Airfare

I purchased airfare and didn’t pay an extra fee to select a seat, but am concerned that I won’t have a seat on the day I fly. What can I do?

  • If a ticket has been purchased and paid for, a seat will be provided. 
  • When purchasing airfare, always be alert to an automatic upgrade of seating (sometimes one must un-check the box in order to obtain coach airfare).

I am purchasing airfare, and only an upgrade seat is available. What should I do now?

  • While purchasing the airfare, take screen shots showing that no economy or coach seats are available and that upgraded seating is the only choice.

How do I prepare a cost comparison, for example driving versus flying?

  • Cost comparison is important, as the Travel policy requires the most economical means of travel. When comparing cost of travel, include all of the additional cost incurred due to the choice selected. For example:
    • Driving a personal vehicle needs to include the mileage expense, parking cost, tolls, additional nights in hotels, additional meals, etc.
    • Travel by air includes transportation to and from the airport, a rental vehicle, etc.

Alcohol and other beverages

Can I buy alcohol on my endowment fund?

Alcohol is never allowable during travel status. Alcohol for business meals may only be purchased on discretionary gift and endowment funds, and with Provost pre-approval.

Authorizations

Do I need pre-approval to travel?

Yes, pre-approval is required to travel internationally; UVM's Travel Policy requires a faculty or staff member (“traveler”) traveling outside of the U.S. or Canada to complete a Travel Authorization Form in PeopleSoft. The form requires the following information: Trip Description/ Dates/Comments/Dollar Amount/Chartstring. In addition, many federal and other sponsors must approve foreign travel before a trip takes place or expenses are incurred. Please contact Sponsored Project Administration if you have questions about the terms of your sponsored activities.

Who approves my travel authorization?

Domestic overnight out-of-state travel and international travel are approved at the departmental level.

Who creates my travel authorization?

If you are a self-service customer, and create your own Travel Authorizations:

If you are a full service customer of the Disbursement Center Travel team, email the following information to travel@uvm.edu for the creation of a Travel Authorization:

  • Name of traveler
  • Empl ID
  • Clear business purpose of trip
  • Destination
  • Start and end dates
  • Dollar amount to be encumbered
  • Chartstring
  • Email with the above  information.

To confirm if you are a self-service or full-service customer, visit this website.

I forgot to obtain a travel authorization. What happens now that the trip is complete?

If no travel authorization is created, travel expenses may not be reimbursed, regardless of the source of payment (personal payment or purchasing card).  If travel purchases were made on the UVM PurCard, they must be reimbursed.

If a group of UVM employees are traveling together, how many travel authorizations are required?
A travel authorization is required for each UVM employee.

For what purpose is the information on the PeopleSoft Travel Authorization Form used?

The information assists UVM Disbursement Center in validating the expenses eligible for reimbursement in a manner consistent with the Travel Policy, and encumbers funds on the chart string budget. It also allows the University to know the location of travelers abroad in the event of an emergency so as to facilitate emergency assistance to, or evacuation of, the traveler.

I am in the middle of my trip, how can I create a Travel Authorization?

You should not be traveling until your travel has been approved. If you travel prior to obtaining the required approvals the University will not reimburse you for your travel expenses. One cannot create a travel authorization in PeopleSoft after the start of the trip. However, if your trip extends for several days, you need to create a new Travel Authorization with a start date a few days in the future. Use the Comments box to indicate the actual trip start date.

I have a travel authorization and the trip has been cancelled. How do I cancel the travel authorization?

Email travel@uvm.edu with the travel authorization number, and the Disbursement Center Travel team will cancel the Travel Authorization for you.

An outside organization is reimbursing for my travel expenses, so I don’t want to enter a dollar amount in a travel authorization. What should I do?

You must complete a travel authorization. In addition to allowing the University to track travel for health and safety purposes, PeopleSoft will encumber any amount entered in a travel authorization, thereby reducing your budget balance available. The travel authorization requires a dollar amount; one can easily enter or request $1 if no encumbrance is needed, so there is little effect on the budget.

