, a reasonably priced bottle of wine or similar may nevertheless be given tax-free.

If you have received salary or other remuneration for work and the total fee from the same client does not exceed NOK 1,000 during the year, the amount will tax-free and must not be declared in your tax return. However, this will not apply if the fee constitutes business income for you, because the entire amount must then be included in the revenue basis in the business income.

If you earn bonus points through business or other travel and you use the points privately, this will constitute taxable income in the same way as other income. The reason is that any benefit earned through work or commercial enterprise constitutes taxable income. As long as the employment relationship is the reason why you earned the benefit, it is of no significance to the tax obligation if you did not receive the benefit directly from your employer, for example.

You have an independent obligation to declare in your tax return the value of any and all taxable benefits that are not reported elsewhere. The value of bonus points that are used privately must normally be set to what it would have cost you to purchase the service or the goods yourself. The amount must be entered in your tax return. 

Participation in non-professional activities paid for by anyone other than your employer will normally be taxable for the participant. Whether you are "expected" to attend or the company considers it important that one of their employees is "visible" will not normally be of any significance in the assessment of the tax obligation.

For more information, see the Assessment ABC and the topic "Study travel, congress participation".

If you take your spouse and/or children to a joint event which is arranged for the company's employees, including hotel stays of up to two nights, this may, depending on the circumstances, be exempt from taxation under the rules concerning reasonable welfare measures in employment relationships. If your spouse comes with you on a business trip, his participation will be taxable as salary for you if his expenses are covered by your employer.

For more information, see the Assessment ABC and the topic "Welfare measures".

No, the delegation of such tasks does not change the nature of the trip from being a holiday for him. The coverage of private expenses is therefore taxable.

In order for a trip to be accepted as a business trip, so that the coverage of expenses is not taxable for the participants, the principle aim of the trip must be professional or work-related. Based on the information you have given, your trip would appear to more of a holiday than work. It will therefore be taxable.

The special tax exemption that applies to reasonable welfare measures assumes both that the measure can be characterised as a welfare measure and that the measure is both reasonable and common in working life.

A social event that’s combined with a shorter stay at a hotel can be considered a welfare measure. This applies to accommodations with up to two overnight stays.

If the accommodation exceeds two overnight stays, a part of the accommodation limited to two overnight stays can be considered a welfare measure. Costs covered by the employer beyond accommodations of two overnight stays must be treated as salary, or in accordance with rules concerning tax-free gifts.

Accommodations of more than two overnight stays are therefore taxable for the employee, and the employer must calculate employer’s national insurance contributions on the amount.

For more information, see the guide Skatte-ABC (in Norwegian only) and the topic "Velferdstiltak” (Welfare measures).

No. This triggers a tax obligation for the participants and a duty to calculate employer's national insurance contributions. The tax-free welfare measure scheme does not cover enterprises which have no employees or enterprises with one or more employees who collectively do not have working hours and salaries which correspond to one full-time position within the enterprise. The scheme also does not cover limited liability companies with one shareholder who is the only employee in the company.

For more information, see the Assessment ABC and the topic "Welfare measures".