Travel: Booking and Policies

For more information, please refer to the BU Travel Guidelines and T-Card Guidelines

Booking Travel

  • To request travel to be booked, please fill out the Travel Request form. If you are a student, IAR must book your flights.
  • IAR can purchase a student’s hotel if the hotel will accept a credit card voucher form in lieu of having the card physically present for check-in/out. It is the traveler’s responsibility to obtain the form and submit it to the IAR office.
  • Travel requests should be made at least two weeks before your scheduled departure date.
  • Travel advances are no longer being offered by the University except in extreme cases. If you require a travel advance, please fill out the Travel Advance Request Form. (Please note that travel advances cannot be used to purchase airfare.)
  • A T-Card and Concur must be used to purchase flights when paying from non-grant sources. A T-Card should be used for all expenses when paying from non-grant sources.

Per Diem

  • There are two types of per diem: Lodging and Meals/Incidentals. An expense report can contain one type of per diem, both, or neither, but the same method must be consistently used for the duration of travel.
  • Domestic Per diem rates can be found on the GSA website.
  • Foreign Per diem rates can be found on the US Dept of State website (please remember to check that you are viewing the proper month).
  • If you use per diem on your reports, receipts are not required.


  • Reimbursements will only be given for economy class tickets unless you have prior written approval.
  • The Fly America Act and Open Skies Agreement must be followed for all Federally sponsored funds. This loosely translates to only using US flag carrier airlines. If you do not know what the Fly America Act is, please have your flights booked by the IAR office.
  • If you plan to extend your business trip with personal travel, you MUST provide a price quote (a screenshot is sufficient) that is from the same day that you book your flight. The quote must show the cost of airfare returning at the end of the business trip. You will be responsible to pay for any difference in costs. If no screenshot is provided, you might not be able to be reimbursed.


  • BU requests that you use Avis for all rental cars to take advantage of BU’s corporate account (ref: A294000).
  • BU’s insurance covers both yourself and the rental car for travel; you should not purchase additional insurance.
  • To be reimbursed for a rental car, the original, itemized receipt must be provided.
  • Personal vehicles are authorized when cost effective. The total cost cannot exceed the equivalent airfare cost.

Lodging and Meals

  • Hotels should be booked through Concur in order to obtain discounted rooms.
  • To be reimbursed for lodging, you must provide the original hotel bill unless you are using per diem rates.
  • All receipts for meals must be included unless you are using per diem rates.
  • If the meal expenses include other people, you must declare who was present, the purpose of the meal, and the date.
  • Reimbursement for the cost of alcohol is not allowed on Federal awards.