Policy Redesign Project

All policies and procedures are being reviewed as part of this project. This document is pending review, but remains in effect until the review is carried out.

Travel Procedures

Establishment: EDA, 18 May 2004
Last Amended: Vice-President (Corporate Services), 23 June 2016
Nature of Amendment: Changes to 4.4.1 to add Airbnb and Uber
Date Last Reviewed: April 2017
Responsible Officer: Vice-President (Corporate Services)

1.  Booking travel

1.1  Obtain approval 

1.1.1  Approval needed before confirming / paying
Formal approval must be obtained from the Authorised Person before any travel is confirmed and paid for. For international travel this must be processed through FlindersPro.  For domestic travel this must be in writing and is usually achieved by signing the Travel Confirmation Form.

1.1.2  Special consideration may be needed for International travel
Care should be taken to ensure that any health warnings, security warnings or other factors that apply to intended travel destinations are given due consideration.  The responsibilities and requirements for approval for travel to Level 3 countries/areas, as identified in DFAT travel advisories, are set out in clause 3 and 7 of the Policy.  See also the international travel procedure for key considerations with respect to travel, health and safety. 

1.2   Preferred/approved travel suppliers and accommodation and subsistence standards

1.2.1  University preferred/approved suppliers 

(a) Travel agents

The travel agents selected by the University as preferred suppliers for domestic and international travel are:

  • Phil Hoffmann Travel (PHT)
  • STA Travel

(b) Airlines

Qantas is the University’s preferred airline and should be used wherever possible.
Other approved airlines include Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines and Virgin Airlines.

(c) General exceptions
Grounds on which the Authorised Person may approve the use of another supplier are:

  • grant conditions stipulate the use of a particular supplier, in which case the conditions of the grant prevail;
  • a package deal connected with a conference offering substantial cost savings;
  • supplier route availability;
  • significant delays to departure and/or arrival times will be incurred; and,
  • a cheaper fare with comparable conditions (i.e. change and cancellation rules) and supplier standard and service is available.

In the case of international travel, University travellers should consider the risks of using others suppliers (especially purchased outside of Australia) against the expected savings to be achieved.

In all other cases the use of other suppliers will not be approved unless exceptional circumstances have arisen. Approval must be sought in writing from the Vice-President (Corporate Services).

1.2.2  Accommodation standards 
The standard for accommodation, for both domestic and international travel is “moderate business class convenient to the place of business”.

1.2.3  Reasonable Meals and incidentals (subsistence) standards 
The Standards rates are based on those released periodically by the Australian Taxation Office.

Please refer to the link on the 'Tax Information' page for 'Reasonable Travel and Overtime Meal allowance' expense amounts for the current period.       

1.3   Checklist for travel bookings and associated purchasing, record keeping and acquittal requirements.

The checklist below sets out purchasing procedures and acquittal and record-keeping obligations for domestic and international travel.

Travel action

Purchasing methods

Acquittal and record keeping requirements

Domestic Travel

Note: A Travel Diary may need to be kept. Refer section 5.1
Domestic airfare purchased through PHT or STA (from 1/7/04) Use the Travel Confirmation Form for PHT or STA. Refer section 1.4  
Domestic airfare purchased on line through PHT Purchase via PHT website. Pay with University purchasing card.
Refer section 1.5
Refer procedures for purchasing cards, section 4.4.
Domestic accommodation bookings and payment Staff are encouraged to book and pay for accommodation in advance of travel. Refer section 4.2 Refer: procedures for purchasing cards, section 2.4; and procedures for Staff Advances, section 4.5.1
Domestic travel meals and incidentals These would normally be paid by purchasing card; or with travel allowance funds. Refer: procedures for purchasing cards, section 4.4; and procedures for Staff Advances, section 4.5.1

International Travel

  Via PHT or STA Travel. Either the “pay on actuals” or “pay a daily meals and incidentals allowance” system will apply. Refer section 4.5.2. A travel diary must be kept in all cases.
International airfare Normally booked via PHT or STA. Use Travel Confirmation Form. Refer section 1.4.  
International accommodation As per domestic, above. As for domestic, above.
International travel meals and incidentals These would normally be paid for by purchasing card or with travel allowance funds.

Depending on the system:

“Pay on actuals” system:
- procedures as for Domestic. See above.

