Federal GSA Per Diem Rates

Government & Military Per Diem Rates

This year there was a Per Diem Rate increase in many locations, a decrease in some, and other locations remained flat.  Per Diem Rates fluctuate every year and reset annually.  The FY Per Diem Rates officially resets on October 1st, of each year, which is the start of the new Federal Government Fiscal Year that begins on October 1st of every year.

Local and Foreign Travel Rates

Per diem rates are reset annually by the General Services Administration (GSA) which issues official U.S. per diem travel rates for the government at the Federal and most State levels, the Military, and the Internal Revenue Service.  The GSA establishes per diem rates for official travel within the United States and outlying territories. The U.S. Department of State sets the per diem rates for foreign locations, and the Defense Travel Management Office (DTMO) sets all of the government-wide per diem rates for outside the United States including all non foreign areas, e.g., AK, HI and US Territories.

Government Per Diem Lodging Rates

Although most of the government travel locations throughout the Continental United States (CONUS) decreased, many of these locations either experienced a slight increase or a return to the standard rates.  Some of the travel locations experienced no change at all, while other saw a slight increase or decrease of about 5%.  The government travel website TDY Lodging has compiled some of the most up to date information about Per Diem Rates and how to calculate separate allowances for Lodging as well as Meals & Incidental expenses.

GSA Per Diem Rate Changes by TDY Location

Just prior to the end of the fiscal year, the GSA issued revised per diem travel rates for 2016-2017.  The standard average per diem lodging rate has stayed relatively the same at $77 for hotel or furnished apartment accommodations, with the the average Meals & Incidentals rate set at $46 per day.  Of particular note is that lodging rates in several major metropolitan areas, including Washington DC, Chicago and Boston, will rise this year.  After seeing a drop in the overall rate last year, the increase is a welcomed change for many travelers and lodging providers seeking to attract government and military personnel to their establishments.

Per Diem Rate Query

Find out the official per diem lodging and meals rates using the rate calculator below. Rates reset every federal government fiscal year on October 1st. For the most up to date and current rates in the continental United States (“CONUS Rates”) search below by city and state (or ZIP code):

FY 2016-2017 DoD Per Diem Rate Query Calculator

Enter either City & State -or- Zip Code:



What are the Local Effects of a Per Diem Rate Increase or Decrease?

Often when rates decrease at a highly traveled destination, hoteliers and other lodging providers will try to cut back on complimentary services like free breakfast, newspapers, or gym passes for extended stay travelers.  When rates increase not only do local lodging providers do well, but they often pass on incentives to government travelers in an attempt to attract this customer base to their establishment on a recurring basis.  The more income brought in by hotels is often passed on to government travelers through additional services and improvements to the overall quality of the hotel or furnished rental property.

Will there be a FY 2017 Per Diem Rate Increase or Decrease?

A lot of speculation has gone into whether FY 2017 will bring about an increase or drop in government per diem rates.  While the largest factor will depend on the overall state of the U.S. economy, it will also depend on the FY 2017 Defense Authorization Bill, which may force branches of the military to cut back on travel related costs when sending personnel on TDY assignments.  Most of the rates during the most recent adjustment increased to the authorized rates from two years ago.  An increase in rates not only helps local economies that support military installations and government travelers, but higher rates also provide better amenities for travelers because lodging providers are less likely to decrease costs by cutting back on incidental items, and with an increase they’re more likely to incentivise travelers with complimentary services.  Let’s hope for a DoD and government per diem rate increase in 2017.