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Learn About Lodging

Lodging may be reimbursed when an individual is traveling overnight on official business outside his/her official station, the area within a 25-mile radius of an employee’s base point.

Lodging Limits

Lodging limits follow the continental US and outside continental US (CONUS/OCONUS) rate tables established by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA).  Reimbursement for lodging is limited to actual expenses incurred up to the allowable lodging rate amount, plus hotel taxes and surcharges.  Expenses in excess of the guidelines may be reimbursed up to 200% of the lodging limits with proper written justification (i.e. conference hotel, overflow hotel, minimized ground transportation costs, etc.).  Travelers who do not plan with careful consideration to these guidelines will bear the additional expense personallyIn such cases, taxes and surcharges will be prorated and reimbursed only for the appropriate rate.

Should the hotel rate exceed 200% of the allowable lodging rate, exceptions may be granted by an Authorized Approver, with overages greater than 200% placed on local funds. In such cases, taxes and surcharges will be prorated accordingly.

Please view Documentation for Travel and Food Expenses to learn more about documentation requirements.

Alternative Lodging Authorization

When lodging other than hotels and motels is used, travelers must conduct a cost comparison with normal (i.e. hotel/motel) accommodations. Any contracts associated with alternative lodging must be sent to for processing along with the cost comparison. Contract processing can take up to ten business days. For alternative lodging to be approved, the cost comparison must show:

  • Total cost for using the alternate accommodations and length of stay 
  • Cost of hotel/motel accommodations in the same geographic area 
  • Any additional relevant details (number of travelers, net savings, etc.)
  • Business justification for rates above per diem

Non-Canceled Hotel Reservations

Communicate travel plan changes to the hotel as soon as possible when a confirmed reservation is being held.  Since hotels can charge for non-cancelled reservations, these charges will not be reimbursed if the traveler is negligent in canceling reservations.

Number of Persons in a Hotel Room

When two or more people are traveling on official University business and staying in the same hotel room, the reimbursable amount will be the lodging rate allowed in the area they are staying, plus the cost charged by the hotel for any additional persons in the room. Documentation from the hotel listing additional hotel charges for each additional person, per room must be provided.

Dividing the hotel rate by the number of persons in the room for purposes of justifying rates that exceed the lodging guidelines is not permitted for luxury or premium accommodations.

Advance Payments

Advance payments for lodging are discouraged.  Use of the travel card is encouraged to secure room confirmations.  Advance payments using the travel charge card will not be reimbursed prior to the trip.  If an advance payment is necessary, it is limited to one night’s deposit for payments made on a purchase order.

For More Information

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