“Pay a daily allowance” system:
Refer sections 4.5.2 and 5.3.

Travel undertaken in the course a University Off-Shore teaching program Refer Policy and sections 4.5.2 and 5.3

1.4  Booking Domestic and International Travel via Travel Agent

This may be arranged either through Phil Hoffmann Travel or STA Travel , either online or by phone or fax, using the Travel Confirmation Form

1.4.1  The Travel Confirmation Form must be completed with full details of travel.

1.4.2  Travel approval and general ledger account number to be approved in writing by Authorised Person.

1.4.3  Travel Confirmation Form to be faxed to travel agent as confirmation of travel.

1.4.4  Confirmation form given to local accounts office to ensure all accounting requirements are met.

1.5  Booking domestic air travel on line

1.5.1  Written approval by Authorised Person must be given before booking travel.

1.5.2  Access the Phil Hoffmann website. Two options are available;

  • Qantas Red E-deals
  • Virgin Australia (refer 1.2.1(c))

1.5.3  You must acknowledge all restricted conditions when purchasing these cheaper airfares.

1.5.4  The University purchasing card may be used to purchase online discounted airfares when travelling on behalf of the University.

1.5.5  Confirmation of approval for travel will occur online when monthly reconciliation is authorised. Phil Hoffmann Travel will send tax invoice to client as confirmation of purchase.

1.5.6  Booking confirmation to be retained as backing documentation when reconciling purchasing card statement using Spendvision.

1.5.7  Confirmation form given to local accounts office to ensure all accounting requirements are met.


2. Preferred/approved travel suppliers

Preferred/Approved Travel Suppliers

In accordance with the University’s Policy on Travel, Accommodation and Subsistence a list of preferred/approved travel suppliers will be maintained. Details of these suppliers follow:

 Travel Agents

Name Contact 


Travel Type 

Phil Hoffmann Travel Pty Ltd

Cnr Jetty and Brighton Roads

Phone: 8179 9666

Domestic and International


STA Travel


University Mall
Flinders University
Phone: 8277 9611

Domestic and International



 Contact Details

Travel Type

 Qantas Airways Limited

144 North Terrace
Adelaide SA 5000
Phone: 8407 2233

Domestic and International

 Singapore Airlines Limited

Level 1, 50 King William Street
Adelaide SA 5000
Phone: 131 011


Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd

 Level 1, Aviation House
Andy Thomas Circuit
Adelaide Airport SA 5950
Phone: 131 747

Uni contact Roz Meertens

8234 3488 Ext 101


 Virgin Australia

 PO Box 1034

Spring Hill Qld 4004

 Domestic and International


Hotels and Cars
For more Hotel offers refer to the secure Procurement website


For hire cars refer to section 8 of the procedures



3.  International travel

3.1  Health & Safety and Duty of Care

3.1.1  All international University travel for staff, students and others must be approved by an Authorised Person in advance and before booking travel. Approval must be recorded in writing on the Travel Confirmation Form.

3.1.2  All international travel must be booked through an approved University travel agent
3.1.3  Any proposed travel to Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) Level 3 countries/areas must be approved in advance by the relevant Cost Centre Head, or in the case of the Senior Executive, by the Vice-Chancellor. Note: travel to DFAT level 4 countries/areas is not permitted.
3.1.4  Travellers are responsible for monitoring and adhering to the relevant DFAT Travel Advice and direction from their Cost Centre Head/Manager/Supervisor before they travel and whilst overseas. The DFAT travel advisory service is located at:http://www.smarttraveller.gov.au
3.1.5  The table below provides a guide to the action required for each type of DFAT travel advisory. Travellers must consider the specific advice provided on the DFAT website for the country(ies) to which they intend to travel.

