COVID-19 Guidance for Travel & Travel Card Related Expenses

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As the University of Pittsburgh continues to monitor the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, the health and well-being of the Pitt community and our partners is a priority. The PantherExpress team has compiled guidance in response to the COVID-19 outbreak on the following topics related to travel as well as the use of the University Travel Card for unplanned/un-budgeted expenses:


If faculty or staff wish to cancel [travel] plans due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the University is hereby granting an exception to the University’s Travel & Business Expense Policy (FN28, formerly 05-07-01) for any otherwise reimbursable University-related travel booked through May 31, 2020. The policy was originally developed to heighten awareness among travelers of the costs they incur when changing business travel plans for personal reasons. But over the weekend of March 7-9, Provost Cudd and David DeJong, Vice Chancellor of Human Resources issued a memo to Deans, Presidents, Associate Deans, Vice Presidents RC Heads, Administrators and Business Managers that addressed these concerns. Please view the communication here.

They will reassess this date as the University continues to monitor the COVID-19 outbreak and may extend the deadline as conditions evolve. This applies to both conference expenses paid by schools and regional campuses, as well as grant-funded travel.

Directions to reconcile cancelled travel and other emergency expenses in Concur

  • Log into Concur to create an expense report
    • Please put all expenses associated with this trip onto 1 expense report – both charges and any credits that you receive.
    • If you’ve paid for your expense(s) with the University Travel Card and the charge and credit transactions net to zero dollars, you must still create an expense report and include these transactions.
    • For all cancellations, either charged on a Travel Card or a personal credit/debit card, a copy of the cancellation confirmation must be included in the receipt packet to be considered valid.
  • For all expenses and credits related to this trip, please use the COVID-19 Cancelled Travel expense type. This will work with both charges and credits and will assist us in keeping track of cancelled travel during this time.
  • For any unbudgeted/emergency expenses (such as purchases of disinfectant wipes, gloves, etc), please use this expense type in Concur.



In preparation of the threat of COVID-19, you may be incurring unplanned and unbudgeted expenses such as the purchase of hand sanitizer and cleaning supplies as well as unrecoverable costs related to canceled events. These types of expenses should be recorded as follows in order to allow us to track these expenses appropriately. More detailed examples will follow as we continue our outreach to departmental administrators.

  • In PRISM – use subcode 8119
  • Using Travel Card, Concur – use COVID-19 Cancelled Travel expense type
  • Using Purchasing Card – reconcile transactions using subcode 8119

The CFO’s office will be discussing this in more detail at the next Directors of Administration meeting on March 20th.