Personal Travel in Conjunction with Business Travel

The University and CFAES allow travelers the flexibility to add personal time and/or destinations to business travel.  If a University traveler opts to add personal time/destination then required processes must be completed both before and after the trip.

As a reminder, University funds must be used in a responsible and appropriate manner, including meeting policy, certification for the separation of personal and business expenses and appropriate supporting documentation.  Optics should be considered as well as avoiding the appearance of impropriety.  Failure to meet University and CFAES standards may result in reimbursement being reduced, denied and/or traveler repaying the University.

Below is general guidance and is not all-inclusive information.  Travelers are encouraged to seek guidance prior to finalizing any travel plans.    

Guidance and Resources

Common Scenarios of Adding Personal Travel

  • Extending Dates:  Adding personal days before/after the business need, including extending a trip over a weekend or University holiday.
  • Other Destination(s)):  Adding location(s) unnecessary to the business need.   
  • Increased Airfare Cost:  Airfare costs vary by date and time.  Adding personal days/ destinations can increase costs when compared to the business-only airfare.      
  • Drive vs. Fly Increased Cost:  Travelers commonly opt to drive to minimize out-of-pocket expenses particularly when a non-University (personal) companion is accompanying the traveler.  Driving a personal or rental vehicle (rather than fly) may result in increased costs.  Driving costs must not exceed the average cost of the business-only airfare.    

Spend Authorization (SA) 

University travelers are required to have an approved SA in the system prior to the purchase of any travel expense. An approved SA establishes the business travel dates, location, business purpose and estimated University expenses. 

It’s expected that travelers to disclose all personal travel on the SA (see below).  Pre-trip disclosure supports transparency, provides required documentation for separation of business and personal expenses, the accuracy of approvals and effective compliance reviews.    

SA Attachments 

  1. Completed “Travel Comparison Worksheet” (required):  This University form is required by policy to be completed when a traveler is adding personal time, destination and/or opting to drive rather than fly.  The “Travel Comparison Worksheet” is available at
  2. Conference Materials (if applicable):  An agenda or other summary of conference content and conference dates.
  3. CTP Airfare Comparison Quotes (required):  Travelers are required to obtain airfare quotes from CTP (only) to demonstrate any price differences between business-only and traveler’s personal travel preferences (dates, locations, driving, etc.). 
  4. Applicable Supplemental Explanation/Documentation (recommended):  CFAES recommends travelers attach supplemental information that further clarifies and details travel plans.  Suggestions include creating a day-by-day itinerary (Word or Excel) to clearly itemize the business and  personal days, location(s), expenses, etc. 

CTP Airfare Required

Airfare must only be quoted and purchased from CTP (University contracted travel agency).  Adding personal time/destination does not grant an “exception” for travelers to purchase airfare from any other airfare supplier. The University closely monitors compliance of airfare policies and may deny reimbursement or require repayment if not purchased through CTP.

Comparison Airfare Quotes Required

If adding personal time/destination, then comparison airfare quotes are required.  It’s more effective for travelers to work directly with a CTP agent for comparison quotes.  Concur online booking tool is less effective with identifying cost variances of business and personal portions. 

Obtain Two (2) Airfare Quotes from CTP Agent

NOTE:  The University requires comparison quotes only obtained from CTP.  Comparison quotes from any other airfare provider are not acceptable.  Both quotes should be attached to the SA.

  1. 1st quote:  Airfare estimate for business-only dates/destination. 
  2. 2nd quote:  Airfare estimate with the additional personal dates/destination. 

CTP Airfare Payment Options

  1. Split Payment Methods (prepayment and personal credit card):  On occasion, (not always) CTP agents can split payment with the business portion applied to University Prepayment and personal portion paid by personal credit card.    
  2. All Paid by Personal Credit Card:  If traveler uses personal credit card for both the business and personal portions then the business portion can be promptly reimbursed (before trip) via ER.   
  3. All University Prepayment:  It’s strongly discouraged for University Prepayment be used for both the business and personal portions.  However, if this occurs the traveler is required to repay the University for the personal portion within 7-days of airfare purchase.  It’s not allowable to delay repayment or request reduction from post-trip reimbursement.
  4. PCard Reminder:  At no time is an individual and/or department PCard permitted to be used for purchase of any airfare.  Airfare is only permitted to be purchased from CTP using central University prepayment or personal credit card. 

Drive vs. Fly Comparison Quote

Obtain a quote from CTP agent for average airfare of business dates and destination.  Any additional costs related to driving (e.g. vehicle mileage, rental car and fuel, additional lodging, per diem, etc.) will be capped at CTP comparison quote for airfare.  The quote should be attached to the SA.

PCard Payment (Hotel, Rental Car, etc.) 

PCard is not permitted to be used for any portion of a personal travel expense. Including if there is intention to “repay” the University at a later date, and/or, reduce reimbursement to
“repay” personal expenses.  Travelers must be diligent in providing both PCard and personal payment at point-of-sale with hotel, rental car, rental car fuel, etc.


Expense Reports (ER) 

ERs are a critical component given it is the official audit record of actual trip expenses.  ERs must be itemized with the business expenses and supporting documentation attached.  Additionally, ERs capture the traveler’s certification attesting to the accuracy and legitimacy of the business expenses.  ERs are reviewed for compliance both internally and externally to CFAES and often compared to information and documentation provided with the pre-trip SA.        

ER Attachments 

  1. Itemized Receipts:  When required by University policy.
  2. Emails or Related Documents:  Any documents that may further supports business purpose and expenses. 
  3. Supplemental Explanation/Documentation (if applicable):  In the event travel plans varied from the time of SA approval then CFAES recommends travelers to attach an updated day-to-bay itinerary of the actual travel to demonstrate any trip changes.