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Learn About Transportation Options

Travelers shall use the most direct, practical, and economical route of travel; which can include mileage for a personally owned vehicle, cost to rent a vehicle, travel by air, rail, taxis, shuttles and buses.

Options

Air & Rail

VCU faculty and staff are required to book air and rail tickets for official business using University funds through Christopherson Business Travel. Prior to booking travel with Christopherson, every traveler must update their online traveler profile. Step-by-step instructions: http://procurement.vcu.edu/i-want-to/travel/book-travel/

Class of Fare

Generally, airline & rail travel cannot exceed the rates charged for coach class accommodations. The Authorized Approver may grant permission for above economy class travel when:

Trips with an international destination, the international air/rail segments may be business class and domestic segments air/rail must be economy/coach.

Or

When business class does not cost more than the lowest available coach fare

Baggage fees

Charges for checking bags are reimbursable. Excessive weight and/or unusual charges must be fully explained.

Change Fees

Charges for changes to tickets/reservations to accommodate personal comfort, convenience and taste are not reimbursable. Change fees must be fully explained.

Combining Personal & Business Travel

Travelers who include personal travel when traveling for authorized VCU business must obtain the cost for the business travel portion only. This cost must be obtained through Christopherson Business Travel (online or agent) and must be at the time of booking. Air and rail tickets must be purchased through Christopherson Business Travel regardless. The university must not pay more than the travel cost for business portion only. The business portion documentation must be submitted with the Chrome River reimbursement.

Fly America Act

Travelers using Federal grant funds are required to fly on U.S. flag air carriers as stated in the Fly America Act. Contact your principal investigator or Grants & Contracts Accounting for detailed Federal regulations. http://tvlon.com/resources/FlyAct.html

Low Cost Carriers

VCU encourages the use of Low Cost Carriers (JetBlue, Southwest, etc.) to maintain competitive airfare prices in Richmond. Travelers are encouraged to make reasonable effort to utilize these carriers

Air Travel Options: Chartered, Personally-Owned, or State-Owned

Please contact travel@vcu.edu for information about Chartered, personally-owned, or State owned aircraft.

Personally-Owned Vehicles

Employees are permitted to use their personally owned automobile when an Enterprise/National contract vehicle is not available, or when the use of a personally owned vehicle is cost-beneficial to the University. Round-trip mileage traveled routinely by the employee between his residence and base point. Mileage and other commuting cost incurred during commuting status are considered a personal expense and are not reimbursable.

VCU reimburses at the current Standard Mileage Rate established by the IRS. http://www.irs.gov/taxpros/article/0,,id=156624,00.html

Travelers are encouraged to use the Chrome River mileage widget powered by Google Maps. This will ensure the origination and destination addresses are documented as required.

When travel is by personally-owned automobile the total of the expenses reimbursed, including meals and lodging, should not exceed the total cost of the trip using the most economical public transportation fare available, also including meals and lodging. Authorized Approvers are authorized to grant exceptions to this policy when justified. Comparative statements should be attached to the travel voucher for reimbursement.

Rental Vehicles

Reimbursement of vehicle rental expenses is limited to official business use only. The traveler must select the most economical type of vehicle available, and acquire the appropriate commercial rate or government discount available when the vehicle is rented. VCU encourages travelers to use the Enterprise/National Contract.

Itemized rental and gas receipts must be submitted with the reimbursement request. Proper business justification is required for optional add-ons (GPS, toll passes, etc.).

Vehicle Refueling

Travelers must ensure that the rental vehicle is refueled before returning the vehicle to the rental contractor. Reimbursement will be based on the fuel used and receipts provided. Travelers must never authorize prepayment for fuel.

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If Then Notes
State Employee Decline

The Department of Treasury, Division of Risk Management, provides a Statewide Self-Insured Automobile plan for State employees.

Non-State Employee Accept

Liability Damage Waiver (LDW) and Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) are reimbursable expenses

International Rentals Accept

Individuals traveling outside of the contiguous 48 States are required to purchase and will be reimbursed for LDWand CDW insurance.

Other types of insurance offered such as trip cancellation, personal, health or life insurance are not reimbursable.

Enterprise/National Rental Car Contract

VCU utilizes a Virginia Association of State College and University Purchasing Professionals (VASCUPP) contract with Enterprise Leasing CO. to provide nationwide vehicle rentals through Enterprise Rent-A-Car and National Car Rental brands.

VCU is exempt from paying state taxes associated with the rental in the state of Virginia. Travelers must be diligent in requesting that tax exempt status is honored at the reservation location.

VASCUPP contract pricing for Enterprise Rent-A-Car damage waiver fee of $5/day is included in the local and national daily rental rates. If the operator of the rental vehicle is between 18 and 20 years old, the damage waiver is only included within the Commonwealth of Virginia.

One-way rentals can be booked with either Enterprise or National Car Rental using the contract number XZ21184, and will include all contractual benefits. However, Enterprise may charge a variable “drop fee” calculated by class of car and distance.

Make a Reservation

Reserve the rental through Christopherson Business Travel online booking tool or contact Enterprise or National directly. You must provide the contract number XZ21184. You will need your VCU ID to pick up the rental.

Ground Transportation

Public transportation, such as taxis, shuttles and metro, is allowed for official business needs. Receipts are required for reimbursements requests in excess of $75.00.

Richmond Airport shuttle

James River Transportation provides shuttle services to and from Richmond International Airport (RIC). Reservations can be made:

For individuals making arrangements for guests to the university, you may want to request an exception to allow the charge(s) to be made on your P-Card. Please email corpcard@vcu.edu to obtain information on requesting an exception.

For More Information

procurement services Travel & Corporate Card Services »
912 W. Grace Street, 5th Floor
Richmond, Virginia 23284