Travel and Purchasing


The following section pertains to business-related travel for faculty and staff. If you are a graduate student traveling for research, please refer to the Graduate Student Travel section

Training Materials:

Before You Travel

An eTravel request form (click for a job video tutorial) must be submitted prior to all travel so that a T-number can be issued through eTravel. Please submit this no less than 5 days prior to your trip to obtain approvals. Travel expenses without prior authorization will not be eligible for reimbursement. In most cases, staff can assist with prepayment of your flight or you can work directly with the travel agent once a travel request is approved, or you may pay out-of-pocket and return receipts for reimbursement. 
For international travel, faculty are eligible to receive a cash advance up to 80% of the travel estimate in certain situations. Cash advance reconciliations (use travel reimbursement form) are due 30 days upon return. All other receipts will be reimbursed after the trip has concluded. 
Please note that all airfare must be directly booked using the Corporate Travel Planners Travel Agent. Reimbursements will not be processed for any other airare booking. 
Tools to aid in planning your travel include: 

Personal Travel - Cost Comparison Tool

When traveling in conjunction with personal time or when you've elected to drive instead of fly, cost comparisons are needed at the time of booking. The College of Arts and Sciences Business Services Center has developed the ASC Travel Comparison Form that will help to compare the different modes of travel and situations in one place based on the Ohio State travel policy. All travel reimbursements submitted that incorporate personal time in conjunction with business travel or mileage in place of flying will require the attached form and all supporting documentation (flight comparisons, mileage maps etc.).

This form is required and should be attached to the travel request or the travel reimbursement for review.


After Travel

When you return from your trip, you may submit the online Travel Reimbursement Form (online) along with your scanned receipts OR use the PDF Version [pdf] and submit along with all original, itemized receipts for reimbursement and/or cash advance reconciliation.  Please note: expenses must be submitted within 90 days of your return date to be eligible for reimbursement. As you travel, please keep the following travel tips in mind so that we may process your reimbursement in a timely manner. If you received a cash advance (for international trips), you must submit all receipts within 30 days of your return date. Any expenses not documented will require a repayment to the department.  All receipts must be itemized showing the amount paid and the proof of payment. If the receipt doesn’t have the payment information, you may provide a copy of your credit card/bank statement highlighting the charge. Please be sure to mark out any other personal information including unrelated charges on the statement prior to submitting this document.


Submit the proof of purchase including the itinerary and payment information. It is preferred that flights be procured through Corporate Travel Partners, OSU's travel agentIf you find a lower price outside of the agency, please utilize the CTP Price Match Tool. You must purchase the most economical rate and provide cost comparisons if travel involves personal time in conjunction with business travel. Seating upgrades, priority boarding and first class rates are not eligible for purchase or reimbursement. 

Lodging Receipts

Lodging receipts must include the itemized charges for rooms and all meals and incidentals notated. Keep in mind that the University will reimburse for the conference rate if those are provided and a maximum of 2x the per diem rate. 

Meal Receipts

Please submit all itemized meal receipts. The cost of the meal will be capped at the per diem rate if the actual meal expense is greater. (Per diem is not eligible on many grants. Coca-Cola CDW and Arts & Sciences permit only itemized meal receipts.)

Per Diem Rates

The daily rate is determined by location. The daily breakdown is 25% breakfast, 25% lunch, and 50% dinner. If your conference registration or hotel covers any meals, you are not eligible for that meal. In addition, meals included on your flight or continental breakfasts offered as part of your lodging will not be reimbursed. (Per diem is not eligible on many grants. Coca-Cola CDW and Arts & Humanities permit only itemized meal receipts.)


The mileage rate as of January 1, 2016 is $0.54/cents per mile. You must either use a Google Mapshowing locations and mileage, or start and finish odometer readings. OSU also has a mileage logthat may be used for convenience.

Rental Car

OSU currently has contracts with two national agencies, National and Enterprise, with established rates that include the required coverage. These can be booked directly through CTP/Concur

These should be used unless the option isn’t available. If you do not utilize one of these contracts, please note that Damage Waiver (DW) / Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) / Loss Damage Waiver (LDW) and Liability insurance coverage are required. The university will not reimburse any other type of supplemental insurance. Liability insurance will be tagged as supplemental liability, or SPPL. If insurance was NOT purchased, you will not be eligible for reimbursement. Keep a copy of the fully executed agreement as proof of the required insurance. 

Submit the executed agreement showing OSU contract was utilized and DW/CDW and LDW. Submit the final, itemized receipt.

Do not accept the additional coverages of PAI:  Personal Accident Insurance (up to $ a day) or RAP:  Roadside  Assistance Protection (up to $5 a day). When using the OSU contract code you should not agree to, or accept any additional insurance options.  The OSU contract includes all of the necessary insurance required per the travel policy.

International Travel 

For faculty covered under OSU medical insurance and traveling on business, you are eligible to utilize Global Care (within the US) and RedPoint (outside the US) which provide services for locating providers in areas worldwide. If you are not an enrollee in one of the university's health plans, you can still enroll for this coverage. 

Graduate and Undergraduate Students, review the Travel Guidelines and Requirements


Please read the Arts and Sciences policies pertaining to purchasing. 

Faculty will be provided a periodic summary of funds available from the Administrative Associate. These funds include your AAAS annual allocation for travel and research expenses, college and divisional grants, start-up funds, and other special awards.  Be sure to submit details and award notifications to Steve McCann for managing of funds. Graduate Students. If you are awarded a travel grant and/or other OSU awards, please send Steve your award letter and grant proposal to assist with the management of your funds. 


The eRequest system is OSU’s preferred ordering system. This form allows you to submit a request for purchase (office supplies, books, etc.). All faculty, staff, and graduate students have access to the eRequest system and can submit one at anytime. For more information about the eRequest system, visit the College of Arts and Science's Business Services Center. 


OSU has contracts with vendors who provide needed services and equipment. Some of these are Office Max and Guy Brown for office supplies, UPS for shipping and others. OSU only reimburses for Coca-Cola products and will NOT reimburse for merchandise from Staples. 

Purchasing Card

The department has a purchasing card which can be used in lieu of issuing a purchasing order or request a check. Contact Lorraine or submit an eRequest. Once your request has been approved, stop by 486 University Hall to check out the purchasing card. Please note, OSU DOES NOT pay sales tax in the state of Ohio. Please tell the attendant that we are tax exempt and provide sales tax exemption certificate if needed. If sales tax is charged on the card during your transaction, you’ll be required to contact the business to have the tax amount removed. Please document all efforts in your attempt to collect the return of sales tax. Once you’ve checked out the card, please reference the accompanying helpful reminders in the purchase card envelope. 


When a business policy is not followed, we must seek college approval for each transaction. An exception form is required to communicate circumstances surrounding why an exception is being requested and should be completed by the individual who made the error. The individual seeking approval must sign the form and return to the administrative manager for further processing. 

[pdf] - Some links on this page are to .pdf files.  If you need these files in a more accessible format, please contact PDF files require the use of Adobe Acrobat Reader software to open them. If you do not have Reader, you may use the following link to Adobe to download it for free at: Adobe Acrobat Reader.