Travel Services

Travel Approvals

Check With Your Department First

All university travel requires approval and you cannot approve your own travel . Before you make specific travel plans, find out from your department the type of approval you need. For example, there may be a departmental form to complete and be signed by your supervisor. Different sources of funding for the trip may require different approvals. The travel expense voucher (TEV) requires both the traveler's signature and the signature of someone from the department who has the authority to spend money from the budget. Be sure you have the required approvals before you take your trip.

Prior Approval Documentation Requirements

State of Washington accounting regulations require prior written approval for all out-of-state travel, regardless of funding source. For the purposes of prior approval, out-of-state is defined as any travel destination outside of Washington.

The method or form used to document written prior approval is a Travel Authority Form.

Each prior approval request must include the following information:

  • Name of traveler
  • Purpose of trip
  • Travel destination
  • Dates of travel
  • Budget & Project being charged

For most university funding sources, prior approval requests must be signed by the appropriate Dean/Vice President (may be delegated to Chairs/Directors).

Conference Registration

WSU Travel Division will pay a conference registration for official University Travel. This may be done by submitting a Travel Authority with the Registration section (Section2) completed and the completed registration materials attached. Registration forms should be submitted at least ten days prior to due date. The Travel Division mails the registration fee directly to the organization. Indicate full name of conference in the "Purpose" section. Do not use the acronym.

Wire transfers are done for out of country conferences. Be certain complete wire instructions including bank name, conference account number, name of organization hosting the conference and any other pertinent information are included in the Travel Authority.

If meals are part of the regular registration fee and are not optional, general university funds may be used to pay conference meal costs. However, optional meal costs may only be paid up to the maximum allowable amounts using general university funds.

If time prevents prepayment of the registration fee by the Travel Division, the traveler may pay the registration fee and be reimbursed with proof of payment (receipt and/or copy of front and back of cancelled check).

Another option for Conference Registration payment is a departmental Purchasing Card. This allows the payment to be direct billed to the university.

Travel Advance

Appointed WSU employees with at least two months of remaining employment are eligible for travel advances. An eligible employee may request a travel advance if the travel period exceeds 15 days or if the traveler is unable to obtain a state travel charge card. Any exceptions to WSU travel advance policy must be clearly noted on the travel authority form.(Employees must be current in accounting for previous advances to receive another advance.)

To receive a Travel Advance, complete a Travel Authority form including Section 3 (Travel Advance) and sign the Travel Advance Agreement on the line indicated for Traveler's Signature.

A Travel Advance is given to cover per diem (meals and lodging) expenses only. See domestic per diem for various location rates.

The minimum dollar limit for a travel advance is $129.00. Travel Advances may be given for up to 90 days.

Retention of Requests for Prior Approval

Approved requests to travel out-of-state must be maintained by your department. Ideally, these requests should be maintained in the department budget or travel file and must be available for audit.

Reimbursement Approval

After your trip, prepare and sign your travel expense voucher (TEV). Your TEV must be approved by one of the following individuals with authority to approve expenditures on the budget to be charged:

  • Your immediate supervisor
  • The Principal Investigator (for sponsored projects)
  • The Dean
  • The Chair
  • A department administrator
  • Any person with designated budget authority besides the traveler
Travel Services, PO Box 641025, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-1025, 509-335-2034, Contact Us