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Air Travel

Directive Statement

The University should reimburse travelers for:

  1. Main Cabin class tickets on all airlines
  2. SouthWest airlines is a low-cost carrier and charges a $15 boarding fee.  This will be considered the same as the Delta upgrade to Main Cabin and allowable for reimbursement
  3. Upgrades (classes above Economy and Main Cabin) only if the flight is over 9 hours. If the ticket is upgraded to a preferred seat within the Economy or Main Cabin class, the Travel Exception Request form will not need to be submitted to the UF Travel Office.  For all other upgrades, travelers must submit the Travel Exception Request Form to the UF Travel Office BEFORE the ticket is purchased for them to be reimbursed

The University will not reimburse travelers for:

  1. Upgrades for flights that are less than 9 hours long – in this case travelers will only be reimbursed for the economy/main class amount
  2. Travelers or originators should contact the UF Travel Office before purchasing any Main Cabin tickets that have been upgraded if they are unsure about reimbursement
  3. “If the UF Travel Office does not approve the request, either as a denial or because the Travel Exception Request form was not completed, the traveler will be reimbursed for economy/main class only”

Airline fare codes are assigned to airfare classes to determine the type of seat you are purchasing.  All airline fare codes acceptable with UF funding are in the chart below:

Fare Code Description Allowable
A Discounted Domestic first class Not Allowable
B Coach, Upgradeable transoceanic & domestic Allowable
C Business Elite Latin America Not Allowable
D Discounted Business Elite transoceanic and domestic Not Allowable
E Basic economy Allowable
F First Class full fare Not Allowable
G Discounted first class fare/Business Allowable for Upgrade for flights > 9 hours
H Coach, Non-upgradeable transoceanic, Upgradeable domestic Allowable
All I Codes Discounted business class Allowable for Upgrade for flights > 9 hours
All J Codes Business Elite transoceanic full fare Not Allowable
K Coach, Non-upgradeable transoceanic, Upgradeable domestic Allowable
L Coach transoceanic or domestic Allowable
M Coach, Upgradeable for transoceanic & domestic Allowable
N Coach Allowable
O Business Elite Not Allowable
All P Codes Discounted first class fare
Discounted business class
Delta – Not Allowable
All other airlines – Allowable for flights > 9 hours
Q Coach, Non-upgradeable transoceanic, UPGRADEABLE domestic. Allowable
All R Codes First Class upgraded via Medallion upgrade Not Allowable
S Discounted Coach Allowable
T Coach, Transoceanic or domestic Allowable
U Coach Allowable
V Discounted Coach Allowable
W Premium economy Allowable for Upgrade for flights > 9 hours
W+ Comfort+ Allowable for Upgrade for flights > 9 hours
All X Codes Discounted coach Allowable
Y Full fare coach, Upgradeable transoceanic & domestic Allowable
All Z Codes Discounted first class fare
Discounted business class
American – Not Allowable
All other airlines – Allowable for Upgrade for flights > 9 hours

Any travel that has personal time included in the trip and requires more time/days away than the normal work portion of the trip, will require a cost comparison.  This will ensure that the university is not paying more than what the business portion of the trip would have cost.  The cost comparison should be performed at the time of purchase to get an accurate reflection of any true difference in pricing.  Comparison must be completed with the same airline, fare codes, flight stops, type of ticket  (i.e. round trip or one way), and etc.  If a cost comparison is not submitted, a comparison will need to be done at the time of reimbursement.  This may result in monies needing to be repaid to the university.

Reason for Directive

Consideration is to be given to the total cost to the University, considering time of the traveler, impact on the productivity of the traveler, cost of transportation, and per diem or subsistence required.  Air travel is recommended when the cost of an employee’s time is an important factor or when travel time by other methods would increase the subsistence expense.  The traveler may claim either the mileage rate specified in Section 112.061, Florida Statutes, or the lesser of the state contract fare and the most economical commercial direct airfare available for the same trip

If no state contract fare and no commercial airfare is available directly between the points of travel, reimbursement shall be limited to the mileage rate specified in Section 112.061, Florida Statutes, or the most economical commercial airfare closest to the point of origin and the point of destination.

Who must comply?

All UF departments.

Commercial Air Travel

Purchase of Tickets

The traveler, or person making travel arrangements, (hereinafter called the “ticket purchaser”) must retain all transportation ticket receipts to be attached to the Travel Expense Report in myUFL. The documentation must show:

  • Amount-shown paid
  • Method of payment
  • Purchase amount of the ticket
  • Dates and times of flight
  • Trip destination
  • Fare class for each flight of itinerary

An itinerary will provide the above information.

The ticket purchaser must carefully evaluate the circumstances and risk of cancellation prior to the purchase of each such ticket to avoid or at least minimize the cancellation penalty on these ticketsAlthough the savings realized from the use of such tickets may be considerable, it should also be kept in mind that the penalties for cancellation of the tickets are generally substantial

Airfare insurance cannot be purchased with State or Grant Funds.

If the person making travel arrangements is unsure whether a ticket is considered upgraded, contact the Travel Office BEFORE completing the purchase to ensure reimbursement will be allowed. 

airline seating

Cancellations

Penalties for early or late returns, such as airfare, lodging, registration, etc., may be paid from university funds only:

  1. If the cause for cancellation is in the best interest of the University
  2. If the cancellation is due to illness of the traveler or illness or death of a member of the traveler’s immediate family, for which an employee is authorized to use sick or administrative leave

If the cancellation is allowable for reimbursement, justification detailing the circumstances surrounding the cancellation must be attached to the Travel Expense Report.

If the ticket is canceled for the convenience of the traveler, the cancellation penalty may not be paid or reimbursed from university funds.

Savings on Commercial Airfare

Whenever possible, consider discounted or reduced round-trip rates.

Air Travel Expenses Not Eligible for Reimbursement

The University will not reimburse:

  1. An expense paid for with reward points (i.e., sky miles or any other reward points)
  2. The value of complimentary travel expenses
  3. Charges assessed for the replacement of lost tickets

Private Aircraft

A passenger on a private aircraft may be reimbursed for the actual amount charged and paid for his/her fare up to the mileage rate specified in Section 112.061, Florida Statutes, or the lesser of:

  1. the state contract fare, or
  2. the cost of the most economical direct commercial airfare available for the trip
  3. If no direct commercial flight is available, the most economical commercial airfare closest to the point of origin and the point of destination may be used

Last Reviewed

05/11/2020: updated content

Toolkits

UF HR Toolkit – Travel and Expense Module

Contacts

Travel & Employee Reimbursements: (352) 392-1241

travel@ufl.edu

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