14.11 Travel Funding

Last Revised Date
Tuesday, July 19, 2022 - 10:30 am
Purpose: To provide guidelines and procedures for travel for The University of Arizona employees, students and affiliates.
Policy Owner: Accounts Payable

Travel Advances | Funding Restrictions

Funding the Cost of Travel

The following pre-payment services are provided to minimize out of pocket expenses for employees on business travel.

  1. JPMorgan Corporate Card Program: The University of Arizona's JPMorgan Corporate Credit Card Program was implemented  to provide University employees with the benefits of a corporate travel card and to reduce departmental and administrative costs associated with administering cash advances. This is an individual liability, personal credit card, not a University PCard.  The program is no longer processing applications. However, current individual liability cardholders may continue to use their JPMorgan Chase Corporate Card relating to University travel. 
  2. Prepaying Expenses: Direct payments to vendors for known travel expenses, such as conference registration fees, lodging deposits, hotel prepayment or airline tickets, may be processed prior to the trip as indicated below:
    Expense Type Method Comments
    Conference Registration Fees Requisition 
    Send the Registration form to Purchasing as an attachment. Reference the Travel Authorization number on the Requisition.
    Purchasing Card Reconciler codes transaction with object  code 5520. Reference the Travel Authorization number
    Airline Tickets Disbursement Voucher OR Reference the Travel Authorization number on the Disbursement Voucher.
    Purchasing Card Reconciler codes transaction with object  code 6XXX. Reference the Travel Authorization number
    Hotel Expenses Disbursement Voucher Attach the Hotel Confirmation to the Notes/Attachment tab and email the Travel Office to initiate pre-payment.  See Prepaying for Hotel Expenses for the procedure.
    All other prepaid expenses Disbursement Voucher Reference the Travel Authorization number on the Disbursement Voucher. Do not claim reimbursement for prepaid expenses on your Travel Expense  Report.
    1. If prepayment is requested with a Disbursement Voucher,  a check or Travel PCard will be issued to the vendor. Please allow Accounts Payable at least seven business days to process the payment.
    2. When requesting reimbursement, do not include prepaid expenses in the Travel advance amount requested or in the calculation of reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses.

Requesting travel advances

  1. Travel advances may only be issued to active University employees or current graduate students whose travel is funded with gift, designated or sponsored projects accounts.
  2. Advances will be issued to the traveler, before the start of trip, upon receipt of an approved Travel Authorization. The travel advance request must have original signatures and be forwarded to Accounts Payable to initiate the advance. Faxes and copies cannot be accepted.
    1. Travel advance requests must be requested prior to the trip to cover not more than 100% of the total cost of the trip less any prepaid expenses or expenses paid directly to a vendor. Travel advances will be issued no more than seven days prior to the start of the trip.  Travel advance requests must be received in Accounts Payable at least seven days before the date required. 
    2. To request a Travel advance, complete a Disbursement Voucher. Departments have the option to pre-encumber the advance using a Pre-Encumbrance document.
    3. Print the Disbursement Voucher coversheet and send it, along with the signed Travel Authorization form, to Accounts Payable.
    4. Travel advances must be settled within 10 business days after the completion of the trip in order to comply with  Travel Policy 14.12, Accountable Plan. Travel advances not settled within 30 days after the completion of the trip will be collected as a deduction from an employee's salary, wages or travel expense reimbursement.
    5. If the traveler is a graduate student who defaults on repayment of a travel advance and the travel is funded by gift and designated accounts, the amount of the advance will be charged directly to the account. If the graduate student's travel is funded by a sponsored projects account, the Office of the Vice President for Research and Graduate studies will arrange a payback agreement with the appropriate dean and department head.
    6. If a Travel advance is not settled and the University cannot get reimbursed for the advance through payroll deduction because the traveler is no longer, or never was, an employee, the amount of the advance will be considered reportable income to the traveler, will be 1099 reportable to the IRS, and a 1099 will be issued to the traveler.
    7. Travel advances will not be issued:
      1. To travelers who have outstanding advances greater than 10 days.
      2. To travelers owing money on a previously submitted Travel Expense Report.
      3. For amounts less than $250.
    8. Advances are available for pick up on the date requested at the following pick up location. A photo ID such as CatCard, or State-issued drivers license is required when picking up an advance check. The Travel advance may also be directly deposited into the employee's primary bank account identified in UAccess Employee via ACH Deposit.

      Main Campus
      Financial Services Operations Office 
      Customer Service Room 402
      University Services Building

Funding restrictions

  1. Sponsored project accounts:
    1. Travel on sponsored project funds follow University travel policies, unless the grant terms provide additional criteria. See the Research Gateway for more information on sponsored projects regulations.
    2. International travel on sponsored project accounts is restricted by the terms of the contract, grant or sponsor.
  2. State Accounts: Foreign travel on State accounts is limited to reasonable and business-related expenditures incurred for conducting business as approved for the State account in the budgetary process. For example, foreign travel for the purpose of presenting a research paper would not be appropriate on a State instructional account, but may be appropriate on a State research account.
  3. If you have any questions regarding account restrictions, contact your fund accountant.
  4. Travel object codes 6140, 6240 and 6340 can only be used on authorized university employee travel except when travel by non-employees is on a grant and it requires that the travel object codes be used.