I am planning a UVM business trip with a personal stop. When we are allowed to travel, how should this be reflected in the travel authorization?

In the Comments box on the Travel Authorization, indicate the UVM business destination, and add the location information for the personal travel, adding the dates in each location.

Business meals

I had a business meal during my trip. Does it count toward the daily maiximum allowable meal limit?

Yes, business meals are included in the daily maximums of $60/day domestic, and $90/day international.

Do business meals require receipts?

Yes. Business meals require itemized receipts, names of the attendees of the meal, and clear business purposes, based on the IRS accountable plan rules.

Cash advances

How do I know if a payment has been issued for my cash advance?

Review the status of the Cash Advance in PeopleSoft. Has it been approved by the Expense Manager and the Prepay Auditor? Is the status Paid? If so, the payment has been issued.
Navigation to view the status of the cash advance: Employee Self Service > Travel and Expense Center > Cash Advance > View
Navigation to view check number and check date: Employee Self Service > Travel and Expenses > Review Payments

Can I pick up my cash advance?

Review the status of the Cash Advance in PeopleSoft. If it has been approved by the Expense Manager and Prepay Auditor and the trip begins in five or fewer business days, the advance may be picked up at Treasury Services in Waterman. It will be available no more than five business days prior to the departure date. Bring your UVM identification.

How/when do I remit remaining cash from my Cash Advance?

Apply the cash advance to the expense report as the last step. Print the detail page that was used to actually apply the cash advance (the page is titled: Apply Cash Advance(s)). This page displays all of the information that Treasury Services will need in order to properly process these funds. When the expense report is accurate and submitted, take this page, along with the funds that are being returned, to Treasury Services in Waterman.

Expense reports

How do I know if a check has been issued for my expense report?

You will receive an email notification when your check or direct deposit reimbursement has been issued.

Review the status of the Expense Report. Has it been approved by the Expense Manager and the Prepay Auditor? Is the status Paid?
Navigation to view the status of the expense report: Employee Self Service > Travel and Expense Center > Expense Report > View
Navigation to view check number and check date: Employee Self Service > Travel and Expenses > Review Payments

Can I be reimbursed for an expense before the trip?

No. According to the Travel Policy, no travel expenses will be reimbursed before the trip has occurred. If expenses must be incurred before the trip (e.g., airfare, conference registration, hotel, etc.), a UVM purchasing card should be used as means of payment.

How should I enter the travel meals on the expense report?

By each day, with all meals included (up to $60 / day domestic, $90 per day international)

What if I’m travelling for a month or more?

Keep a log of expenses. Sum meals by the week (or less often for longer trips). Attach the log to the expense report. A spreadsheet is fine for this purpose.

What if I’m buying groceries?

Enter separate lines for groceries. Do not enter multiple lines for one grocery store receipt.

Other than travel meals, what travel receipts are required?

Itemized receipts are required for the following:

  • Lodging
  • Airfare
  • Other transportation
  • Vehicle rental

Is scanning required?

If at all possible, scanning receipts and attaching in PeopleSoft will expedite processing and reimbursement. Please remember to notify travel@uvm.edu after submission.

Insurance

Am I covered by worker’s compensation if I am injured while traveling on UVM business?

Yes. Medical expenses related to the treatment of a work-related injury or illness are covered under worker's compensation. These expenses include doctor, hospital, and physical therapy services, prescription medication, and medical equipment. Alternative treatments such as massage therapy and acupuncture must be pre-approved.

Do I need travel accident insurance?

UVM maintains an Accidental Death and Dismemberment policy covering “employees injured while riding as a passenger in, or boarding or alighting from any land or water conveyance, or riding in a passenger in, or boarding or alighting from any civil aircraft in connection with UVM-related travel.” Please see the Travel Accident Insurance policy and contact Risk Management & Safety if you have questions regarding this coverage.

