Paying for Travel: Tips for Prepaying and Managing Travel Expenses

Aircraft flying over an airport

Those who travel on UCI business are often required to pay for certain travel expenses prior to the trip. In order to avoid travelers having to bear these costs for an extended period, these expenses can be paid directly or reimbursed as soon as they are incurred. You can use the three options below -- processing a reimbursement in advance, using a Corporate Travel Card, or using a CTS Card -- to help manage travel expenses.

  • You Can Reimburse Travel Expenses Pre-Trip

One way to manage prepaid travel expenses is to process a reimbursement in advance of a trip, including airfare, registration fees, and payments to hotels requiring a deposit. All of these expenses can be included in a Travel Reimbursement document for a pre-trip reimbursement. 

  • Manage Your Travel Expenses with the UCI Corporate Travel Card

The UCI Corporate Travel Card program is also used to manage travel expenses. Often this provides sufficient time for people to pay for expenses ahead of time and to obtain reimbursement after the trip. If your UCI Corporate Travel becomes payable prior to your trip, you can keep your account current by submitting a Travel Reimbursement to pay off your Corporate Card.

  • Departments Can Pay for Airfare and Hotel with a CTS Ghost Card Account

If available, a CTS Card may be used by department administrative staff members for booking air and hotel only for others. To learn more, visit the CTS Card page.

Travel Advances for Foreign Travel

UCI only allows cash advances for foreign travel as per diem (lodging & meals) or, for athletic travel where a coach is traveling with a team and needs it for meals for athletes. All other travelers should apply for a Visa Corporate Travel Card. Cash advances are an option on the Corporate Travel Card if the traveler feels they need cash.

Advances can be made directly to the traveler, agencies, companies or other organizations, depending on the nature of the expenditure. To do so, a travel arranger will need to submit a KFS Travel Authorization (TA) e-document. Training on how to create TAs and other travel e-documents is available on UCLC.

Advances versus Reimbursements

The TA eDoc can only be used to encumber funds in an organization’s account or to process requests for travel cash advances for planned travel expenses. To reimburse a traveler before, during, or after a trip, a Travel Reimbursement (TR) must be used – with or without completing a TA eDoc first.

Deadline for Travel Advances 

Final accounting for all advances made for each trip must be made within 45 days of return by completing a Travel Reimbursement.  Read instructions on how to reconcile a TA with a Travel Reimbursement document.