Traveling can be a thrilling and enriching experience, but it also comes with its share of expenses. The costs can quickly add up from transportation and accommodations to daily meals.

Many travelers turn to Google Sheets as a versatile tool for managing travel expenses. Utilizing travel expense templates in Google Sheets helps individuals and businesses organize their financial data, ensuring specific details are not overlooked and that they are making the most of their money on their journey.

The beauty of using Google Sheets for this purpose lies in its accessibility and simplicity. With many pre-designed travel budget templates available, anyone can start planning their trip's finances with minimal setup.

Here are our favorite travel expense templates for Google Sheets, plus 1 service perfect for frequent travelers!

Best free travel expense templates for Google Sheets

1. Travel budget template by Vertex42

Creator: Vertex42

Main features: This template is designed for those with extensive itineraries. It includes various sections for stopovers and activities.

Benefits: Users benefit from a comprehensive approach to budgeting, ensuring that no expense is overlooked during travels. Users can also save ahead of their trip by inputting projected costs.

Travel budget template by Vertex42

👉 Download link

2. Travel expenses template by Google Sheets

Creator: Google Sheets

Main features: The template comes with fields for Accommodation, transport, eating in, eating out, drinks, activities, and other items, along with columns for each place in your itinerary.

Benefits: You can analyze travel costs based on location.

Travel expenses template by Google Sheets

👉 Download link

3. Travel expenses tracking template by Jeff Blum

Creator: Jeff Blum

Main features: Tracks up to 1 year of travel and has options for recording shorter trips.

Benefits: Travelers can download and edit their spreadsheets in Microsoft Excel. The charts tab provides an excellent overview of your trip or vacation.

Travel expenses tracking template by Jeff Blum

👉 Download link 

4. Travel expense report by Richard Anderson

Creator: Richard Anderson

Main features: Employees can use this template to request reimbursement for business-related travel expenses.

Benefits: This is great for small businesses that need a template for employees to use when on business-related trips.

Travel expense report by Richard Anderson

👉 Download link

5. Bonus: Shoeboxed, the best alternative to a travel expense spreadsheet

Need a simpler alternative to spreadsheets? We hear you.

Shoeboxed is a receipt management service that simplifies expense tracking for frequent travelers. It offers a streamlined approach to managing and maintaining records of expenses that you want to keep track of.

If you're traveling by car, you often have many expenses on the road, such as fuel, meals, and maintenance costs. 

Keeping track of all these receipts can be a challenge, but with Shoeboxed’s Magic Envelope service, drivers just need to stuff all their receipts into the prepaid envelope provided by Shoeboxed and send it in. 


Shoeboxed’s data entry team will scan, categorize, and organize these receipts digitally.

Here’s how that would work: Keep a Magic Envelope in the seat next to you as you drive. After you fill up for gas or leave that drive-in, slip the receipt into the prepaid envelope. Send the envelope in at the end of the month, and you won’t have to go near a spreadsheet again!


  • “Set and forget” expense reporting—use the Magic Envelope to store your receipts, then send them in and get them scanned and uploaded to your account. 

  • Accurate mileage tracking that can be included in expense reports.

  • Add multiple users to a single account for FREE.

  • Store digital copies of important documents, including invoices, warranties, contracts, and other important documents.

  • Importing e-receipts to your Shoeboxed account is as easy as syncing your Gmail with Shoeboxed, using Shoeboxed's special Gmail Receipt Sync feature.

  • Integrate with other software, such as QuickBooks, for tax reporting and accounting purposes.

  • Used and trusted by travelers.


  • Plans that include the Magic Envelope cannot be purchased through the mobile app.


  • Plans that include the Magic Envelope start at $18/month, up to $54/month. 

  • All monthly plans come with a 30-day free trial.

  • All annual plans are charged upon sign-up and come with a full money-back guarantee if the plan is terminated at any point within the first 30 days.

Shoeboxed is the only receipt scanner app that will handle both your paper receipts and your digital receipts—saving customers up to 9.2 hours per week from manual data entry!

