Policy - TCard

Travel Cards (TCards) are for business use only!

Travel Cards issued by US Bank are special VISA credit cards. They work similarly to your personal credit cards, except the charges are billed directly to the University and paid by the University Business Office. The U of A supports two types of cards:

  • Administrative Travel Card
  • Traveler Travel Card

Administrative TCard

Allows for the purchase of airfare, registration, car rentals, for individuals traveling on behalf of the U of A, and lodging as long as it is only room and tax and as long as the hotel allows for prepayment of lodging WITHOUT the actual credit card.  This should only be used though when the traveler requires assistance and is unable to pay for their lodging and claim reimbursement.   Not all hotels allow this, so it is important to know if the hotel has this option when setting up hotel arrangements.  In most instances, the traveler will pay their lodging and claim reimbursement after the trip.   This can include employee, student, and guest travel as long as it is for a valid business trip and a Travel Authorization has been entered in BASIS for the individual.

The Administrative TCard is normally in the name of the individual within a department who is responsible for the processing of travel related tasks.  Remember:  The person whose name is on the card is responsible for charges incurred. 

Charges incurred on the Administrative TCard are downloaded daily to the UPS application within BASIS and approved by an individual within the department.  The documentation associated with the charge is then sent to the Travel Office with the Document Number written on the document.

Traveler TCard

Employees who travel a minimum of 3 times per year with travel expenses of approximately $2,000 per year will be eligible for a Traveler TCard, if the employee AND their department elect.

The employee will have the option of not only charging airfare and registration, but also hotel, car rental, meals, etc. to their TCard.Unlike the Administrative TCard though, ANY charge incurred will download as a receivable to the CARDHOLDER The cardholder is to ONLY incur charges on this TCard that directly relate to a trip that they are on!

NEVER charge items on the Traveler TCard that relate to someone else's travel unless this a GROUP Travel and the cardholder is the responsible party for group!!

Charges incurred against a Traveler TCard are offset by the filing of the cardholder's Travel Claim. Any amount still owed by the cardholder, will be billed to the cardholder by the Treasurer's Office. (Similar to a Travel Advance)


Improper use of the Travel Card will result in consequences ranging from suspension of card to termination of employment and possible criminal prosecution.

Any individual for which a Travel Card is going to be requested must first complete an online Procurement Authorization within the BASIS system. Once this Procurement Authorization has been submitted and approved by the Cost Center managers for the default cost center entered via TARGET, the Travel Office will verify that the proposed cardholder will either be making the airline reservations for the department OR has sufficient travel to warrant having a card. Information will then be given to US Bank to setup a cardholder account.

For a Step by Step of how to enter a Procurement Authorization please see How to Submit a Procurement Authorization Prospective Cardholders MUST attend a training session and sign a Cardholder Agreement Form before receiving their Travel Card.

Travel Cards are not transferable. If someone's card use is discontinued, the Travel Card MUST be sent to the 'administrator' of the Travel Card program, or shredded, the Travel Office notified, and the Procurement Authorization in BASIS must be cancelled.  The Travel Office will cancel the card with the bank.

The following limits are the maximum amounts allowable for a Travel Card per month. When the Procurement Authorization is requested, these amounts may be lowered.

  • Monthly Transaction Limit: $5,000
  • Per Transaction Limit $2,000

(The Travel Office may increase the monthly amount if the need warrants)

University Travel Cardholders are responsible for:

