Allowable & Disallowable Expenses

 

The primary purpose of expense documentation is to show that the trip was taken and the expenses listed were incurred.  The University requires “adequate documentation” to substantiate reimbursement to the Traveler.

Therefore,

  • Airline itinerary is required. 
  • An original receipt is required for all expenses being claimed. (see “Allowable” column below). 
  • Receipts must indicate payment method (cash or credit card) and be itemized where possible to simplify the reimbursement process.
  • The Traveler must approve the travel document to certify that the trip was taken and all expenses were incurred. The Traveler is liable for any false claims. 
  • Note: It is at the discretion of the PI/Program Manager and Fiscal Officer to approve price reasonableness.  Documentation for price reasonableness is to be kept in department files.

   

Expenditures

Allowable

Disallowable

Comments

Airfare

(including discount coupons, eTickets),

Itinerary

X

 

·     Most economical and direct route.

 

·     May be purchased via normal procurement procedures (e.g. UH Purchasing Card, Purchase Order) or via the Traveler’s personal credit card.  If the Traveler chooses to pay with his/her credit card, the earliest reimbursement is via the Travel Advance which is 10 working days prior to departure.

 

·     Any coupons and discounts received on official business must be given to the University.

 

Additional note on documentation/receipts:

·     Price reasonableness – Indirect or interrupted itineraries and travel extended to save costs.

 

·     Use of business or first class services may be authorized under the following circumstances:

  1. Business or first class services are the only services offered.
  2. Business or first class services are necessary to reasonably accommodate a disability or medical condition.

 

·     If payment made via personal credit card, receipt must indicate it was paid by the Traveler. 

 

·     Boarding passes or copies of eTickets MAY be helpful for unanticipated flight changes that may affect the Per Diem or M&IE allowance.

 

 

Automobile Rental

X

 

·     For compact or sub-compact vehicles, and only where it is impractical to obtain State owned vehicles or private vehicles on mileage basis.

 

Additional note on documentation/receipts:

·     Justification should be obtained for requesting larger vehicles, but this is to be retained by the department as it is not required by Disbursing.

 

·     Car rental companies provide a receipt on the spot or will mail, email, or fax a receipt. 

 

Automobile Rental, Insurance Premiums, Intra-State

 

X

·     The University will generally pay the car rental company for damages incurred on official business, therefore insurance is not allowed.

Automobile Rental, Out-of-State (Restricted to Collision Damage Waiver)

X

 

·     The Collision Damage Waiver is the only Out-of-State car rental insurance allowed.

Baggage,

Excess Charges or Mandatory Handling Charge

X

 

·     For official business. 

 

·     One checked bag, based on the airline’s standard weight and linear measurements.  Any additional fees (e.g. second bag, special items, oversized and overweight baggage) are the responsibility of the traveler unless an appropriate justification is provided.

 

·     Airlines will provide a receipt noting baggage charges. 

 

·     Baggage handling tips are not allowed.

 

Bumping, Additional Per Diem

X

 

·     Per diem cost incurred due to bumping may be claimed if the delay is not the fault of the Traveler. 

 

·     All compensation the Traveler receives due to bumping must be given to the University.

 

Bus Fares

X

 

·     For official business only. 

Certificates (Birth, Health, Identification)

X

 

·     For official business only, as required for approved travel.

Conference Fees

X

 

·     May be purchased through normal procurement procedures (e.g. UH Pcard, Purchase Order) or via the Traveler’s personal credit card.  If the Traveler chooses to pay with his/her credit card, the earliest reimbursement is via the Travel Advance which is 10 working days prior to departure.

 

·     Provide any relevant pages of the conference brochures showing conference dates, times, registration, costs, etc.

 

Currency Exchange Fees

X

 

·     Limited to the monetary value of approved Per Diem, Lodging, M&IE and allowable expenses. 

Fax

X

 

·     For official business only.

Gifts

 

X

·     Specifically disallowed.

Expenditures

Allowable

Disallowable

Comments

Hotel (see Lodging)

X

 

·     See Lodging.

Inoculations

X

 

·     For official business only. 

 

·     Only the employee portion of the inoculation bill is reimbursable.  The portion of the bill covered by medical insurance and/or the cost of medical insurance itself is not reimbursable.

Laundry

 

X

·     Included in the Per Diem or M&IE (meals & incidental expenses) allowance, cannot be claimed separately.

Lodging

(including Excess Lodging)

X

 

·     For bargaining units 01, 02, 03, 04, 09, 10, and 63, lodging may be included in the Per Diem allowance or listed separately, for allowable travel time. 