Hit the road with Shoeboxed 🚗

Stuff receipts into the Magic Envelope while on the road. Then send them in once a month to get scanned. 💪🏼 Try free for 30 days!

Get Started Today

What else can Shoeboxed do?

Shoeboxed's official homepage

Shoeboxed has been voted as the best receipt scanner app for tax season by Hubspot and given the Trusted Vendor and Quality Choice awards by Crozdesk.

A quick overview of Shoeboxed's award-winning features:

a. Mobile app and web dashboard

There are many ways to upload receipts to Shoeboxed.

Shoeboxed’s mobile app lets you snap photos of paper receipts and upload them to your account from your phone.

Shoeboxed also has a user-friendly web dashboard so you can drag and drop receipts or documents from your desktop.


b. Gmail receipt sync feature for capturing e-receipts

Importing e-receipts to your Shoeboxed account is as easy as syncing your Gmail with Shoeboxed, using Shoeboxed's special Gmail Receipt Sync feature.

Shoeboxed’s Gmail Receipt Sync grabs all receipt emails and sends them to your account for automatic processing! These receipts are then labeled as Sent to Shoeboxed in your Gmail inbox.

In short, Shoeboxed pulls the receipt data from your email, including the vendor, purchase date, currency, total, and payment type, and organizes it in your account.

Your purchases will even come with images of the receipts attached!

c. Expense reports

You can create comprehensive expense reports with just a few clicks.

Expense reports let you view all of your expenses in one cohesive document. They also make it simple to share your purchases with your accountant.

Shoeboxed makes it easy to export your yearly expenses into a detailed report. All expenses come with receipts attached.

You can also choose certain types of receipts to include in your expense report. Just select the receipts you want to export and click “export selected.”

d. Search and filter

Scan your receipts with Shoeboxed

Call up any receipt or warranty in seconds with advanced search features.

Filter receipts based on vendors, date, price, currency, categories, payment type, and more.

e. Accounting software integrations

Export expenses to your accounting software in just a couple of clicks.

Shoeboxed integrates with 12+ apps, including QuickBooks, Xero, and Wave Accounting, to automate tedious life tasks.

f. Unlimited number of free sub-users

Add an unlimited number of free sub-users to your account, such as family members, employees, accountants, and tax professionals.

g. Shoeboxed's mileage tracker

After you sign up for Shoeboxed, you can start tracking miles in seconds:

  • Open the Shoeboxed app.

  • Tap the “Mileage” icon.

  • Click the “Start Mileage Tracking” button.

  • And drive!

Whenever you start a trip, Shoeboxed tracks your location and miles and saves your route as you drive.

Shoeboxed's mileage tracker

As you make stops at stores and customer locations, you can drop pins to make tracking more precise.

At the end of a drive, you’ll click the “End Mileage Tracking” button to create a summary of your trip. Each summary will include the date, editable mileage and trip name, and your tax deductible and rate info.

Click “Done” to generate a receipt for your drive and get a photo of your route on the map. Shoeboxed will automatically categorize your trip under the mileage category in your account.

h. The Magic Envelope

The Magic Envelope - Shoeboxed

The Magic Envelope service is Shoeboxed's most in-demand feature, particularly for businesses, as it lets users outsource receipt management.

When you sign up for a plan that includes the Magic Envelope, Shoeboxed will mail you a pre-paid envelope for you to send your receipts in.

Once your receipts reach the Shoeboxed facility, they’ll be digitized, human-verified, and tax-categorized in your account.

Have your own filing system?

Shoeboxed will even put your receipts under custom categories. Just separate your receipts with a paper clip and a note explaining how you want them organized!

How to scan receipts with a receipt scanning service

Break free from manual data entry ✨

Use Shoeboxed’s Magic Envelope to ship off your receipts and get them back as scanned data in a private, secure cloud-based account. 📁 Try free for 30 days!

Get Started Today

How to create a travel expense template

Creating a travel expense template in Google Sheets helps travelers to stay organized and keeps their finances in check throughout their trips.

