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Travel Policy and Resources

The purpose of the Travel policy is to provide guidance to individuals who are traveling on behalf of the University and to ensure the appropriate use of University resources to further the University’s mission of teaching, research, scholarship and service.

Related policies, such as the Purchasing Card policy and the Business Meals and Entertainment policy should be read in conjunction with the Travel policy.

These policies do not specifically apply to expenses covered under other policies or guidelines, such as relocation, interviewees, purchases of services or equipment, or meetings and customer events.

The sections below are sections within the Travel policy; however, not all sections of the policy are listed here.  It is recommended that travelers review the Travel policy in its entirety before making travel arrangements.

Reimbursements for travel and non-travel expenses are processed through the Chrome River travel and expense management system.

 

Allowable and Non-Allowable Expenses

Many employees are permitted to expend University funds.  Employees initiating the expenditure of University funds are referred to as Fiscal Initiators. All Fiscal Initiators are responsible for following related University policies, for using University funds prudently and only for a legitimate business purpose. For examples of allowable and non-allowable expenses, please see the lists below.

Allowable Expenses (Travel, Meals, and Entertainment) Guide

Non-Allowable Expenses Guide

Business Meals and Entertainment

Guidance on business meals and entertainment is provided in the Business Meals and Entertainment policy, rather than the Travel policy.

The purpose of the Business Meals and Entertainment policy is to provide guidance to individuals who are entertaining or incurring meal expenses on behalf of the University and to ensure the appropriate use of University resources to further the University’s mission of teaching, research, scholarship and service.  Additionally, the policy is designed to ensure the University’s compliance with Federal tax law and third-party sponsoring agency regulations, as applicable.

The policy provides guidance on business meals, departmental events and functions, and food or refreshments for University events.

The policy should be reviewed prior to incurring these types of expenses.

Combining Business and Personal Travel

When business travel is extended for personal reasons, the employee is responsible for any expenses incurred as part of their personal travel, including but not limited to rental cars, lodging, meals, tips, entertainment, etc. 

Review the Travel policy for more information.

Family Travel (Spousal/Partner Travel)

The University will not pay nor reimburse for the travel expenses of family members of a student or family members of a University guest.

Expenses attributable to an employee’s family member(s) or personal guests will not be paid for by or reimbursed by the University except in very limited circumstances, preapproved by the EVP/COO.

 

Group Travel

The University has contracted with several charter bus companies.  Visit the Transportation website for information about charter buses and the contracted charter buses.

 

International Travel

Individuals who are traveling internationally for University business, or using University or sponsored research funding, must register their travel itinerary with the University’s international travel registry in advance of their travel: http://studyabroad.richmond.edu/?go=TravelRegistry . International travel guidelines are generally the same as domestic travel; however, there are a few differences.

Additional information about international travel is provided in the Travel policy.

 

Lodging

Individuals traveling on University business have several lodging options. Guidance on these options is provided in the Travel policy and  includes guidance on alternative lodging options, such as staying with family or friends, Airbnb, and Vacation Rental by Owner (VRBO).  Review the policy prior to making your lodging reservations.

The University is exempt from lodging tax in Florida, Tennessee, Maryland, and New York City (not New York state).  Contact Jerry Robinson if you need a tax-exempt form for University business travel.

The University has recommended hotels for both local and out of state travel:


Making Travel Arrangements

Travelers are encouraged to make travel arrangements as far in advance as practical.  Advance planning is key to obtaining the lowest airfares and securing first choice flight times and room accommodations. 

Guidance on making travel arrangements maybe found in the Travel policy.

 

Meals While Traveling on University Business

The University will reimburse or pay for reasonable meal expenses incurred while traveling away from home or entertaining while on University business.  Travelers should use good judgement when spending University funds for meals while traveling.

Guidance on travel meals are provided in the Travel policy and includes information about meal per diems, meal receipts, and meals purchased on a University-owned credit card (PCard).  Group meals is also addressed in the policy.

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs for Meals Per Diem Policy

Paying for Travel Expenses

Travelers have several options available for payment of University business-related travel expenses.  These options include University-owned credit cards (Pcards) or reimbursement.  Travelers should review the Travel policy for guidance on the specific option.

Reimbursements for travel and non-travel expenses are processed through the Chrome River travel and expense management system.

 

Transportation

Individuals or groups traveling on University business may choose to travel by air, train, or ground.  Specific guidance on each of these options is covered in the Travel policy, which also addresses ridesharing options, insurance coverage, and specific restrictions.

Automobile Rentals

For automobile rentals, University employees may utilize consortium agreements with the vendors listed below.  Review the pricing on these agreements and use the most advantageous pricing available either through the consortium or directly with the rental agency.

Group Transportation

For group transportation, the University has several contracts with qualified charter bus services that meet the University’s requirements.

Relocation

For householding moving and relocation services, please visit relocation services.

Travel Advances

The University provides University-owned credit cards which may be used for most travel expenses; therefore, travel advances are generally not necessary and will be issued in very limited circumstances.

Review the Travel policy for guidance on when advances are allowed.  Requests for travel advances are processed through the Chrome River travel and expense management system.

 

Travel Pre-Approval

Departments may require employees to submit a pre-approval request prior to making travel arrangements.  It is the supervisor’s responsibility to let the traveler know if pre-approval is required.  Employees request pre-approval through the Chrome River travel and expense management system.

Individuals who are traveling internationally for University business or using University or sponsored research funding must register their travel itinerary with the University’s international travel registry in advance of their travel: http://studyabroad.richmond.edu/?go=TravelRegistry .