Generally, a travel voucher should only contain charges and reimbursements related to one specific travel event (e.g., all travel items related to one conference). A separate travel voucher is required for a separate travel event. An exception exists for mileage reimbursement only requests. For a mileage only reimbursement, multiple locations and multiple dates can be added on one travel voucher, including any miscellaneous expenses related to the mileage reimbursement (e.g., tolls etc.). Please use first and last date of all the travel dates included or first and last date of the month for which mileage reimbursement is submitted in the Details of Travel Section. In the Mileage Details and Miscellaneous Expense sections would list each date of travel as may be traveling to different locations. If departing/returning to same location on same day, you may include the total miles roundtrip in one travel date, but please put in a mileage clarifying comment to inform reviewers/approvers of travel.
Employee Travel Frequently Asked Questions
Electronic Travel Voucher
Yes, an Electronic Travel Voucher can be saved to a local workstation as a PDF. There is a ‘Print' button provided on the top and bottom of the travel voucher that allows for the voucher to be saved to a local workstation. We highly recommend using the ‘Print to PDF' option to save the PDF version of the voucher and avoid printing it unless absolutely required.
If the student travelers are employed by the university, then they are considered employee. If not, then they are considered non-employee.
Yes, that would work, so would a copy of the registration or copy of the website with the conference information, etc.
A traveler should complete a travel voucher submission in one sitting before the OnBase system times out in about an hour from starting. Unfortunately, there is no option for the traveler to save and come back to the voucher at a later point in time. But preparers can edit a submitted travel voucher before the traveler signs it after which, the travel voucher is locked from editing.
If a preparer (non-traveler) wants to save the voucher to return to later for updating, the preparer may leave the preparer information blank at bottom of travel voucher form (do not sign), then click on submit. You will then receive an email notification with the link to the voucher. You can click on this link at any time to make updates to the travel voucher as needed. Once the voucher is complete and ready to go to the traveler for signature, the preparer can click on the "preparer sign" task button and enter their ID. Once you click ok, a message will appear stating that the voucher is being sent to the traveler, and the voucher will no longer be available in the preparer's queue.
If a notification is missing from the inbox of someone who is expected to approve a travel voucher, it is recommended to first check spam and junk folders. If notification is found in these folders, mark them as safe so that from next time they will be directed to the user's inbox. If the email is not found in those folders, please submit a ticket with the service desk and the OnBase team will be able to investigate the issue. Please note that sometimes the notifications might take up to 15 minutes to be sent after an action is taken.
A "New Travel Voucher" type will be used when a traveler is requesting reimbursement for a travel event that has not been previously submitted for reimbursement. An "Additional Pay Travel Voucher" is used when a traveler is requesting reimbursement for a previously submitted travel voucher that was only partially reimbursed. The original travel voucher and documentation should be resubmitted, noting the original travel voucher ID and request for remaining reimbursement for an "Addt'l Pay" voucher listed in the Business Purpose of Travel. A "Supporting Document Update" type is used when a travel voucher has been returned to the Traveler/Preparer by the approver or APS requesting additional supporting documentation. Before returning the travel voucher, the traveler would click on the "Supporting Documents Update" making appropriate comments on the form as needed.
Click on approve/deny task button. You will get an option to approve or deny the travel voucher.
If approve the travel voucher, the voucher proceeds for additional approval if needed and then sends to Accounts Payable for review upon approval completion. If deny the travel voucher, you will be given the option to add a comment and then will return the form to the traveler/preparer for editing.
Note: Denying the travel voucher does not cancel it. Rather, it only returns the form to the traveler. Only the traveler or travel voucher preparer can cancel it.
Make sure you are in OnBase workflow when viewing the travel voucher and not document retrieval. To access a travel voucher you may click on the link received in the email notification or login into onbase.niu.edu. The form will open after you log in.
If you are accustomed to working in OnBase, you can also navigate to the form without using the link in a notification. Once logged into the OnBase Web Client, click on the menu icon (the "hamburger" icon) in the upper left corner of the screen, next to Document Retrieval, then click on "Open Workflow" to see vouchers in your queue. Click on a travel voucher form within workflow and you should now be able to see the task buttons.
