Travel Tips

Before You Travel
Pre-Authorization

Meals

  • Meals (Day Trips) - Per Diem is NOT allowed for day-only travel, regardless of leave and return times.  Keep your itemized receipts for your business meals.
  • Meal expenditures incurred during trips which did not require overnight lodging is reportable to the IRS.
  • Meals while on official business must involve a substantive and bona fide business discussion with a non-College employee.  Please see Per Diem and Business Meals for further explanation.
  • More information about non-travel business meals is located here

Per Diem

  • Per Diem is based on the location specified for the overnight lodging.
  • Per Diem is NOT reportable to the IRS (meals incurred during trips which require overnight lodging).
  • You can calculate the Per Diem amounts using the Commonwealth Per Diem Calculator 
  • The Commonwealth of Virginia uses the lodging and M&IE per diem rates for foreign travel as defined by the Federal Government.
  • Rates for cities and countries outside the 48 contiguous states can be found at International Per Diem Rates by Location (Int'l Meal & Incidentals Breakdown) by choosing the appropriate country and then selecting your date of travel for the current updated Maximum Travel Per Diem Allowance for Foreign Areas. If a specific city is not listed, use the “Other” rate shown for that country.

Travel Advance

Lodging

  • See here for more details.
  • include the folio (itemized hotel bill obtained at time of checkout). Explain fully any unusual charges (i.e., Internet) and include it with your voucher. 
  • From the Travel Website: "If a payment for lodging is made through the Internet, print a copy of the receipt for the electronic purchase showing the total costs, confirmed services and proof of payment."
  • If the Expedia purchase includes airfare and hotel, documentation MUST be submitted as to the total cost of the hotel.

After You Return From your Trip

Expense Report

  • Proof of payment is a document that proves that a certain amount of money has been paid and transaction completed.  Make sure your receipts clearly say how the item was paid for.  If not you may need to include a heavily redacted bank/credit card statement.
  • A "how to" guide is located here

Air travel

  • Reimbursement for first class air or rail travel is prohibited
    • NOTE: Documents that validate the mode and class of travel are required for all air and rail reimbursements made directly to the traveler. Generally, airline and rail travel cannot exceed the rates charged for tourist or coach fare. 
  • More information is located here

International Travel

Driving

Food

  • Everyone gets Per Diem now, unless you took a day trip. Please do not submit meal receipts. 
  • If meals are offered as part of your conference, make sure to check that box on the per diem calculator. If you did not attend the conference meal, the traveler must include a note or other documentation with the Travel Expense Reimbursement Voucher documenting this information (stating why).
  • Day trip meals - Meals while on official business must involve a substantive and bona fide business discussion with a non-College employee. The employee must complete a Non-Travel Business Meal form and submit it with the reimbursement request. Identification of all persons involved must be listed on the Business Meal form. The College will reimburse official business meals based on actual costs incurred up to the amount shown for the applicable meal in the M&IE Rate Table. An original, itemized receipt is required for reimbursement of all business meals. The M&IE rate used will correspond to the location in which the individual purchases the official business meal.

Transportation

  • For taxis, shuttle vans and other forms of “for hire transportation,” receipts are required only if the reimbursement claim exceeds $25.  A business purpose MUST be included.
  • Parking and Toll expenses are reimbursable. A receipt is required for reimbursement claims where each individual claim is greater $10. Reimbursement must be claimed as an “other expense” on the travel reimbursement voucher.
  • Parking fees must be shown separately on the voucher.

Rental Car

Conference Travel

  • Conference itinerary MUST be included.  This is mainly to show if meals were included.  If meals are offered as part of the conference, the traveler must reduce the per diem amount by the appropriate allowance amount whether the meal was a breakfast, lunch and/or dinner.
  • Travelers must keep receipts and accurate records of all expenses to ensure correct reporting and submission of travel reimbursements. Travel reimbursements will not be made from travel charge card statements or tissue receipts. Each day’s expenses must be shown separately on the voucher.

For more information on travel reimbursements, see Accounts payable's "Travel" information page.