Coronavirus Information from Administration & Finance

To assist in this new remote working and learning environment. The latest information regarding Procure to Pay functions (Procurement, Payment and Distribution Services)

2020-2021 University Travel Guidelines

This information is specific to travel impacted as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19). As the situation remains very dynamic, please check back for updates.

Cal Poly has suspended all non-essential international and domestic travel for all faculty, staff, students and its auxiliary organizations, including Cal Poly Corporation, Associated Students Inc. and Cal Poly Foundation through June 30, 2021.

Authority has been given to the university president to approve exceptions to the travel suspension when there are compelling reasons that support the academic and co-curricular mission of the campus ("essential travel"). All travel must be approved prior to booking a trip or committing funds.

All international travel and study abroad requests must start with the International Center.

IMPORTANT NOTE: For information on Concur and training, please email Travel Analyst, Stephanie Albright at polytravel@calpoly.edu in Strategic Business Services.

Domestic Travel Request Process Steps for Travel Through June 30, 2021

  1. Select proper Request Form depending on type of travel (see table)
  2. Fill out proper Request Form, all campus development or advancement staff must get proper signatures on Request Form before submitting for approval
  3. Attach Request Form to the proper format (Concur Request or 1A form) and submit for approval
  4. Obtain proper approvals:
    1. Concur Request with attached Request Form must be approved by:
      1. Cost Object Approver
      2. Department Head or Chair/ Manager or Supervisor
      3. Dean/ AVP
      4. Provost/ VP
      5. President
    2. “1A” form with attached Request Form must be approved by:
      1. Department Head or Chair/ Manager or Supervisor
      2. Dean/ AVP
      3. Provost/ VP
      4. President
  5. Traveler should ensure all approvers have approved travel request as outlined above. Travel request or travel expense report/claim may be denied if proper approvals were not obtained prior to trip.

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Travel Process Summary

Individual Travel

(when traveling as an individual and responsible for own travel expenses)

Traveler(s) Type Use Request Form for Submit with: Additional Instructions
Faculty Faculty and Staff Concur Request N/A
Staff Faculty and Staff Concur Request N/A
Auxilliary Staff Faculty and Staff "1A" Form N/A
Student Student and Group "1A" Form N/A

Group Travel

(when traveling with multiple people, may)

Traveler(s) Type Use Request Form for Submit with: Additional Instructions
Faculty or Staff as leader, only paying for self Student and Group Concur Request Must list all students or group travelers & have each traveler sign Acknowledgment of Risk
Faculty or Staff as leader, paying on behalf of others Student and Group "1A" form Must list all students or group travelers & have each traveler sign Acknowledgment of Risk
Student as group traveler (not leader) N/A Students will not submit 1A form, Not submitting Request Form, but is required to sign Acknowledgment of Risk that leader is submitting

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What is Considered Essential Domestic Travel?

Domestic travel may be deemed “essential” only when the travel demonstrably and significantly advances one or more of the following for:

Faculty, Staff, Researchers, and Grad students

  • Meet contractual obligations committed prior to COVID-19
  • Job required training/ certification/ professional development (e.g. tenure) that must be in person and cannot be postponed
  • University development activity that must be in person and cannot be postponed
  • University recruitment activity that must be in person and cannot be postponed
  • Preserve the safety of a research subject and which is not possible to be postponed
  • Preserve the result of a research activity and which is not possible to be postponed
  • Preserve continuity of grant funding or completion of grant required activities
  • Accompanying students on approved essential travel
  • Accreditation activity that must be in person and cannot be postponed
  • Clinical practice that must be in person and cannot be postponed
  • Educational requirement for student’s academic progress, degree completion or graduation, activity must be in person and cannot be postponed
  • Essential agriculture enterprise business operations
  • Approved professional leave, such as, but not limited to sabbatical or DIPs

Students

  • Continuity toward academic progress, degree completion, or graduation.
  • Does not include international group travel or study abroad. All international travel by faculty, staff, student, groups, or study abroad must start at the Cal Poly International Center

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Reimbursement of Expenses Related to Cancelled Travel

Cancelled or Suspended travel claims/ expense reports should be submitted via email to SBS-Payment@calpoly.edu

Requirements to submit cancelled travel claims/expense reports:

  • Appropriate COV19 Travel Claim Form (paper) or Expense Report (Concur)
  • All Receipts, regardless of value
  • Documentation of refund request & response
  • Itinerary (for international travel)

Reimbursement of Employee/Student-Incurred Expenses

Note: The below sections apply to expenses incurred by or on behalf of employees (faculty and staff) and students for university sponsored travel.

