International Travel

Responsible Officer: Vice President for Business Affairs and Controller

Sponsoring Department: Travel

Revision Date: 13 May 2013

Errors or changes to: aim@uta.edu

Procedure Objective

Procedure 2-83 provides procedural guidelines for international travel in accordance with applicable laws and rules. International travel is travel to any country outside of the United States, Mexico, Canada, and U.S. possessions. This procedure details how to request approval for international travel, how to convert and interpret travel receipts and an explanation of International SOS, the vendor contracted by the UT System to provide international assistant services.

Rationale

Rules and policies governing the approval and definition of international travel come from a variety of sources including the State of Texas Travel Regulations Act (Chapter 660 of the Texas Government Code) and the Board of Regents' Rules and Regulations. These rules and policies define international travel as travel to, in, or from a destination that is neither in the United States, nor a possession of the United States, Mexico or Canada. To assist university employees with calls for help, advice and medical response when traveling internationally, this procedure explains the organization that the UT System has contracted with to provide international assistant services to its employees and students when traveling on university business.

Scope

All UT Arlington employees and students who are traveling internationally for UT Arlington business.

Related Statutes, Policies, Requirements or Standards

Contacts

If you have any questions about UT Arlington Procedure 2-83 contact the following departments:

SubjectOffice NameTelephone NumberEmail/URL
All topics in procedureProcurement Services817-272-2194travel_help@uta.edu
http://www.uta.edu/policy/bac/travel
Website accessAdministrative Information Management817-272-0222aim@uta.edu
http://www.uta.edu/aim

Definitions

International Travel: Travel to any country outside of the United States, Mexico, Canada, and U.S. Possessions.

State Funds: Accounts that are funded by State general revenue. Most State Fund accounts begin with "14" and are referred to as "14 accounts". State Fund accounts also appear in other numbered account series.

The Request for Travel Authorization (VE5): This document is used in *DEFINE to authorize travel for employees, prospective employees, students, and non-employees who are traveling for UT Arlington business.

Travel Payment Voucher (VP5): This document is used in *DEFINE to reimburse business travel expenses. The VP5 document is used to provide a detailed record of the travel expenses as well as identify the nature of the business conducted.

Responsibilities

The Traveler and/or the Individuals Responsible for Completing the Travel Voucher (VP5)
  • Obtains approval (if using state appropriated funds) from the Vice President for Research before traveling internationally
  • Obtains receipts of all expenditures while traveling
  • Converts all receipts obtained while traveling to US dollars
  • Completes the Travel Voucher (VP5) upon return from traveling
  • Obtains approval from the UT Arlington International Oversight Committee before traveling to any country listed on the U.S. State Department Travel Warning list
  • Obtains International SOS registration prior to traveling internationally
Vice President for Research
  • Approves requests for international travel that use state appropriated funds
International Oversight Committee
  • Approves requests for travel to countries listed on the U.S. State Department Travel Warning list
  • Issues travel recalls from countries put on the U.S. State Department Travel Warning list if threat assessment warrants recall
International SOS
  • Provides 24-hour medical response and international assistance to UT Arlington employees and students that are traveling internationally on university business.

Procedures


Section I. Approval for International Travel using State Appropriated Funds

If using state appropriated funds, the Travel Authorization (VE5) is to be pre-approved by a person authorized by the President of the University to act in the official capacity of approving international travel (does not include Alaska, Hawaii, U.S. possessions, Canada or the United Mexican States.) Currently the Vice President for Research is authorized to approve international travel using state appropriated funds. Contact the Office of the Vice President for Research for details.

Section II. Approval for Travel to countries on the U.S. State Department Travel Warning List

Travel to countries where a travel warning has been issued by the U.S. Department of State is prohibited, unless a specific exemption is approved by the UT Arlington International Oversight Committee (IOC) prior to travel. The countries on the current travel warning list may be found on the U.S. Department of State website. Countries on the travel warning list may include Canada or the United Mexican States (Mexico). Requests for exemptions for travel to countries listed on the travel warning website should be directed to the UT Arlington IOC chairman at horn@uta.edu.

