Federal employees traveling for work will get a little more money for lodging under the new 2017 per diem rates released by the General Services Administration on Aug. 12.

Traveling feds can get reimbursed for up to $142 a day in expenses: $91 for hotels — up from $89 per night in 2016 — and $51 for meals and incidentals, the same as the current rate.

These rates are set for the entire continental U.S., save for about 350 nonstandard areas like cities and major metropolitan areas where prices tend to be higher.

The new per diem limits take effect Oct. 1, 2016.

Feds can find out exactly how much they get per day using GSA's per diem look-up tool, which can be searched by state, county or zip code.

There are no new nonstandard areas in this year's per diem notification, though GSA is looking to reassess the process for determining those areas and rates next year.

Those rates are currently set using average daily rate (ADR) data collected from the hospitality industry. GSA plans to establish an interagency working group — in conjunction with public input — to figure out whether this is the best way to set those rates.

"GSA looks forward to assessing all of the approximately 350 areas where we set rates higher than the standard rate to determine if those boundary lines are drawn in the best way possible to meet agencies' missions," GSA Administrator Denise Turner Roth said.

Aaron Boyd is an awarding-winning journalist currently serving as editor of Federal Times — a Washington, D.C. institution covering federal workforce and contracting for more than 50 years — and Fifth Domain — a news and information hub focused on cybersecurity and cyberwar from a civilian, military and international perspective.

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