Business Travel Defined (modified 8/11/2010)

Business travel expenses are incurred while traveling on behalf of the University from one's office to a business destination and back. Travelers are required to submit their own travel reports even if traveling with other University faculty or staff members. Travelers may not include their travel expenses on the expense report of another individual. Travel reports must be submitted not later than 30 days after the trip is completed. Reimbursement for reports submitted after 30 days may be denied.

Travel dates normally include the day before the actual date of the business-related activity through the last day of the event. Additional travel days must be justified on a statement attached to the Travel Expense Reimbursement Report. When personal travel is combined with business travel, the University will reimburse expenses associated with the business portion of the trip only.

Local business and entertainment expenses incurred in the metropolitan Philadelphia area are considered local business expenses. Reimbursement of these expenses is made using the Local Business and Entertainment Expense Report.  Consult the Local Business and Entertainment Expense policy at http://www.drexel.edu/depts/compt/procedures/local20071.html .

Travel advances are funds given to a traveler prior to the trip for meals and other expenses incurred while traveling on University business as submitted on a Travel Advance and Prepaid Expense Report. Advances will not be granted for expenses that are prepaid (see below) or paid via the University Purchasing Card (“P-Card”). Travel advances are the responsibility of the traveler and are made available to University faculty and staff only. Travel advances cannot be issued to students and non-employees.

Advances must not exceed the amount of anticipated expenses and are limited to not more than $100 per travel day, not to exceed $500 per trip. Travel advances are issued only by check payable to the traveler not earlier than 7 business days prior to the trip. Amounts in excess of this limit or paid earlier than 7 business days before the trip require written approval from the operating unit Senior Vice President and Senior Vice President for Finance and Treasurer.  Travel advances are charged to account 3320 for domestic travel or 3330 for foreign travel.   

If a travel advance is issued, a Travel Expense Reimbursement Report must be submitted even if the trip is canceled.  This is the only manner in which a travel advance can be returned or cleared from the traveler's record.

Individuals receiving travel advances must submit a Travel Expense Reimbursement Report within 30 business days after the trip is completed. If the Travel Expense Reimbursement Report is not received within 30 business days, no further advances will be granted. Travel advances not accounted for within 60 business days after a trip will be deducted from the traveler's next paycheck.

Prepaid expenses are paid by the University directly to a vendor on behalf of the traveler before the trip is taken.  Prepaid expenses are issued via the Travel Advance and Prepaid Expense Request or by using the P-Card. All prepaid expenses must be supported by the appropriate documentation. Examples include airfare, hotel deposits and conference and registration fees.

Prepaid expenses paid to vendors by Accounts Payable are similar to travel advances in that they are the responsibility of the traveler. These expenses must be submitted on a Travel Expense Reimbursement Report even if the trip is canceled.  This is the only manner in which a prepaid expense can be cleared from the traveler's record. Travel advances will not be given to the traveler if the expenses are prepaid (see above).

Prepaid expenses paid by Accounts Payable must be accounted for within 30 business days after the trip on a Travel Expense Reimbursement Report. Prepaid expenses not accounted for within 60 business days after a trip will be deducted from the traveler's next paycheck.

CAUTION…Non-refundable tickets for a trip that is canceled must be used by the traveler for a business trip prior by the expiration date.  Non-refundable tickets cannot be transferred to another individual, but the departure date and destination can be changed for a fee.  It is the responsibility of the traveler’s supervisor to insure that the non-refundable ticket is used for business travel whenever a trip is canceled. 

Third party sponsored travel is University related business travel for which the traveler receives full or partial reimbursement from an outside source. Information on third party sponsored travel must be included on the Travel Advance and Prepaid Expense Report or on the Travel Expense Reimbursement Report. To allow time to receive the third party reimbursement, travelers have 60 business days after the trip to submit their Travel Expense Reimbursement Report. Travelers are reimbursed for their travel costs after deducting the payment from the third party.  All third party reimbursement checks are to be promptly deposited at a University Cashiers’ Office into account 3320 for domestic travel or 3330 for foreign travel.   Copies of all documents submitted to the outside organization must be attached to the Travel Expense Reimbursement Report.

The Accounts Payable Department in the Comptroller's Office is responsible for ensuring that all University business travel expenses are reimbursed in accordance with University policy. All travel reports must be submitted to the Accounts Payable Department, 3201 Arch Street, Suite 400, or dropped off in the 3201 Arch Street lobby mailbox.  Reimbursement is issued within three business days after entering into the Banner Financial System via direct deposit to employees who are enrolled in paycheck direct deposit.  All other travelers will be reimbursed by University check, mailed to their home address.   For additional information on business expense reimbursement via direct deposit, consult the resources at http://www.drexel.edu/depts/compt/ap/dd_expense_business.html  or contact the Accounts Payable Department at 215-895-2840 or email acctpay@drexel.edu.

University preferred travel vendors are available on the Procurement Office Travel Information site.  Travel arrangements made with any agency are the responsibility of the traveler and will be reimbursed only after the trip is completed. Travelers must report these expenses on the Travel Expense Reimbursement Report.

Travelers making travel arrangements through travel agencies, airlines or via the internet are responsible for paying the associated costs by using either a P-Card or their personal credit card.  Expenses charged to a personal credit card are reimbursed only when the trip is completed.  Reimbursement occurs within 7 to 10 business days after receipt of a fully completed Travel Expense Reimbursement Report.  All coupons and discounts will be deducted from the reimbursement.  Travel advances and prepayments will not be granted when expenses are charged to a personal credit card.   

After departure, any fee for a change to a non-refundable ticket must be charged to a P-Card or to a personal credit card.  These charges must be reported as prepaid via the P-Card or submitted for reimbursement on the Travel Expense Reimbursement Report.   

If an airline ticket ordered, a Travel Expense Reimbursement Report must be submitted even if the trip is canceled. This is the only manner in which an expense is cleared from the traveler's record.