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Travel Approver Training. The Ohio State University Revised January 2007. The “What” of Travel Approval. Business travel requires approval at two points in the process: Order (request) Reimbursement Approvers must have the willingness and authority to say “no”

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travel approver training

Travel Approver Training

The Ohio State University

Revised January 2007

the what of travel approval
The “What” of Travel Approval
  • Business travel requires approval at two points in the process:
    • Order (request)
    • Reimbursement
  • Approvers must have the willingness and authority to say “no”
  • Any changes to the travel order or reimbursement are initiated by the corresponding approver, and communicated to the Travel Office
approving the travel order4
Approving the Travel Order
  • What are you looking for?
    • Documented business purpose
    • Estimated expenses are reasonable and necessary
    • Reasonable / allowable prepayments through the Travel Office
      • Prepaid Transportation (airfare, rail, Motor Pool)
      • Prepaid Registration Fees
      • Travel Cash Advances
    • Travel Cards and Purchasing Card may be used – not included in Travel Office Prepayment
approving the travel order5
Approving the Travel Order
  • Prepaid Transportation
    • Must use a designated agency for airfare and rail
      • Lowest available airfare to reasonably meet business travel requirements
      • Rail and/or automobile expensescannot exceed the cost of the least expensive airfare
      • Business class may be purchased for international flights (flight time exceeds 5 consecutive hours)
      • Sorry, no first-class
    • 30-day advance booking generally avoids premium airfare pricing
approving the travel order6
Approving the Travel Order
  • Prepaid Registration Fees
    • Conference fees, business-related banquets or meals
    • No entertainment activities
approving the travel order7
Approving the Travel Order
  • Travel Cash Advances
    • Authorized for situations causing undue financial hardship
      • OSU Students traveling on behalf of University
      • OSU Faculty / Staff leading a group of OSU Students
      • OSU Faculty, Staff, or Students traveling internationally in excess of one calendar month
    • System enforces maximum allowable advance
approving the travel reimbursement9
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • What are you looking for?
    • Compliance with Travel policies
    • Compliance with Travel policies
    • Compliance with Travel policies
      • Necessary documentation is attached
      • Expenditures are reasonable and necessary
      • Expenses are consistent with business purpose
      • Traveler has disclosed Third-Party or OSURF payments
approving the travel reimbursement10
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • Travelers should incur the lowest reasonable travel expenses and exercise care to avoid impropriety or appearance of impropriety
  • If circumstance is not specifically covered in Travel Policy, the most conservative course of action should be adopted
  • Frequent flyer miles are acceptable if used for business travel
  • Other travel-related incentives are prohibited
approving the travel reimbursement11
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • Approvers need an understanding of Travel Policies
  • Expenses should be reasonable in light of less expensive alternatives
  • Highlight the policies for the most common expenditures
approving the travel reimbursement12
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • Airfare and Rail
      • Lowest available airfare to reasonably meet business travel requirements
      • Rail and/or automobile expenses cannot exceed the cost of the least expensive airfare
      • Business class may be purchased for international flights (flight time exceeds 5 consecutive hours)
      • Sorry, no first-class
    • Documentation must show method of payment and indicate that payment was made
approving the travel reimbursement13
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • Rental Car
    • Documentation required if the University’s contract with National or AVIS is not used
    • Only CDW and LDW insurance reimbursed for rentals from non-contracted agencies
    • Rental car expenses cannot be greater than the least expensive airfare
  • Personal Vehicle (Mileage Reimbursement)
    • System calculates reimbursement amount based on applicable Federal rate
    • Personal car expenses cannot be greater than the least expensive airfare
approving the travel reimbursement14
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • Registration Fees
    • Payment documentation must be present
    • Ancillary expenses (e.g. spouse programs, entertainment) cannot be reimbursed
approving the travel reimbursement15
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • Hotel
    • Reasonable, single occupancy or standard business / conference room rates and associated taxes
    • Receipts must contain method of payment and indicate that payment was made
approving the travel reimbursement16
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • Per Diem
    • Calculated automatically by the Travel System
    • Federal per diem rates are applied; receipts not required
    • Meals otherwise provided (e.g. conference, airline, business meals, hotel) must be deducted from per diem
  • Actual Meal Cost in lieu of Per Diem
    • Itemized receipts are required
    • Reimbursement amount must not exceed federal per diem rate
  • Business Meals are not reimbursed via Travel System
    • Must be reimbursed via the Payment Request Online System (PROS)
approving the travel reimbursement17
Approving the Travel Reimbursement
  • “Other” Incidentals
    • Travel Policy lists reimbursable incidental business expenses and required documentation
  • Non-Reimbursable Expenses
    • Travel Policy lists expenses that the University will not reimburse – includes but not limited to…
      • Airline club memberships, upgrades, house-sitting, commuting between home and campus, evening or formal wear expenses, costs incurred by Traveler’s failure to cancel reservations in a timely manner, Travel accident insurance premiums