  1. Attending training and signing Cardholder Agreement PRIOR to issuance of a Travel Card.
  2. Keeping their Travel Card and Card Account Number confidential. The only person authorized to use a Travel Card is the person to whom it is issued.
  4. Understanding that intentional misuse or abuse of the Travel Card will result in the immediate revocation of charging privileges and possible disciplinary and criminal prosecution.
  5. Obtaining detailed receipts, when applicable, and turning those receipts into the person in their department responsible for approving the charges in the BASIS system, if charges were incurred on an Administrative TCard.  Charges MUST be approved prior to 4:30 pm on the day of the Cut-Off date assigned in BASIS.  Failure to approve your charges will result in a warning for the first offense, with cancellation of your ADMN TCard if you have more than 3 cut-off dates with unapproved charges over a 6 month span. 
  6. Obtaining receipts and turning those receipts into the person who is responsible for processing the Travel Claim, if charges were incurred on a Traveler TCard.
  7. Reporting a lost or stolen Travel Card immediately to the Travel Card Administrator at 479-575-7951 or 8414 and US Bank at 1-800-344-5696.
  8. Not accepting cash in lieu of a credit to the Travel Card account when returns are made.
  9. State Travel Regulations state that the Travel Claim should be filed within 15 days after the return of the trip.  The Travel Office will be monitoring the charges associated with the Traveler TCard and will process a payroll deduction for Traveler TCard charges, if the Travel Claim is not processed in a timely manner.

The employee whose name appears on the Travel Card is authorized and responsible for all charges on the card. It is the responsibility of every Cardholder to safeguard their card and card number against use by unauthorized individuals within or outside of the University.

Under no circumstances may the Travel Card be used for items of personal use or used when NOT on official University Travel.

The employee whose name appears on the Travel Card is authorized and responsible for all charges on the card. It is the responsibility of every Cardholder to safeguard their card and card number against use by unauthorized individuals within or outside of the University.

Under no circumstances may the Travel Card be used for items of personal use or used when NOT on official University Travel.

Allowable Purchases for Administrative TCard

  • Airfare
  • Registration
  • Car Rental
  • Hotel (Room & tax only)  Only if the hotel allows this purchase without having a physical card.

Airfare, registration, car rental, and hotel may be purchased for any traveler for which a valid Travel Authorization is entered in BASIS for the trip. These charges are approved online in BASIS and supporting documentation sent to the Travel Office.

NOTE: Membership fee made be paid in conjunction with registration fee ONLY if it is a requirement to purchase the registration.

The employee whose name appears on the Travel Card is authorized and responsible for all charges on the card. It is the responsibility of every Cardholder to safeguard their card and card number against use by unauthorized individuals within or outside of the University.

Under no circumstances may the Travel Card be used for items of personal use or used when NOT on official University  Travel.

Allowable Purchases for a Traveler TCard

  • Airfare
  • Registration
  • Hotel
  • Meals (traveler only or Guest Meal that qualifies as an official business function)
  • Car Rental
  • Gas
  • Taxi
  • Parking
  • Other valid travel related expenses (supplies/internet related to travel, etc.)

REMEMBER: The only time the Traveler TCard is to be utilized is for travel for the CARDHOLDER, unless the Cardholder is also responsible for a Group Travel.

Detailed receipts, when applicable, are attached to the Travel Claim and sent to the Travel Office for processing against the Travel Claim.

NOTE: Membership fees may be paid in conjunction with registration fee ONLY if it is a requirement to purchase the registration.

NOTE: Local official functions (meals) may NOT be charged to the t-card. Traveler's MUST be in travel status (a distance of over 10 hours/200 miles round trip) to use the card for an official function.

The Travel Card MUST never be used to purchase items that are NOT associated with a valid Travel Authorization, even if the cardholder intends to reimburse the University.

The purchase of first class tickets is not allowable without express approval from the U of A Travel Office. Purchase of a first class ticket without prior approval by U of A Travel Office will result in immediate cancellation of the cardholder's TCard.

Preferred seating is not allowable (If medical condition PRIOR approval from Travel Office must be granted with approved documentation)

TSA Pre check fee is NOT allowable

Upgrades to airfare for the personal comfort of traveler is not allowable (example:  upgrading to an economy plus fare for additional leg room)

A cardholder who makes an unauthorized purchase with a Travel Card, or uses the Travel Card in an inappropriate manner, will be subject to loss of any authority to retain or use the Travel Card; disciplinary action up to and including termination; and possible criminal prosecution and restitution.

When purchasing Airline Tickets, the Travel Card may be used to purchase airfare through a Travel Agency or an internet site in good standing.

If you are ordering over the phone you should provide:

  • Account Number
  • Card Expiration Date
  • Provide complete billing and delivery address

Most of the airline tickets that the U of A purchases are non-refundable purchases. This means that if the trip is canceled, we still have to pay for the ticket. In many instances though, a portion of the value of the ticket can be used on another trip.

