What can be reimbursed

As a Tails worker or regular contributor, Tails can reimburse:

  • small hardware expenses
  • big hardware expenses

as long as they are needed to do your Tails work.

Tails also reimburses:

  • travel to and from Tails meetings
  • food you paid during Tails meetings (sprints, summit)
  • food your bought during your travel to a Tails meeting.

See also:

Small hardware expenses

You do not need pre-approval for small hardware expenses, like buying a new USB stick. See below for how to claim your expenses.

Big hardware expenses

You need to ask for pre-approval for big hardware expenses, like buying a laptop. See below for how to ask for pre-approval and how to claim your expenses.

Getting reimbursed when attending Tails meetings

Before attending Tails meetings (work sprints, summit) you will receive corresponding information about travel tickets and reimbursements from the accounting team or the sprint organizer.

Ask for pre-approval of a big expense

If you plan to buy a laptop or make another big expense, you need to ask tails@boum.org for pre-approval. To do this, send an email with:

  • planned expense: description of item, amount
  • short explanation of why you need to make this expense
  • tell us if you want Tails to cover the costs entirely or, if you will use it also for other work, if you want us to cover only parts of the expense
  • if you can: remind us if Tails has already paid for the same expense in the past and when

Expect a reply in 2-4 weeks.

Claim your expenses

When you have spent money on behalf of Tails and want to be reimbursed, you need to send an expense report and the corresponding receipts to the accounting team.

What documents we need


If the amount of the expense is under 150€, and the receipt never had any name on it (e.g. a supermarket receipt): it's fine; we need the original paper receipt.

Otherwise, if the expense amounts to 150€ or more, we need a receipt or invoice with a name on it.

When making the expense, you can ask the vendor to write "Center for the Cultivation of Technology gGmbH" as the client name, to avoid having your name on the invoice.

If you got only a digital document (e.g. a PDF sent by the airline for your flight booking confirmation): no need for paper; we need that file.

What we will do with your receipts

tl;dr: your receipts will be sent to untrusted third-parties, and might even be published in reports by funders or fiscal sponsors.

How to claim your expenses

To get your expenses reimbursed, follow these steps in the following order:

Big hardware expenses need to be claimed within 10 days.
  1. Gather all the proofs of expense as explained in "What documents we need".

  2. Ask the accounting team where to send your paper proofs, or send the digital receipts by email (see next step).

  3. Send one single email to tails-accounting@boum.org with:

    • a detailed list of your receipts ("expense report") with for each:

      • Date of payment / Date of receipt
      • Description of item
      • Amount paid (convert to Euros using the rate of the day you paid the item)
    • total sum to be reimbursed if you send several receipts

    • for any expense that has no paper trail: the digital documents used as proofs;
    • if relevant, a pointer to the expense pre-approval;
    • how you want to be reimbursed

Special needs

If you can't, or don't want to, share the original receipt

Note: this also applies when you have lost the original receipt ;)

Send one single email to tails-accounting@boum.org with:

  • the (possibly anonymized) proof of expense; scans or photographs are OK; we will not share it outside of the accounting team;

  • if you have lost all the valid proofs of an expense: some way to prove, as best as you can, that you did spend this money (e.g. boarding pass, booking confirmation email, testimony of a team-mate who saw you spend the money, etc.);

  • for lost travel tickets: ask the accounting team for advice;

  • your expense report.