Carnegie Mellon University

Travel FAQs

Yes, these are business expenses that are subject to departmental approval.  However, additional costs attributable to personal business are not reimbursable.

See the Early Departure or Late Return section of the Business and Travel Expense Policy for additional information.

Yes, this may be permissible based upon the department’s discretion.  Typical practice is for a non-refundable ticket to be used on the next business trip.

This is a departmental decision.  The standard university practice is to reimburse after the business trip is complete.  For cases where individuals are requesting reimbursement prior to the trip, the Department is responsible for tracking the information to ensure that the trip occurred.

See the Air Transportation section of the Business and Travel Expense Policy for additional information.

When renting a vehicle for university business, the employee will be reimbursed for the rental car cost and gas used on the trip; employees are not eligible for mileage reimbursement on top of a rental car expense.

Employees may be reimbursed at the IRS automobile reimbursement rate when using their personal vehicles for business requirements.  The IRS annually announces the standard mileage rates for business, medical, moving and charitable expenses. Please note that the standard mileage rate for moving/relocation expenses is different (and lower) than the business rate. See the current mileage rates

Please note - by using the mileage object code, the IRS standard mileage rate is automatically populated. 

See the Rental Cars and Automobile Travel sections of the Business and Travel Expense Policy for additional information.

Employees at international locations may be required to adhere to country specific mileage and should consult with their local business office with questions.

See the Automobile Travel sections of the Business and Travel Expense Policy for additional information.

The individual will be reimbursed for business phone calls.  In order to obtain reimbursement, the individual will need to provide a documented business purpose for each phone call.  Otherwise, the reimbursement will be considered taxable to the individual.

Refundable tickets can be returned for a refund to your credit or debit card. Non-refundable tickets cannot be returned for a refund; however, if you cannot use your ticket, you may be able to apply its value toward a future flight.

With either refundable or non-refundable tickets, the airline may charge additional fees for changes made to the ticket.

Refundable tickets are substantially more expensive than non-refundable tickets.  The University’s BTE states “Airfare booked should be the lowest priced coach ticket. Premium airfare may be appropriate subject to budget availability and approval.”  For these reasons, purchase of a refundable ticket are strongly discouraged and require DDFR approval if submitted for reimbursement.  Additionally, refundable ticket pricing cannot be utilized in performing cost comparisons with non-refundable tickets.  

No, employees can only be reimbursed for a hotel stay once the trip is complete, since adjustments to a hotel bill can occur during travel.  A final hotel receipt must be provided and attached in Oracle for proper reimbursement.