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Travel Guidelines

**Travel reimbursement requests must be submitted to the Engineering Purchasing Reimbursements Office for processing within 30 days from the end of the trip**

Required Documentation:

Click here for Department Travel Form

Original receipts that show the method of payment are required for the following:

  • Airfare: original passenger receipt (e-ticket email confirmation acceptable) and document showing the airline ticket number (13-digit number; exceptions are Jet Blue and Virgin Airlines)
  • Lodging: original itemized checkout statement showing form of payment (Lodging: New cap of $275 per night will take effect on October 15, 2017.).
  • Car Rental: original receipt showing rental contract number and mileage in and out
  • Registration Fee: conference agenda, itemized receipt, or other supporting documentation including conference schedule
  • Meals: log or receipts (for domestic travel, original receipts required if requesting at or near the $74 max routinely each day (effective on October 15, 2017 the max will become $62 instead of $74)
  • Local/Non-Local Transportation (taxi, shuttles, etc.): log or receipts over $75
  • Miscellaneous: parking, tips, internet, etc.

Whether you are submitting an entertainment reimbursement (ENT), travel reimbursement (TR), or disbursement voucher (DV), you will need to send your supporting documentation.  Click here for a reference guide to required supporting documents.  

Connexxus--The University of California Travel Program:

Connexxus is your web portal for arranging business-relatged travel for faculty, staff and host guests of UC Irvine. By using Connexxus, you can choose to make your travel arrangements online of through a travel agent. After booking your travel, your trip is automatically registered with the UC Travel Insurance Program. Find out more about the Connexxus by going to the Zot Portal/Finances/Travelers/Connexxus Travel Program

Internet Travel Packages are NOT Allowed if breakdown of charges is not included (e.g., Expedia, Travelocity, etc.):

Reimbursement of these packages is not allowed unless they provide a breakdown of the charges. If you are interested in obtaining a travel package, but are not sure if the vendor will provide a breakdown of the expenses, inquire with the vendor prior to purchase. You may need to call the vendor to obtain this information.

Fly America Act and Open Skies policies on using US Flag carriers for foreign travel when using Federal contract/grant funds:

Federal Travel Regulations require that U.S. carriers must be used for travel that is to be reimbursed from federal grants and contracts. This policy is called the Fly America Act. Allowable exceptions are noted below.

  1. When the use of U.S. carrier service would extend travel time (including delay at origin) by 24 hours or more.
  2. When the costs of transportation are reimbursed in full by a third party, such as a foreign government or an international agency.
  3. When U.S. carriers do not offer nonstop or direct service between origin and destination. However, a U.S. carrier must be used on every portion of the route where it provides service unless, when compared to using a foreign air carrier, such use would:
    1. Increase the number of aircraft changes outside the United States by two or more.
    2. Extend travel time by at least six hours or more.
    3. Require a connecting time of four hours or more at an overseas interchange point.
  4. When an Open Skies agreement is in place, use of a foreign carrier is allowed when transportation is between the U.S. and any point in the agreement member state or between two points outside the U.S. provided that:
    1. Funding is not provided by the Secretary of Defense or the Secretary of a military department.

Note: When one or more of the above circumstances apply, an explanation indicating the appropriate exception must be provided along with the submission of the department travel form.

Open Skies Agreements criteria may also serve as exceptions to the Fly America Act. More information on Open Skies Agreements can be found here.  A list of countries the U.S. has Open Skies agreements with is available at the U.S. State Department website. 

List of American Flag Carrier Airlines:

For International Destinations

These U.S. carriers and their foreign code share partners travel to major cities in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia and South America:

  • Alaska Airlines (AS)
  • American Airlines (AA)
  • Continental Airlines (CO)
  • Northwest Airlines (NW)
  • United Airlines (UA)
  • US Airways (US)
  • Delta Airlines (DL)
    • (Delta also has flights to Polynesia, check availability)

All airlines are obligated to inform the traveler of code share flights. Additional information on airline code share alliances is available on:

Reminder – A code share flight must be documented with the U.S. flag carrier airline code.

For Domestic Travel and Travel to Canada

  • Airtran Airways (FL)
  • Alaska Airlines (AS)
  • America West Airlines (HP)
  • American Airlines (AA)
  • American Trans Air (TZ)
  • Continental Airlines (CO)
  • Delta Airlines (DL)
  • Frontier Airlines (F9)
  • Hawaiian Airlines (HA)
  • Jet Blue (B6)
  • Midwest Express (YX)
  • Northwest Airlines (NW)
  • Southwest Airlines (WN)
  • Spirit Airlines (NK)
  • United Airlines (UA)
  • US Airways (US)
  • Virgin America (VX)

Note: *Air Canada is NOT a U.S. flag air carrier*.