DFAT Level 

Summary of DFAT Advice 

University requirements 

Exercise normal safety precautions
  • Travellers may wish to register for DFAT updates to travel advice.
  • Travellers may wish to register online with DFAT Smartraveller before travelling or with the nearest Australian embassy, high commission or consulate upon arrival. 
2 Exercise a high degree of caution
  • Travellers and Cost Centre Heads (or their nominee) must register for DFAT updates to travel advice.
  • Travellers must register online with DFAT Smartraveller before travelling. 
Reconsider your need to travel. 
  •  Travel must be approved by the Cost Centre Head or the Vice-Chancellor (for Senior Executive). 
  • The traveller must submit a risk analysis, supported by his/her manager/supervisor, with a description of steps to be taken to mitigate the risks should the travel proceed. See Risk Analysis below.
  • Cost Centre Heads/Vice-Chancellor must demonstrate due diligence in approving travel to, or allowing travellers to remain in, these countries.
  • Cost Centre Heads/Vice-Chancellor should not approve travel if, after considering the risk analysis and controls to be in place to mitigate the risks, he/she is not convinced about the relative safety of the travel.
  • Cost Centre Heads/Vice-Chancellor must provide documentation supporting the decision that travel is essential, and must include details of any additional health, safety or security precautions, if travel is approved.
  • Travellers must register for DFAT updates to travel advice.
  • Travellers must register online with DFAT Smartraveller before departure.   
Do not travel 
  •  Travel to this country(ies) is not permitted. If travel has already commenced, follow DFAT advice.  

3.1.6  A staff member or student is not required to travel to a destination which, in the view of either the person travelling or their Supervisor, poses an unacceptable risk to the individual or the University.

3.1.7  Travellers must register for University insurance prior to departure by completing an on-line application form if you have not booked your travel through FlindersPro.

3.1.8  Following online approval by the University’s Insurance Officer or via FlindersPro, a Travel Certificate and travel diary will be emailed to the traveller. The Travel Certificate includes details of assistance available to travellers and the emergency contact details.

3.1.9  Travellers need to be aware that Travel Insurance Policies (whether booked through the University or separately) normally contain exclusions which relate to travel to high-risk destinations and that these exclusions may prevent the reimbursement of prepaid costs.

3.1.10  Travellers must provide the Authorised Person with details of their full travel itinerary and contact information for the duration of the travel.

3.1.11  Staff must not undertake unauthorised business related activities while on recreation leave as they would not be protected by workers’ compensation in the event of an accident.

3.2  Risk Analysis

3.2.1  The following information is a guide to assist travellers and Authorised Persons (managers/supervisors) to undertake a risk analysis for proposed travel to DFAT level 3 countries/areas, and to assist Cost Centre Heads/the Vice-Chancellor to determine whether staff/students should be permitted to travel to and/or remain in DFAT level 3 countries/areas.

1.  Purpose of (and necessity for) travel.

2.  Nature of DFAT warning.

3.  What is in place to reduce the risk to health and safety in this instance?

For example:

  • Traveller can speak the language
  • Traveller has extensive in-country knowledge and experience
  • Proximity to location of concern
  • Reliable local contacts, guidance and/or supervision
  • Local guide/security firm engaged
  • Safe accommodation and other venues and safe transport
  • Prior training conducted
  • Prior health precautions taken (e.g. vaccinations)
  • Safety equipment provided
  • Arrangement in place for traveller to regularly check-in with Authorised Person
  • Evacuation contingency in place

4.   What is the impact of not being able to travel?

For example:

  • Course delivery interrupted
  • Inability to fulfill research commitments
  • Breach of contract
  • Inability to complete a course of study
  • Negative image/loss of reputation
  • Strategic alliance/relationship at risk
  • Potential liabilities or litigation
  • Financial loss
  • Loss of revenue
  • Loss of confidential information/data

5.   Attach documentation, addressing these matters and describing the steps to be taken to mitigate the risks, to the Travel Confirmation Form.

3.3  Travel Health

3.3.1  University travellers can receive travel related medical information, treatment and advice prior to traveling overseas on University business from the Travel Doctor. For further information see the travel health procedure.

3.3.2  Staff who have any pre-existing medical/health conditions must have clearance to travel from their GP or treating medical practitioner.


4. Payment of travel expenses

4.1  Airfares

These are generally paid direct by the University to the supplier, in advance of the travel, from the account number indicated on the Travel Confirmation Form or by purchasing card (in the case of on-line booking, in which case this is for domestic travel only.) The standard for all air travel is economy. 

4.2  Accommodation, meals and incidentals

Travel expenses may be paid as follows:

• invoice sent direct to Flinders University from travel agent 
• through the use of the University purchasing card
• by staff spending an advance paid by the University

However, travellers are encouraged to book and pay for accommodation before departure, either by use of the University purchasing card or by payment on invoice. Payment and acquittal options are set out below.

