The following section pertains to business-related travel for all OSU employees.

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 7 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. 


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. 


Airfare - New Travel Mandate

Please note that all airfare must be directly booked using the Corporate Travel Planners Travel Agent. Reimbursements will not be processed for any other airfare booking. 


Travel Planning Tools


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. 

  • OSU will only pay/reimburse expenses incurred at locations/times specific to the business purpose. 
  • OSU will not prepay any personal expenses unless documentation verifies there is no increase in cost. 
  • Cost variances in expenses such as airfare, car rental, and lodging must be clearly documented.

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.

Third-Party Payments (Covered by another institution)

Prepayments are not allowed if there will be payment of expenses or reimbursement to the traveler by a third party. You should work directly with the institution on requesting reimbursements. 


After Travel

When you return from your trip, please submit itemized receipts for reimbursement and/or cash advance reconciliation.  

  • Expenses must be submitted within 90 days of your return date to be eligible for reimbursementAs you travel, please keep the following travel tips in mind so that we may process your reimbursement in a timely manner.
  • Cash advance (for international trips only) must have receipts submitted 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 unit rate, total 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.

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 federal per diem rate for lodging. 

Per Diem or Meal Receipts

Per diem is preferred and 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. 

If you're claiming actual meal expenses, you must 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.)


Review the current federal mileage rate when using your personal vehicle. You must either use a Google Map showing locations and mileage, or start and finish odometer readings. OSU also has a mileage log that 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

Keep a copy of the fully executed agreement as proof of the required insurance, proof that OSU rental car contract was utilized, and the final credit card receipt (obtained when you turn the vehicle in). 

The OSU rental car contract includes all of the necessary insurance required per the travel policy (listed below). You should not agree to, or accept any additional insurance options. If the contract is not available for whatever reason, you must show proof of the following coverage: 

  1. Damage Waiver (DW)
  2. Collision Damage Waiver (CDW)
  3. Loss Damage Waiver (LDW)
  4. Liability coverage (this may be tagged as supplemental liability, or SPPL)

OSU will not reimburse:

  • Any other type of supplemental insurance.
  • PAI:  Personal Accident Insurance (up to $ a day) or 
  • RAP:  Roadside  Assistance Protection (up to $5 a day). 

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