If the U.S. Department of State issues a travel warning, any program not started and any participant or employee planned travel that has not occurred is automatically suspended pending review by the UT Arlington IOC. Programs or travel in progress when the warning is issued will be evaluated by the UT Arlington IOC to determine whether the threat is imminent and personnel and students should be recalled.

Section III. Receipts

Receipts from international travel (does include Canada and the United Mexican States) must be converted to US dollars. See the website http://www.oanda.com/currency/converter/for an easy-to-use converter.

  1. Date of the conversion should be the date money was exchanged (attach receipt) or the date of the charge (Example: settlement date of a hotel bill). Screen print the information obtained from the website and attach to the Travel Voucher (VP5). Also a copy of the monthly credit card statement showing the billing in dollars can be used.

  2. Note: Be especially careful to obtain receipts of all expenditures. It is very difficult to obtain these after returning.

  3. It is also, helpful for the traveler to interpret each receipt by making a note of the total paid and state the reason for the expense. Example: Hotel bill- xxxx daily room charge- xxxx daily room taxes.

Section IV. International SOS Registration

The UT System Office of Risk Management has a contract with International SOS. Registration with International SOS is required for faculty, staff, and all students traveling internationally on university-sponsored trips (does include Canada and the United Mexican States) prior to travel. International SOS automatically receives traveler information from our travel agencies, Corporate Travel Planners (CTP) and Anthony Travel, Inc (ATI). International SOS will send a membership card, security and medical alerts, and country guides to the traveler as soon as the trip is booked. Any traveler who uses CTP and/or ATI will be automatically registered with International SOS and can be tracked and easily located while traveling. If a traveler has obtained permission not to use CTP or ATI for booking travel, the traveler must still register with International SOS by accessing the UT System portal at http://www.internationalsos.comand using the UT System membership number 11BSGC000037 to complete a registration.

International SOS is a comprehensive, 24-hour medical response organization that provides international assistance services to leading multinational corporations, insurers, and financial institutions, as well as governmental and non-governmental organizations. The backbone of the worldwide International SOS servicing infrastructure consists of multilingual Alarm Centers on duty 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. International SOS responds to calls for help and advice from students, travelers, and expatriates, managing the simplest task such as doctor referral to the most complex emergency evaluation.

A summary of the specific coverages and services offered under the Scholastic Comprehensive Service Program are provided below:

  1. Medical Evaluation
    1. Insured- Medically supervised repatriation

    2. Insured- Repatriation of mortal remains

    3. Insured- Return of Minors

    4. 24-hour access to worldwide SOS Alarm Centers staffed with multilingual coordinators and international SOS physicians who provide medical information as well as medical and dental referrals

    5. Access to International SOS medical clinics worldwide

    6. Inpatient and outpatient case management and medical monitoring services

    7. Inpatient and outpatient medical expense guarantee and payment

    8. Dispatch of prescription medication and medical equipment

  2. Security Evaluation
    1. Insured Security Evacuations

    2. Travel Security Information

    3. 24-hour access to International SOS Crisis Centers

    4. Security Evacuation Assistance and Coordination

    5. Security Surveys & Emergency Response Planning

    6. Automatic Email Alerts and Warnings

  3. On-Line Features
    1. Scholastic Portal

    2. Custom Communication Portal

    3. Personal Travel Record for Tracking Student and Employee Destinations

    4. Emergency Record/Vaccination Management Program

    5. Email Alerts

    6. Country Guides

    7. Security On-Line

  4. Advance Payments

    Although the International SOS program does not provide any direct insurance for medical expenses, advance cash payments to members or medical providers are available through the program if necessary. International SOS will then request reimbursement from UT System and will assist UT System with obtaining and translating medical documentation for the insurance claim submission.

  5. Coverage for Travelers other than Faculty, Staff, or Students

    We recommend that all travel companions accompanying a covered individual on a trip abroad purchase an individual International SOS membership. This will ensure that travel companions have access to these services in case they experience a medical or security emergency. A travel companion can obtain a quote for an individual membership at the website below. By entering the UT System's membership number, under the preferred pricing field, travel companions can receive a 20% discount off the membership cost. This discount is available to employees and their families for leisure travel as well.

    The International SOS website, membership number 11BSGC000037, has valuable travel, security and medical information for the specific destinations and is an excellent resource for pre-trip planning.

Appendices

None