 

·     If Lodging is paid for by the University, or by another entity the Traveler is only allowed M&IE. 

 

·     Excess Lodging shall be calculated as total Lodging separate from the M&IE allowance. 

 

Additional note on documentation/receipts:

·     Typically the hotel where the conference/seminar is being held is the most economical/feasible as special rates are given to attendees.  In this case, 2 quotes are not required. 

 

·     If the Traveler is staying in a hotel where the conference is not being held, 2 quotes (traveler's lodging of choice plus one additional quote) are helpful to demonstrate price reasonableness. 

 

·     Hotels provide a paper receipt or will mail/fax it if the Traveler is in a rush or uses express checkout. 

 

·     Note:  Additional expenses on the hotel receipt such as for room service must be subtracted out.  

 

Meals, M&IE

(Meals and Incidental Expenses)

 

X

 

·     Included in the Per Diem or M&IE allowance, for allowable travel time.

 

·     M&IE rates are based on Collective Bargaining Unit contract or the Federal Allowable Rate (FAR).

 

·     When conference optional meals are selected by the Traveler, M&IE is reduced by set rates to prevent double payment of meals, unless exemptions are provided in the collective bargaining unit contracts.  Meal reductions are typically as follows:  

Breakfast: subtract .20 day M&IE

Lunch: subtract .30 day of M&IE

Dinner: subtract .50 day of M&IE

 

Example: if 3 dinners were paid for by the conference, and it's optional, M&IE would be reduced by 1.50 days (3 x .50 = 1.50 M&IE days) 

 

Example 2: if breakfast is included in with the hotel cost, M&IE would be reduced by .20 day. 

 

 

·     If the Traveler spends less than the daily M&IE allowance, the remainder is his/hers to keep.  If the Traveler exceeds the M&IE allowance, it is at his/her own expense. 

 

·     Travelers are given Per Diem or an M&IE allowance for the allowable travel time and receipts for meals are not required. 

 

Mileage, Automobile

X

 

·     While on allowable travel time, and/or for mileage outside of what the Traveler would normally incur traveling to/from work. 

 

Example 1: Traveler taking or returning from a flight outside of normal business hours, Traveler can claim miles to/from the airport. 

 

Example 2: Traveler taking or returning from a flight during normal business hours, Traveler can claim miles over and beyond what he/she normally travels to/from work.  Meaning if the Traveler normally travels 20 miles to get to work and must travel 30 miles to get to the airport, he/she can claim the extra 10 miles.  If the Traveler normally travels 20 miles to get to work and only travels 5 miles to get to the airport, he/she cannot claim mileage. 

 

·     DISB-33 form required

 

Parking Fees

X

 

·     While on allowable travel time.

 

·     May include parking fees for vehicles left in the airport parking lot during travel time.

 

Passport, Visa

X

 

·     For official business only.

Expenditures

Allowable

Disallowable

Comments

Per Diem Allowance

X

 

·     For allowable travel time.  Includes Lodging and M&IE (meals & incidental expenses).

 

Porterage Fees

 

X

·     Included in the Per Diem or M&IE (meals & incidental expenses) allowance, cannot be claimed separately.

Registration Fee

X

 

·     May be purchased through normal procurement procedures (e.g. UH Pcard, Purchase Order) or via the Traveler’s personal credit card.  If the Traveler chooses to pay with his/her credit card, the earliest reimbursement is via the Travel Advance which is 10 working days prior to departure.

 

Taxi Fares

X

 

·     For official business only. 

 

·     Allowed if other more economical means of transportation are not available or obtainable (buses/shuttles, State-owned vehicles, private automobiles on a mileage basis).

 

·     Taxis should be shared whenever possible.

 

Telephone Fees

X

 

·     For official business only.

Tips

 

X

·     Specifically disallowed.

Traffic Fines, Towing Charges

 

X

·     Specifically disallowed.

Transportation

X

 

·     By the most economical and direct means consistent with the time and urgency of the trip.

 

·     If vacation or leave without pay is taken during business travel, the allowance for transportation will be for the most direct route.

Trans-Ocean Travel by Surface Ship

 

X

·     Specifically disallowed.

Traveler’s Checks Fees

X

 

·     Limited to the monetary value of approved Per Diem, Lodging, M&IE and allowable expenses.

Vehicles – Direct Expenses

 

X

·     Specifically disallowed, except for government vehicles in need of immediate repair.

Visa, Passport

X

 

·     For official business only.