Should I purchase travel/trip insurance for international travel?

  • Travel insurance for international travel is allowable. This would accommodate weather emergencies, plane delays, etc.
  • Travelers are strongly encouraged to read the description of coverage or insurance policy for details regarding their available coverage.
  • If a traveler meets the requirements for coverage due to sickness, you may be covered for trip cancellation.
  • Trip insurance no longer covers changes in flight or conferences due to COVID-19, the pandemic or ongoing endemic situations.

International travel

Does UVM offer an emergency assistance and evacuation services program?

Yes. The University has a contract with International SOS (SOS) to provide worldwide assistance and evacuation services to persons engaged in UVM-related travel. Travelers are urged to obtain a “wallet card” from the UVM Department of Risk Management or the UVM Office of International Education. The wallet card contains the UVM group membership number, and the SOS alarm center numbers. SOS services range from telephone advice and referrals to full-scale evacuation by private air ambulance. The SOS network operates 24 hours a day.

The UVM membership number, 11BSGC000020, is the traveler’s member login. Pre-registration is not required, but a traveler may benefit from pre-registering because SOS provides medical, security and general travel advice, such as information on the standard of health care, how to pay for medical care, the availability of medications, safety of the blood supply, embassy/visa information, dialing code information, cultural etiquette and financial and voltage/plug information.

Is SOS a health insurance coverage provider?

No, SOS is not a health insurer. Travelers should check with their health insurance carriers before leaving the country about coverage and claims when medical assistance is needed outside the U.S. See http://www.uvm.edu/~oies/?Page=info.html.

I traveled internationally. My meals totaled $83 each day. Some days I have the receipts, some days not. Will I be reimbursed $90 for each day?

No. For the days that there are no meal receipts, the maximum of $75 per day is allowed. For the days that there are receipts totaling $83, the reimbursement will be $83.

I had a meal in New York City at 6pm, awaiting my flight to Paris, France. Is this a domestic or foreign travel meal?

This is considered a foreign meal. Generally, all expenses toward a trip are categorized by the destination.

Is travel to Canada considered foreign or domestic?

  • Travel to Canada requires an approved travel authorization.
  • If the destination is Canada, the trip is considered domestic for the purpose of daily meal maximum.
  • If the final destination is outside Canada, the trip is considered international. (For example, driving to Montreal to fly out to Paris, France – the mileage is international travel.)
  • Meals in Canada, with a Canadian destination: domestic meal rate.
  • National Institutes of Health foreign travel definition: Any travel outside of Canada and the United States (U.S.) and its territories and possessions.

May I travel to a location subject to a U.S. Department of State travel warning?

UVM does not prohibit travel to locations subject to a U.S. Department of State travel warning, but recommends that the traveler consult with the traveler’s supervisor and the UVM Department of Risk Management & Safety regarding risk mitigation strategies for the proposed travel.

Do export control restrictions govern what I may bring with me when traveling?

Yes. When traveling abroad, any physical items or technical data in your possession are considered to be “exported” from the U.S. to your destination(s). However, in most situations, commercially available University-owned electronic devices and software (e.g., laptops, data storage devices) qualify for the “tools of the trade” exception; similarly, personally owned items (e.g., cell phone) qualify for an exception and, as such, would not require a license for most countries. All data must qualify as public domain.

In general, what do I need to know about travel and export controls?

Export controls govern the shipment, transmission, or transfer of certain sensitive items, information or software to foreign persons or entities. The rules may require preauthorization from the U.S. Government in the form of an export license. Noncompliance can subject both the traveler and UVM to serious financial penalties; the traveler may also be at risk of imprisonment. The Office of the UVM Associate Vice President for Research Administration can provide pre-trip assistance by reviewing the specific requirements with the traveler.

What restrictions, if any, apply to UVM-related activities in a country that is subject to economic and trade sanctions?