If purchasing the ticket with an Administrative TCard you will still approve the charge on EIC along with entering the TA number that was approved for the trip. (Make sure the TA is still in an 'open' status). In the extended description document that the trip was canceled and that at some point in the future, a portion of the dollar value of this ticket will be used on another trip.

If airfare was purchased with a Traveler TCard and the trip was not taken, a Travel Claim must still be filed in order to offset the airfare charge, if the U of A is not going to receive a refund. This is the only way that the 'receivable' will be offset. Otherwise the cardholder will receive an invoice from the Treasurer's Office for the amount of the ticket.

This is also true for other prepaid items, such as Registrations.

Whether a purchase is made in person or via telephone, internet, fax, or mail, the Cardholder is responsible for obtaining purchase documentation from the merchant. The following types of purchases will REQUIRE receipt documentation.

Administrative TCard

Airfare: The following information MUST be clearly identified on the documentation:

  • Passenger Name
  • Dates of Travel
  • Destination
  • Cost of Ticket
  • Merchant Name


  • Name of person who is registered
  • Cost of the Registration
  • Name of the Meeting, Conference, etc

Car Rental Receipt

Itemized Lodging Receipt ONLY for room and tax.  If the ADMN TCard is used for Lodging and the receipt contains items other than room and tax, this will result in Lodging being removed from the ADMN TCard for future use.

Traveler TCard

  • Itemized Lodging Receipt
  • Itemized Car Rental Receipt
  • Registration Form and Receipt
  • Airfare with all information
  • Other receipts as deemed appropriate per Travel Regulations

These documents MUST be given to the administrative person in your department responsible for filing your Travel Claim for expenses related to trip.

When charges are approved, on the Administrative TCard the document number assigned to the charge, Example: T49494, should be written on the receipt and either sent to the Travel Office for scanning OR attached to the Statement of Traveling Expenses.

If a cardholder does not submit the required documentation along with their Travel Claim within a timely fashion after the end of the trip (usually within 5 days) a written warning will be sent to the cardholder for the first offense. Habitual failure to submit documentation will result in the suspension of the card; the user and their TARGET approver will be notified by e-mail. To reinstate privileges, a memo from a user's TARGET approver giving adequate justification will be required and all TCard supporting documentation submitted to bring the cardholder's reconciliations up to date. Upon receipt and approval of that justification, the Business Office will establish a time for the user to attend Travel Card training again.

If using a Traveler TCard and detailed receipts, when applicable, are not included with the Travel Claim, the Travel Claim will not be processed until the receipts, or justification for lost receipts, has been obtained.

If the cardholder and the supplier cannot resolve the issue, a Cardholder Dispute Form must be completed and mailed or faxed to the Travel Card Administrator, Carol Wade, at Travel Office, ADMN 317, or fax 575-2838. She will forward this request to US Bank for action.

  • Regardless of the status of the dispute, payment will be made to US Bank. Adjustments will be made upon resolution.

Cardholders are required to immediately report any lost or stolen Travel Card to US Bank toll-free at 1-800-344-5696 (24 hours a day, 365 days a year). The cardholder MUST also immediately notify the Travel Card Administrator at the first opportunity during normal U of A business hours at 479-575-7951 or 8414.

The ADMN TCard documentation must be received in the Travel Office within 2 weeks of the cut-off date.  Failure to provide appropriate documentation may result in the cancellation of your ADMN TCard.

The Travel Office will also run an audit report to identify any ADMN TCard charges that have been assigned to a Blanket Travel Authorization where no Travel Claim has been processed. 

The Travel Office will also monitor the download of Traveler TCard charges to insur that the charges are related to valid business trips and that the Travel Claim and any amounts still owed by the Traveler are reimbursed in a timely manner.

Internal and Legislative Auditors will also be reviewing TCard receipts for compliance.

If at any point, the Travel Office feels that the employee is not following the guidelines set forth in the use of either the ADMN TCard or the Traveler TCard, the card will be cancelled.