Enter information into the bill fields

If you're creating or editing a bill, here's some guidance on entering information into the fields. Xero helps by filling in some of them for you – though you can change them to suit your organisation.

Bill detail fields

Enter the customer name, date and other bill details.


Enter the name of the supplier you received the bill from.

If there's a previously approved or paid bill for the contact, you can add the last item lines from that bill to the new one.

Changes made to the contact name will not automatically update the name on a repeating bill template. The contact name will also need to be updated on the repeating bill template.


The date displayed on the bill.

If you're entering a bill from a previous system, make sure the date is before your conversion date.

Conversion balances

Due date

The date the bill is due for payment.

You can use shortcuts to enter dates in Xero. For example, type '+30' to add 30 days to the bill date.

You can also set up a planned payment schedule for bills. The payment date is your own, not your supplier's due date.


You can add a reference to help you search for the bill, and to match with your bank account transactions. It'll show on the bill and any related customer statements.

If the reference and customer name match one or more existing bills, Xero shows links to the bills.

Image showing message when AP bill already exists.

Permit (Singapore only)

If your Xero organisation pays taxes in Singapore, enter the supplier's permit number here. This feeds through to your IAF audit file.

File attachments

You can attach any relevant files to your bill.


The overall amount that you owe. It includes all line items and tax depending on your selected setting.


If you have a Business Edition plan with multi-currency, you can select a foreign currency that you've already added or click Add currency to add a new one. You can edit the exchange rate if required.

Amounts are

Select the tax setting to apply to the amounts. If the item has VAT, select:

  • Tax Exclusive to add the tax to each item amount. You can adjust the VAT manually. For example, to summarise different rates for multiple items into one line.
  • Tax Inclusive to include the tax with each item amount. Each item shows as tax exclusive when approved. Xero automatically splits out the tax component for reporting.

Item line fields

Add, edit and delete the items you're buying.

You can set default information for individual suppliers. When you create a new bill, the defaults are automatically entered into the fields. For example, the tax setting, account, and tax rate.


Select an existing inventory item or add a new item.


Enter a description of the item you're buying, or a heading to categorise the items below it.

You can enter the item's inventory code in the description to show it on the bill.

If you're changing an item line with an account code into a description-only line, delete the line and add a new one.

If you assign an item to a fixed asset account, the item is added to the fixed asset register as a draft that you can edit later (except for items with a zero-value amount).


The quantity of the item you've bought.

Unit Price

The price of the item. This can be a positive, negative or zero amount, as long as the bill amount isn't negative.

If you're entering a bill in a foreign currency and you've selected an inventory item, the unit price of the inventory item will be the same as the base currency amount entered in your inventory settings. Adjust the amount manually so it matches the foreign currency you've selected.


Xero populates an account based on how you've created bills in the past, but you can edit this suggestion. If your organisation has approved less than 150 bills, select the account to code the purchase to.

You can edit the account on a paid bill if the new account's tax rate is the same.

Fixed asset accounts behave differently depending on whether you create or edit a bill:

  • If you select a fixed asset account when creating a bill, Xero adds the to the fixed asset register as a draft (except for items with a zero-value amount).
  • If you edit a non-fixed asset account to a fixed asset account, Xero doesn't create a draft fixed asset. You'll need to add the draft fixed asset to your asset register and register it.
If you edit a bill with a deleted or archived account, you can't use that account again.
Tax Rate

Tax on the transaction (required only if you've selected Amounts are Tax Exclusive or Tax Inclusive).


The tracking category if you want to track items.

Assign expenses to a customer

You can assign expenses to the customer to recover expenses you've been charged as part of a job.

Save & approve a bill

Select how you want to & approve the bill.


You can save a draft bill, continue editing, submit for approval, or add another one. Depending on your choice, the bill shows on the Draft or Awaiting Approval tabs.

Once saved, it can be emailed or printed. When all the fields are complete, it can be approved.


Depending on your user role, you can approve the bill, add another, view the next one (if you have more than one in draft or awaiting approval), or print it. The bill shows on the Awaiting Payment tab.

When you approve the bill, you can allocate any existing credit the customer has (unallocated Awaiting Payment credit notes) to the bill.

Once approved, you can make payments to it, and reconcile it to your bank account.

Your pricing plan determines the number of bills you can approve each month.