4.3  Other expenses

Where additional expenses are likely to occur, arrangements with regard to these must be agreed in advance with the Authorised Person and acquitted as indicated in section 5.2 (Examples include, tips, telephone calls (official and reasonable family-related), local transportation costs on official university business, dependant care expenses and car hire).

4.4  Purchasing Cards

The University purchasing card is the preferred option for use by staff members while travelling on behalf of the University.

4.4.1 The purchasing card can be used for travel expenses including;

• domestic flights booked on line
• accommodation including Airbnb
• meals and incidentals
• other travel related expenses such as taxis/Uber1
• conference registration

4.4.2 Consistent with all purchasing card procedures, reconciliations are to be completed on a monthly basis through Fraedom.

4.4.3 Tax invoices/receipts must be retained as backing documentation and to be expensed against staff member’s cost centre on reconciliation.

4.4.4 The University Purchasing Card must be used for legitimate University purchases only.

4.4.5 Mini bar purchases, private entertainment videos, lengthy telephone calls home – must be separated from accommodation account and paid by staff member as personal expense.

4.5  Staff Advances

4.5.1  Domestic Travel

The Travel Policy states that the University will meet the actual costs incurred by the staff member up to the standard rates. (Refer section 1.2.3)

(a) Advances are issued to staff members who require funds in advance for approved travel in circumstances where a purchasing card is not suitable.

(b) Staff requiring an advance will complete the Request for Staff Advance form including dates of departure and return.

(c) It is the responsibility of the staff member to check that the advance form is correctly coded and authorised, and that supporting documentation is provided.

(d) An invoice will be entered as a ‘Prepayment’ on the Flinders Finance system using the advance account code (3251). Procedures required to clear the advance will be forwarded with the cheque.

(e) Advance acquittal must be given to local accounts office to ensure all accounting requirements are met.

(f) Existing advances must be acquitted before any more advances or reimbursements are given to staff members.

4.5.2  International Travel 

In response to the greater complexity inherent in international travel, the Travel Policy provides two options for payment and acquittal of meals and incidentals expenses.

(a) “Pay on actuals” system
In this system the University will meet the actual costs incurred on meals and incidentals, up to the permitted standard rates. All meals and incidentals items of expenditure are to be acquitted.

Where a travel advance has been paid (rather than a University purchasing card used), any unspent monies for meals and incidentals must be returned to the University. Receipts must be included as part of acquittal.

(b) “Pay a daily allowance for meals and incidentals” system
In this system, the traveller must confirm that he/she undertook the travel itinerary/program indicated travel diary, boarding pass, receipts/documentation for non pre-paid accommodation. However, detailed acquittal of individual meals and incidentals is not required as this will be deemed to have occurred at the relevant standard rates for the destination country(refer 5.3).

The advantage of this system is that acquittal is simpler for the traveller and less onerous and time consuming for the administrative area responsible. However, a disadvantage is that such unacquitted expenditure attracts payroll tax of 4.95% from 1 July 2009, which is to be borne by the area concerned.

(c) Travel in connection with the policy on Off Shore Teaching – Conditions for Academic Staff
It should be noted that “Pay a daily allowance for meals and incidentals” system applies where staff are travelling for the purpose of off shore teaching (clause 7) in the policy .

(d) The Cost Centre Head will decide which system will be used, having regard to the nature of the activity, volume of travel in the work area and the cost effectiveness of each system.

(e) Travel diaries
Irrespective of the system used, a travel diary must be completed.


5.  Record keeping, acquittals and reimbursements for travel

5.1  Travel Diaries

5.1.1  Employees undertaking University travel must maintain a travel diary if travelling outside Australia or when combining business and private travel when travelling within Australia.

5.1.2  Staff must comply with the Combining Business and Private Travel Policy and Procedures to ensure that no FBT liability arises when a private component is to be added to travel on University business.

5.1.3  All staff members required to maintain a travel diary (see 5.1.1 above) must forward the completed diary to their local accounts office within 14 days of completing travel, along with a copy of the itinerary or other relevant documents (e.g. conference agenda). The diary will be checked at the local accounts office for correct account numbers, completeness and any private travel component, noting that private travel should be planned in advance of a trip, in accordance with the Combining Business and Private Travel Policy and Procedures. 