  • The travel reimbursement process via a COV19 Travel Claim Form will be used to claim costs incurred for cancelled travel including any applicable cancellation/change fees.
  • Travelers must make every effort to claim a refund. Many airlines, hotels and car rental companies are refunding or crediting individuals who personally prepaid these transactions.
  • Travelers should collect and maintain documentation about the refund/credit request and outcome.
  • Refund requests that were denied by the travel partner are eligible for reimbursement. These reimbursement requests will require supporting documentation showing the request for refund was denied. Please submit a Travel Claim Form to Payment Services.
  • Refunds granted in the form of a voucher for later use will be treated as a travel advance and tracked by the department. The traveler may immediately submit a travel reimbursement claim for the expense. If the travel advance (airline voucher, etc.) is not applied to university-related business travel before it expires, the department will be report the amount to Payroll as income subject to payroll tax withholding per IRS regulations.
  • For students on a CSU IP program, as opposed to a campus program, the Chancellor’s Office (CO) will process the reimbursement per their guidelines. CSU IP students should refer to csuip@calstate.edu for assistance.

For Expenses Incurred by the Department via direct payment (Concur Travel Card, Travel Card, Procard, Direct Bill, etc.)

  • Travelers/departments should make every effort to claim a refund. Many airlines, hotels and car rental companies are refunding or crediting individuals who personally prepaid these transactions.
  • Proper method for University liability credit cards:
    • Travel Card: use the COV19 Travel Card Claim Form to claim expenses paid via Travel Card
    • Concur Travel Card: use the Expense Report in Concur to claim expenses paid via Concur Travel Card
    • ProCard: use the regular ProCard reconciliation method
  • Card holders should collect and maintain documentation about the refund/credit request and outcome.
  • During the card reconciliation process, please attach any supporting documentation and code all COVID-19 related travel expenses with program number COV19. This will facilitate later reimbursement by the university. Credits on cards statements from travel partners should be coded the same way.
  • Refunds granted in the form of a voucher for later use should be tracked by the department and used at the earliest opportunity.
  • Reimbursements do not apply to club or club sport travel.

Departments should review prior card statements for costs incurred in previous months and enter an expenditure transfer to add program code COV19 to the transaction. While an extra step, it will best ensure departments receive reimbursement for costs associated with cancelled trips.

Travel Funded by External Sponsoring Agencies

In addition to guidelines stated in the CSU Travel Policy, sponsoring agencies also have their own travel guidelines. Travel funded by external sponsors must be related to project activity and must be allowable and reasonable.

In the event that travel plans must be cancelled, requests for reimbursement of travel-related expenses such as airfare, hotel, registration, and cancellation fees will be reviewed on a case by case basis. Requests must be approved by UCP or Sponsored Programs, and in some cases would also require sponsor approval.

Please reach out to your dedicated Payment Service Technician if you have any questions about this process.

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Approval Flow During Travel Restriction

All approvers are responsible for reviewing all material including PDF before approving

1. Traveler Submits Request

Attaches all COVID-19 considerations

2. Cost Object/Budget Approver

Confirms Budget Approves

3. Manager/Dept Chair - Adds Dean

Verifies COVID-19 considerations, confirms travel is warranted - Adds Dean/AVP

4. Dean/AVP

Verifies COVID-19 considerations, confirms travel is warranted - Adds VP/Provost

5. VP/Provost Adds President

Verifies COVID-19 considerations

6. Presidents Office Previewer

Reviews all proper documentation - Send to President

7. President

Final review Submits "Approve or Deny" Travel Request

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Travel Updates