Meal vouchers: raise of exemption limit 2023

Meal vouchers – raise of exemption limit announced the 31 May 2023: limit set to € 6.91

Meal vouchers, in French referred to as ‘tickets restaurant’, are one of the most common employee benefits in France. They increase the purchasing power of employees, particularly important for employees with a low income.

Meal vouchers: exemption limits

Besides being a nice perk, restaurant tickets can help to optimize social contributions and payroll taxes. The employer contribution to the meal vouchers is fully exempt if the following two conditions are met:
– The employer contribution must respect a minimum participation of 50%, and a maximum participation of 60% to the value of the restaurant ticket;
– The employer contribution must respect the exemption limit set by the French government.

Employer participation to meal vouchers: raise of exemption limit 2023

In principle, the limit of exemption for the employer contribution is revaluated in the beginning of the calendar year. In recent years, several significant raises have occurred.
In 2022, due to inflation, the exemption ceiling had been revalued as of January 2022 and as of 1 September 2022: raising it from € 5.55 in 2021, to € 5.69 and then further to € 5.92.

As of 1 January 2023, it was revaluated to € 6.50, representing a raise by 9.80 %.
This raise was not sufficient. Due to inflation, the French government recently announced a raise by 6.31%, setting the rate to € 6.91.

The latest exemption limits can be found on URSSAF:
Latest meal voucher exemption limit

Maximizing employer participation – a case study

To benefit from the maximum participation of € 6.91, the nominal value of the restaurant ticket must be fixed to an amount between € 11.52 for an employer participation of 60 % and € 13.82 for an employer participation of 50%.
For an employee working 220 days per year, the employer can contribute € 1520,20 per year – fully exempt from social contributions and taxes.