Travel Cash Advance Request and Reporting

The purpose of this policy guideline is to describe when to request a travel cash advance and guidelines for reporting expenses within two weeks of returning from travel destination.

It is Macalester’s preference that travel expenses are charged to a pcard.  An alternative for faculty and staff is to request a travel cash advance.  Students are not eligible to request a travel cash advance.

Pre-travel arrangements should be paid using a College pcard.  Pcards may also be used to pay for travel expenses during your trip, thereby eliminating the need for a travel cash advance.  Contact the Purchasing & Accounts Payable office to apply for a Visa Pcard.

Examples of situations that include travel:

  • Conferences (attendee or presenter)
  • Recruiting
  • Alumni visits
  • Speaking engagements
  • Grant-funded projects
  • International
  • Athletic & academic competitions

Examples of travel expense account codes:  (FOAPAL)

DOMESTIC DOMESTIC FOREIGN
704000 Airfare 704200
704001 Lodging 704201
704002 Meals 704202
704003 Ground Transportation 704203
704004 Mileage
704005 Gasoline 704205
704006 Parking & Tolls 704206
704007 Passport Fees 704207
704500 Conference Fees 704500
701500 Phone & Internet 701500

 

Requests for travel cash advances are submitted to the Accounts Payable office using the Travel Cash Advance Request Form .  Please submit requests thirty (30) days in advance to allow for proper processing procedures to be administered.  Faculty and staff are strongly encouraged to sign up for direct deposit to ensure the funds are expedited into their bank account before travel begins.

Within two weeks of returning (Travel cash advances are reportable in the same fiscal year the travel occurred.  Refer to Accounting end-of-year memo for submission deadlines.), complete a Travel Expense Report.  Refer to Reimbursable Travel Expenses and Business Purpose Description for guidelines on reporting travel expenses.  Include original receipts with expense reports.  

  •      Full amount of advance not used?   Return unused funds via personal check to Macalester College with travel expense report.
  •      Travel expenses exceeded advance?  Overage will be reimbursed to employee in next Accounts Payable payment process.

In the event expense reporting is not submitted within two weeks after the trip, the following steps will be taken:

1)      At two weeks, Accounts Payable personnel will contact traveler regarding the status of expense reporting. 

2)      Accounts Payable reserves the right to withhold any further cash advances until overdue reporting is submitted and approved. 

3)      At thirty days, Accounts Payable personnel will contact traveler and their supervisor regarding overdue expense reporting.  Employee forfeits access to any further cash advances until overdue reporting is submitted and approved.

 4)      At 60 days, Accounts Payable personnel will contact traveler, their supervisor and the Line Officer regarding overdue expense reporting.

 5)      At 90 days, Accounts Payable personnel will contact traveler, their supervisor, the Line Officer and the CFO regarding significantly overdue expense reporting.

 6)      Two weeks prior to 120 days, Accounts Payable personnel will contact traveler, their supervisor, the Line Officer, the CFO and alert Employment Services/Payroll to the possibility of an advance reportable to the IRS as taxable income. 

 7)      At 120 days, Accounts Payable personnel will report the outstanding advance to Employment Services/Payroll as taxable income reportable to the IRS on employee’s W-2 at year end.  To avoid having cash advances reported to the IRS as income at calendar year-end, employee must submit to Accounts Payable a complete, approved Travel Expense Report no later than December 15th

Reporting Timeline Accounts Payable will contact:
14 days overdue Traveler
30 days overdue Traveler and their supervisor
60 days overdue Traveler, their supervisor and the Line Officer
90 days overdue Traveler, their supervisor, the Line Officer and the CFO
106 days overdue Traveler, their supervisor, the Line Officer, the CFO and alert Employment Services/Payroll
120 days overdue Employment Services/Payroll will report advance as taxable income on W2

U: 1/2012