1. Basic structure and formatting

A Google Sheets travel expense template starts with a well-organized layout. The first row typically serves as the header, clearly labeling columns such as Date, Description, Category, Amount, and Currency.

Use bold text for header names to distinguish them from other entries. For easy reading, alternating row colors can be applied, and appropriate column widths should be set to ensure all data is visible. Text alignment—dates and descriptions to the left and numerical values to the right—maintains a professional look.

2. Essential categories and fields

Key categories in a travel expense template might include Transportation, Lodging, Meals, Entertainment, and Miscellaneous Expenses. Each category should have its own column or be selectable from a dropdown list in the Category column.

Including a field for notes allows for additional details, such as the purpose of the expense or related project codes.

3. Automating calculations

Google Sheets offers powerful formulas that they can employ to automate various tasks. For instance, the SUM function adds totals across a range of cells, perfect for tallying daily expenses or category totals.

Additionally, the SUMIF function allows them to sum up values based on specific criteria, such as only adding expenses labeled as "transportation."

If playing around in Google Sheets isn't your idea of fun, consider fully automating expense management by outsourcing all your data entry to Shoeboxed!

4. Conditional formatting

Google Sheets allows Conditional Formatting to change the color of cells based on specific conditions automatically. When applied to a travel expense template, it can highlight categories that are over budget or visually distinguish between reimbursable and non-reimbursable expenses.

For example, one could set a rule to turn the cell red if the expense exceeds a defined threshold or green if it is within budget.

Dropdown lists can be used to select expense categories or payment methods, ensuring data consistency. Checkboxes are helpful for marking expenses as cleared or needing further review.

This level of control simplifies the management of travel expenses and can be particularly beneficial for users sharing the document, as it sets a standard for marking different types of costs.

See also: Top Apps for Taxi Drivers to Enhance Efficiency and Earnings

Frequently asked questions

How can I use Google Sheets to track my travel expenses?

One can easily track travel expenses with Google Sheets by creating a ledger of the costs categorized by type, such as transportation, lodging, gifts, and food, and with columns for date, cost, description, etc. Users may input their expenses as they occur, helping them stay on budget.

What are some tips for creating an effective travel budget spreadsheet?

When constructing a travel budget spreadsheet, including categories for all expected expenses is important. Also, ensure that it is easy to update on the go. One should consider using formulas to calculate total spending and remaining budget automatically.

Is it possible to generate an expense report using Google Sheets?

Google Sheets allows users to generate detailed expense reports. These reports may include categorized expenses, visual summaries, and automated calculations that simplify expense tracking and reporting.

Can you suggest ways to customize a Google Sheets travel budget for personal use?

A Google Sheets travel budget can be personalized by adding custom categories, using currency conversion formulas for international travel, and incorporating charts to visualize spending trends.

Are there any travel expense templates for Excel that can be imported into Google Sheets?

Excel travel expense templates can be imported into Google Sheets for continued use. The process involves opening the Excel file in Google Sheets and then saving it within the platform, giving users the flexibility to choose their preferred template format.

In closing

By incorporating a template into their routine, travelers can focus more on the substantive aspects of travel and less on the administrative intricacies of expense reporting.

Tomoko Matsuoka is managing editor for Shoeboxed, MailMate, and other online resource libraries. She covers small business tips, organization hacks, and productivity tools and software.

About Shoeboxed!

Shoeboxed is a receipt scanning service with receipt management software that supports multiple methods for receipt capture: send, scan, upload, forward, and more!

You can stuff your receipts into one of our Magic Envelopes (prepaid postage within the US). Use our receipt tracker + receipt scanner app (iPhone, iPad and Android) to snap a picture while on the go. Auto-import receipts from Gmail. Or forward a receipt to your designated Shoeboxed email address.

Turn your receipts into data and deductibles with our expense reports that include IRS-accepted receipt images.

Join over 1 million businesses scanning & organizing receipts, creating expense reports and more—with Shoeboxed.

Try Shoeboxed today!