Any proposed activities of this kind must be reviewed and authorized in advance by the UVM Associate Vice President for Research Administration. This includes UVM-related travel to countries subject to sanctions by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, which must be reviewed and approved by the UVM Associate Vice President for Research Administration (Export Controls Officer) before funds are expended and before travel occurs to ensure that all travel-related activities are covered by a general license or that, if mandated, a specific license is obtained before travel starts. Failure to obtain prior approval may result in significant personal liability for the traveler if a review shows export violations. It may also result in disallowance of expense reimbursement.

 

Mileage & Tolls

How should mileage be documented on an expense report?

  • Mileage is documented by indicating the business purpose of the trip, the destination and the mileage incurred.
  • If traveling by car for an extended period of time, or making frequent day trips, use a mileage log (Excel).

Can I enter mileage on an expense report when I am driving my own car around campus for meetings?

No, since you have not left your tax home (UVM worksite), mileage is not allowable.

I went through an unmanned toll booth on a recent trip. There was no transponder in the rental car and I received a bill in the mail. What should I do now?

  • If you have a purchasing card, you can use it to pay the toll.
  • If you do not have a purchasing card, pay the toll, then submit for reimbursement.

Taxes & tips

Are tax and tips on meals separate from or included in the daily meal maximums?

Tax and tips are included in the daily meal maximums. In other words, the domestice daily meal maximum is $60, including tax and tip.

My domestic travel meal was $58, the tax was $5 and the tip was $9. Can I submit the tax and tip on a separate line on my expense report?

No, the meal total includes tax and tip. In this case, it would sum to $72. The reimbursement amount would be $60.

I am a delegate entering a report for a traveler and the meal receipt did not indicate a gratuity. Can I add a tip to the expense report?

No, only expenses submitted can be entered on an expense report. (Perhaps the service was poor or the dining establishment was self service.)

How are tips calculated?

Tips are generally calculated based on the pre-tax amount. Generally, 15% to 20% is acceptable.

Travel meals

If I spent $45 on my travel meal, using my PurCard, should I submit an expense report for the balance of $15?

No. The actual expense was $45. since the $60 maximum is not a per diem there is no additional amount owed to the employee.

I had room service at the hotel. Do I just leave this as part of the hotel charge on my expense report?

No. Room service meals need to be broken out from the room charge when entering the expense report. Room service meals should be charged to a "travel meal" expense type.

Since the room service is on the hotel bill, do I need an itemized receipt for it?

If you are anticipating an international meal reimbursement greater than $75 for that day, and a room service meal is part of that expense, you should obtain the itemized receipt.

If meals are provided at a domestic conference, do I still get $60 per day?

Actual meal expenses are reimbursed, up to $60 per day. If a conference provides a meal(s), then the actual expense of the remaining meals should be submitted for reimbursement.

What about snacks?

Snacks are included in the daily total meal maximum.

If I spent $65 for domestic travel meals and have all of my receipts, for what amount will I be reimbursed?

The reimbursement will be for $60.

I’m traveling and taking three coworkers with me. Since I paid for all of the meals, I plan to include all of their reimbursements on my expense report, each for $60 per day. Correct?

No. Per the travel policy, any meal paid for by a UVM employee for multiple employees requires the itemized receipt to document the expense report. This would be true for every meal.

Do I always need to keep a log of expenses?

If you are traveling to an underdeveloped country, where receipts are not likely available, keep a log. If you are traveling for a lengthy period of time, it may be useful to keep a log. If it helps you to keep a log, by all means do so.

Other Questions

How do I forward my PeopleSoft worklist?

In PeopleSoft Financials, navigate to: Main Menu > Employee Self Service > UVM Self Service Additions > Workflow/Notify Preferences

How do I delegate authority to someone else to enter an expense report for me?

In PeopleSoft Financials, navigate to: Main Menu > Employee Self Service > Travel and Expense Center > Profiles and Preferences > Delegate Entry Authority

What is proof of purchase? 

Proof of purchase is a receipt or invoice showing the last four digits of credit card number, amount of cash tendered, etc.