Renting Automobiles for University Business Travel

Use Connexxus the UC managed travel program to make your car rental reservation with UC discounted rates.

UC has negotiated rates with Hertz, Enterprise, National, Dollar and Thrifty. The UC rates available through these car rental agencies are the same whether booking through BCD Travel or SWABIZ.

For complete details about car rentals for university business travel, please visit UCI's Account & Fiscal services website at: http://www.accounting.uci.edu/travel/book/renting.html

Rental Car Insurance:

When a vehicle is rented from one of the rental car companies with UC contracts, the traveler should decline the loss damage waiver (LDW), collision damage waiver (CDW), and the supplemental liability insurance (SLI) as these are included in the basic UC agreement rate with the above agencies.

Traveler is responsible for obtaining liability insurance when renting a vehicle from a company other than the ones listed.

Purchase of rental car insurance will not be reimbursed unless:

  • None of the preferred rental car agencies were available at the location the rental car was needed.
  • If the type of travel requires a vehicle that is not covered under an agreement, e.g. some vans, trucks and SUVs, then collision damage coverage (CDC) may be purchased and is considered a reimbursable expense.


Rental Car Upgrade Restrictions:

  • Only the cost of a Compact or Economy car will be reimbursed unless a larger car is required for the business purpose of the trip or a larger car is more economical due to the number of travelers
    • Free upgrades may be accepted, or the additional cost may be paid by the traveler if they choose to upgrade
  • Additional upgrades such as GPS are not reimbursable expenses.

Lodging for UCI guests:

If you need to find lodging for visitors to the University several local hotels offer special negotiated University rates. You may find a list of Orange County hotels with these agreements through this link - Hotels.

Maximum Amounts Allowed for Domestic Travel:

Lodging: New cap of $275 per night will take effect on October 15, 2017.   

Click here for additional details about Lodging Guidelines

  • When booking lodging, use Connexxus to take advantage of UC-negotiated rates and potentially other benefits like later checkout times or free upgrades.
  • There is currently no set daily maximum for lodging (new cap of $275 per night will take effect on Oct. 15), but you should only rent a single room and the cost must be reasonable for the location and nature of the trip.
  • It is customary to stay at the hotel where the conference is being held, but consider alternative hotels for your conference stay that could save the University money and give you more flexibility in your plans.
  • You won't be reimbursed for in-room charges such as gym or movie fees.
  • An expense for lodging within the vicinity of your home or headquarters is generally not eligible for reimbursement unless an early start time is combined with a distance greater than 40 miles from the headquarters or home, whichever is closest.

Click here for additional details about Meals & Incidentals:

  • $74.00 daily maximum for trips longer than 24 hours.  The Meal & Incidental Expenses Meal Cap Rate will change to $62 on Oct. 15, 2017.
  • These rates, however, should not be treated as a flat per diem rates. The traveler should only request reimbursement for actual amounts spent, and a meal log should be provided. Meal receipts are required when requesting at or near the $74 max routinely each day.

Per Diem for Foreign Travel:

Rates may be obtained via the web at the U.S. Department of State website: https://aoprals.state.gov/content.asp?content_id=184&menu_id=78.

Currency Conversion Resource:

Business-related Entertainment/Meals:

A business meal differs from a Per Diem meal in that the traveler is having a business meeting during the meal and is serving as host by paying for the food/beverages of other attendees. Such meetings must have a business purpose in accordance with the UC Policy, BUS-79, on Expenditures for Business Meetings, Entertainment, and Other Occasions. Reimbursement requires submission of a list of attendees, an itemized receipt, and statement of business purpose. University policy allows such meals to be reimbursed at entertainment rates as follows:

Entertainment Allowable (Amounts include tax, gratuity and any applicable service charges):

  • Breakfast: $27 per person
  • Lunch: $47 per person
  • Dinner: $81 per person
  • Refreshments: $19 per person

Mileage:

When private vehicles are used on Official University Business, the traveler is required to have adequate liability insurance coverage in order to be reimbursed for Private Car Mileage.

It is not necessary to provide proof of said insurance, but the traveler's insurance must meet University standards.

Please refer to Vehicle Use & Insurance at the University of California and to UC Business & Finance Bulletin Page 20, Section D for further information.

University of California Traveler Insurance Coverage:

The university has arranged for employees and students traveling on official university business to be covered for a wide variety of accidents and incidents while away from the campus or primary workplace.

For complete details about this insurance, please visit UCOP's Traveler Insurance website at: http://www.ucop.edu/risk-services/loss-prevention-control/travel-assistance/

UCI Resources:

http://accounting.uci.edu/travel/index.html It is encouraged that department faculty and lab personnel who will be traveling be familiar with this website.