Travel Status and Reimbursement Policy

To be eligible to travel on UNLV business and request to be reimbursed for per diem and out of pocket expenses by submitting an approved travel expense.


Travel Classifications Defined

The traveler must be traveling 75 miles or more outside of Las Vegas (or their permanent work station), and be classified as one of the following:

  1. Faculty
  2. Staff
  3. Student
  4. Volunteer
  5. Candidates (Employee & students recruitment)
  6. Invited guest/independent service provider (Are not eligible for per diem. See additional information below.)
  7. Group travel

Travel Status Time Frame

Travel status begins two hours prior to departure for domestic flights, and three hours prior to departure for international flights. Travel status ends when the flight has arrived at the airport for both domestic and international flights.

Reimbursement for Travel

Before travel arrangements begin, travelers categorized as faculty, staff, group, or student must have received approval from their department head.

For additional information and instructions, on invited guests, volunteers, candidates for employment, and independent service providers, see definitions below.

Individual Travel (Faculty, Staff & Students)

State regulation requires the university to follow the existing federal travel regulations for lodging and meal per diem. Federal per diem rates represent the maximum allowable reimbursement to travelers. Individuals claim per diems and submit individual TD's, along with allowed paid receipts. Individual travel may only request meal per diem unless a hosted meal applies. For more information, visit the Accounts Payable website.

Individual/Group Travel with Invited Guest (Faculty, Staff, Students and Invited Guest)

In this scenario, travel includes an invited guest that does not necessarily travel to the university, but is invited to attend a conference in another state; the department has chosen to host meals and prepay other expenses such as registration fees, lodging, and ground transportation, including taxi or shuttle fees. Note: For insurance purposes, vehicle rental and use of state contracts may not be extended to a guest. Vehicle rental may be reimbursed to a guest who has paid for the rental with their own credit card.

Requirements: Travel Expense must include a letter of invitation to the guest and identify hosted meals.

Group (Faculty & Staff Only)/Team Travel (Faculty, Staff & Students)

Defined as two or more people traveling to the same destination for the same purpose. Team travel has a designated leader who is responsible for all trip expenses for the entire group and submits one TD in the team leaders’ name.
Although meal per diem is allowable for individual meals, meal per diem is not relevant for group or team meals as actual receipts may be submitted for reimbursement. Twenty percent tips are allowable for group and team meals.
(See exception in Budgeted Travel)

Budgeted Travel

Allowance for the entire trip is not to exceed budgeted amount.

  • Example: Department has pre-determined a maximum of $500 for an individual's travel expenses. The traveler may only receive reimbursement of the maximum amount approved, and may spend monies out of pocket that are not reimbursable.

The leader can give meal allowance (cash) to a designated temporary leader, in which the balance of the group/team will eat together and turn in receipts to the main leader. The leader can claim these receipts in full along with the eligible meal per diem amount for him/her.

The leader may request reimbursement for budgeted group meals based on the eligible meal per diem for the area of travel.

This method is common for long trips where advances are requested. An example of this method is below:

Five members in the group, meal per diem allowance is $75 per day per the GSA table, trip duration 25 days (total $9,375), the meals have been budgeted at $100 per day for the group (total $2,500) original receipts are still required even though the requested reimbursement cannot exceed the approved meal budget of $2,500. When using this method include the calculated budget on the TD to show how you arrived at the requested amount.

Volunteer Travel

A volunteer is an individual who performs a service that is directly related to UNLV business, without the expectation of monetary or material compensation. The following defines the different types of volunteers:

  • Category A - a person who performs a volunteer assignment for three days or less.
  • Category B - a person who performs a volunteer assignment for more than three days or on a recurring basis. Volunteers in this category must complete the volunteer agreement as well as the volunteer worker description form:
  • Category C - an adjunct or clinical faculty member
  • Category D - a non-paid board member
  • Category E - community service workers

Individuals in one of the above categories must complete a volunteer agreement form with the Human Resource department. See lists of required documents for volunteers at the Office of Human Resources link. Volunteers are expected to abide by university policies and regulations. Volunteers may not replace classified employees who have been laid off. Volunteers are not considered employees for any purpose other than worker’s compensation and general liability protection.

Account Restrictions

No state funds for candidate recruitment (30 RC).