In arranging for guests to travel to UCLA, you must coordinate closely with the guest and (usually) with the UCLA Travel Center.
Tickets can be purchased either by:
- the guest, who will then be reimbursed; or
- using UCLA Travel Center's Direct Billing System (DBS).
If the guest prefers to purchase his/her own ticket, make sure to instruct them to seek the lowest possible fare, and to keep all ticket stubs and receipts to be mailed back to you at the conclusion of the trip.
If the guest prefers to purchase his/her own ticket, it is your responsibility to see that the cost is indeed "the lowest possible" or is otherwise reasonable. In any case, reimbursement will not be possible unless the ticket meets UCLA policy. Assuring the cost of the ticket can be accomplished by agreeing to the cost beforehand, or by setting a dollar limit on what you will reimburse, or by letting your guest know that your center/program will only reimburse no more than the equivalent of a ticket that could be obtained through the UCLA Travel Center. Make your requirments clear to the traveler; avoid misunderstandings.
Meeting UCLA Policy
If you arrange a ticket through the UCLA Travel Center via the DBS, you can assume that the ticket meets UCLA travel policy. Furthermore, the Travel Center has available numerous discounted airfares (so called State fares, etc. -- see below), which will be of benefit to you and the traveler (since many of these special fares permit changes that are not available when tickets are bought on the market).
If the traveler purchases his/her own ticket, you cannot assume the ticket meets UCLA travel policy. All reimbursement is done through the UCLA Travel Center. If a ticket does not meet UCLA travel policy, you will have a problem: either the Travel Center will not reimburse the ticket, or it may reimburse it only partially, or there may be other difficulties. UCLA travel policy and procedure is available on the Travel Center website.
Exceptions to policy: Sometimes, for various reasons, you may want either to purchase a ticket that does not meet policy or reimburse such a ticket. In this case, you may may request a exception to policy by writing to Rebecca Beatty (Director of Business & Administrative Services) firstname.lastname@example.org. If you need an exception to policy, be sure to request and obtain it before you arrange for travel.
Non-resident Aliens: If your traveler is not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, before committing to a ticket be sure you have taken all the steps necessary for the traveler to obtain the appropriate visa.
For more information and reservations, contact:
UCLA Travel Center
UCLA Travel Center
The UCLA Travel Center -- “The Official Travel Agency of UCLA” -- is responsible for:
- Processing and auditing of Travel Vouchers (soon to be replaced by Expense Reports)
- UCLA Corporate Card -- A GE MasterCard is available to University travelers free of charge as a tool for charging business travel and entertainment expenses.
- Direct Billing System (DBS) -- DBS enables centers/programs to order airline tickets and have the UCLA Travel Center make payment directly to the vendor, thereby relieving the traveler of any financial burden. The Direct Billing System can only be used for tickets issued by the UCLA Travel Center. A PAC Order must be in place before any ticket can be issued.
There is a service fee for tickets issued through the DBS
- Discounts and Contract Rates: The Travel Center has available a wide variety of discounted rates for air tickets, hotel, car rentals, etc.
- Recent bulletins on travel information and policy, as well as University policy and procedures concerning travel, are on the Travel Center website
- UCLA contract air fares are unrestricted and not subject to limited seating: travelers may change flights, tickets may be returned for refunds, etc. Tickets bought on the market may, in some cases, be a few dollars cheaper, but in return they will likely have many restrictions.
- The Travel Center website has links to many valuable travel resources (foreign currency exchange rates, federal per diem rates, etc. etc.)