5.2  “Pay on actuals” system (domestic and international travel)

To claim expenses staff members must submit a claim (with supporting documentation) including travel diary where required) via the Expense Reimbursement process.

5.3  “Pay a daily allowance for meals and incidentals” system (international travel only)

Staff members should use account code ‘2023 – per diem allowance unacquitted)’ when acquitting expenditure for meals and incidentals while travelling on behalf of the University.

The Unacquitted Per Diem should be used as required in 4.2 above, except that individual receipts for meals and incidentals are not required. A travel diary must be completed (refer 5.1)

5.4  Unspent advance

For domestic travel and international travel using the “pay on actuals” system, the balance of any advance unspent must be returned to the University, either by making a payment at the Banking and Receipting Office, or at the local accounts area. Payment can be made by cash, cheque or personal credit card. All cheques are to be made payable to ‘Flinders University’. The account number “2099 - travel recoup” and tax code “N/A” for the receipt. Receipt must be included as part of acquittal.

5.5  Expenditure in excess of standard rates 

If a staff member has spent in excess of the standard rates, then he or she will be required to demonstrate to the Authorised Person that the expenditure was justified in the circumstances. Receipts must be provided to substantiate the expenses.

5.5.1  Excess expenditure not approved by Authorised Person
If expenditure was incurred on the University purchasing card in excess of the standard rates, or for non approved items, the amount must be repaid to the University by the staff member responsible, within 14 days. Receipt must be kept as supporting documentation.

Payment should be made to the Banking and Receipting Office or local accounts area, and may be made by cash, cheque or personal credit card. All cheques are to be made payable to ‘Flinders University’.

If the staff member has incurred the excess expenditure using personal funds, additional funding from the University to cover the amount would not be available.

5.5.2  Excess expenditure approved by authorised person

The staff member must submit a claim via the Expense Reimbursement process for the additional expenditure, including all supporting documentation.

5.6  Unacquitted advances

Please note that subsequent advances and reimbursements will not be issued until any outstanding advance is acquitted.

5.7  Supporting documentation

5.7.1  Supporting documentation must be originals of tax invoices/receipts. Refer to web site for requirements of a Tax Compliant Invoice.  A faxed copy may be used when it is the only documentation received from the supplier.

5.7.2  All receipts/tax invoices must be made out to the staff member and not other family members, partners or friends. Only the staff member’s portion of the expenses are to be used to acquit a staff advance.

5.7.3  For expenses within Australia, tax invoices are required for all expenditure >$82.50 GST inclusive so that Flinders University can claim reimbursement for the GST portion. For expenses incurred in Australia <$82.50 GST inclusive, GST can be claimed, provided a receipt is available and GST was incurred.

5.7.4  If no receipt can be obtained eg. taxi fares in Asia, staff members should include a description of these expenses with the claim for reimbursement.  Reimbursement of such expenses will be subject to the approval of the staff member's supervisor.  

5.7.5  If the University has only made a contribution towards a staff member’s travel expenses, staff in the Faculties/Portfolios can mark the original paperwork as being partially reimbursed, and give the original documentation back to the staff member.


6. Travel Health

University travellers can obtain travel related medical information, treatment and advice prior to travelling overseas on University business from the University's Health Service or The Travel Doctor.  

6.1  Health Service

The University Health Service is able to meet all travel health requirements for staff and students travelling overseas.  This includes expert advice and a range of on-site travel related vaccines.  All services are bulk-billed.

6.2  The Travel Doctor Services

The University will, in most instances, cover the cost of visits to The Travel Doctor by staff travelling on University business, including:

  • Standard travel consultations;
  • Targeted travel health medicals; and
  • Vaccines and anti-malarial prophylaxis (where required)

Any other services (or products), including first aid kits, insect repellent, nets etc, must be paid for the by the individual staff member.

The services available to staff are as follows:

Travel consultation

This appointment would usually last for between 20-30minutes and would include the provision of general health education information, such as:

  • Travel advisory information; and
  • A copy of the International Health Guide.

As a result of this consultation staff may also be advised to obtain vaccinations which can be provided by The Travel Doctor. 

Targeted travel health medicals

The Travel Doctor advises that as a general rule they would only recommend this service for staff who are planning on being away for in-excess of 3 months, or frequent travellers (those who make more than 4 trips per year).

Procedures for obtaining these services

a)  The staff member makes an appointment with The Travel Doctor that would include them detailing the services they require (as detailed above).  The contact details of the Adelaide Clinic are:

53-67 Hindmarsh Square
Adelaide SA 5000
ph: (08) 8223 6225
fax: (08) 8232 2354

email: adelaide@traveldoctor.com.au

The Travel Doctor also has other offices, the locations of which are detailed on their web site. Please note that if you intend to visit a Travel Doctor clinic outside of Adelaide you should check that they have the necessary arrangements in place so that you are not charged for the cost of your visit.

Staff who are considering making an appointment with the Travel Doctor should discuss it with their supervisor before taking further action.

b)  On arrival for their appointment, the staff member presents their staff ID Card, and states which Flinders Cost Centre or Faculty they are from. 

If staff have a corporate purchasing card they should make payment using the card.  Otherwise the Travel Doctor will arrange for invoices to be forwarded to the appropriate Cost Centre/Faculty of the University for payment.


7.  Insurance

7.1 Information about our insurance policy document, schedule of benefits and a list of frequently asked questions are available from the University Insurance Officer and the insurance web page.

7.2 Staff members are automatically covered with insurance when travelling within Australia on behalf of the University.

7.3 Staff members travelling overseas must register for insurance prior to departure by completing an on-line application form.

Following on-line approval by the Insurance officer, a Travel Certificate and a travel diary will be emailed to the staff member.

7.4 The procedure for making an insurance claim is set out on the insurance web page 


8. Rental cars

Staff members must quote specific codes to obtain appropriate discounted government rates from the car hire company and arrange for direct payment by the University to the rental agency or by purchasing card.

8.1  Thrifty

Flinders is part of the HES Contract with rental car provider Thrifty.  Their website is http://www.thrifty.com.au/

There are 2 Corporate Discount (CD) numbers set up for Flinders University as follows:

4908002710     Credit Card Rentals

4909296957     Charge back (invoiced) rentals

Booking reservation number for Thrifty is 1300365564 and direct access to Thrifty's booking page and our rates can be found at -


Staff discounts for private travel are available by quoting Corporate Discount (CD) number 4908002504.  This is a credit card only account so please have your card ready when you make your booking.

8.2  Avis

An agreement has been reached with Avis for car hire.

For further information refer to the Procurement site.


9. Qantas Club

9.1  Qantas Airways Limited, as a preferred supplier of travel services to the University, provides discount corporate rates for membership to the Qantas Club.

9.2  In accordance with the Travel Policy, applications or enquiries for membership may be submitted to People and Culture via email to pc@flinders.edu.au or ring 8201 3759.

9.3  Applications should include approval from the Cost Centre Head and the account number from which the membership is to be paid.

9.4   The University will facilitate staff taking out their own membership of Qantas Club, and therefore enjoying the University's corporate discount.  To comply with Qantas Club requirements, the individual will be required to pay for the membership from their personal credit card.

Where staff are paying for Qantas Club membership personally, ie not from University funds, credit card details must not be emailed.  This is because under the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards, email is not considered a secure communicated method.

9.5   Annual renewals of club membership are managed by the Director, People and Culture Division.


10. Tax information

10.1  FBT may be incurred where private travel has occurred in conjunction with University business travel, or where substantiation requirements have not been met.  Staff should refer to the Combining Business and Private Travel Policy and Procedures to ensure that no FBT liability arises when a private travel component is added to travel on University business.

10.2  Where substantiation requirements are not met the Tax Manager or relevant administrative staff member will calculate the amount the employee will be required to reimburse the University (for but not limited to flight costs) to reduce any potential FBT liability to nil.  Accounts will raise an invoice to the employee for payment within the time specified in Fringe Benefit Tax Policy and Procedures.

Further information about FBT is available on the University’s web site.

10.3  Payroll Tax is to be charged against the cost centre in the instance when the per diem rate has not been acquitted, as explained in section 4.5.2.

10.4  Contact the Tax Manager, Financial Services Division, regarding taxation queries.


1  (Uber is legal in all Australian states and territories except for the NT)