There may be several reasons:
- Your session has timed out. OnBase form sessions time out after about an hour or so, often a bit longer, and at that point you will need to start your travel voucher again. Working on the travel voucher refreshes the timer, but leaving the form idle for a long time will cause it to time out.
- You are encountering browser issues.
- First ensure you are using one of the following browsers supported by OnBase system.
- Chrome: version 80+
- Edge on Chromium: versions 79+
- Firefox: version 68+, 68 ESR
- Internet Explorer: version 11
- Safari: versions 13+ (macOS)
- Next clear your browser history and cache.
- Try a different web browser. Chrome and Firefox have been the most consistent performers with OnBase.
- If still unable to upload documents, use the go link directly, http://go.niu.edu/APTravelVoucher instead of the link on the travel web page.
- First ensure you are using one of the following browsers supported by OnBase system.
The current state lodging limits can be found on the Illinois Higher Education Travel Control Board website.
Yes, lodging rates can exceed the state lodging limit when staying at a recommended hotel. Documentation from the event should be provided listing the established recommended hotel.
Lodging can be reimbursed up to the established recommended hotel rate. Documentation listing the established hotel rate at the recommended hotel must be provided.
The lodging overage can be submitted to the Illinois Higher Education Travel Control Board as an exception for review. This would not delay your reimbursement. The board meets quarterly. They may require additional information from you to make a ruling on your request, such as confirmation you contacted several hotels and chose the most economical available. If the overage is denied by the travel control board the overage plus taxes would be to be refunded to NIU by making a deposit at the Bursar Office. A copy of the deposit slip to be provided to APS.
Original detailed receipts are required for all expenses over $10.00. The receipt should show the expense has been paid in full. Below are examples of what must be included on required detailed receipts:
- Lodging Receipts – must clearly show daily room rates as well as any separate incidental charges, taxes and fees
- Meal Receipts – must clearly show individual items purchases
A Missing Receipt Affidavit can be submitted if a receipt was lost or not provided. Proof of payment such as a credit card statement or transaction detail should be submitted the affidavit.
A credit card statement or transaction detail from the bank does not take the place of an original receipt. If the original receipt is not available a Missing Receipt Affidavit can be submitted along with the credit card statement or transaction detail.
A rental car is allowed if it is the most economical mode of transportation. An explanation and clarification that the rental car was most economical method should be included in the business purpose on the voucher.
Optional expenses are not reimbursable.
State travel regulation require the most economical mode of transportation be used so economy airfare should be chosen.
Travel insurance is not a reimbursable expense.
One checked bag per flight is reimbursable. An exception can be made if excess baggage is required to transport items needed for a presentation or equipment for research, etc. The business purpose for the excess baggage should be included on the travel voucher.
State travel regulations require the most economical mode of transportation be used. Optional seat fees and early check-in, etc., are not reimbursable expenses.
Per Diem vs Meal Reimbursement
Per diem can be requested when in travel status for 18 hours or includes an overnight stay. Receipts are not required to claim per diem.
Yes, if a meal was provided the meal allowance should be deducted from the requested per diem.
The allowable per diem on travel days is based on time of travel. Please list the departure and return times on your voucher so the requested per diem can be verified.
Per diem is not reimbursable on a day trip. To be eligible for a meal you must be in travel status and working for a minimum of 10 hours, travel time is not considered work time. Lunch is not reimbursable on a day trip. To be eligible for breakfast you must leave two hours prior to your normal start time. To be eligible for dinner you must return more than two hours after your normal workday ends. Original detailed receipts are required. Reimburse cannot be more than the allowance for the meal.
Commercial Card Travel
Yes, travel is reportable to the State of Illinois and therefore all travel, whether reimbursable or not, should be submitted on a travel voucher.
No, copies of the receipts should be submitted with the travel voucher. Original receipts should be maintained in the department to support the Commercial Card expense.
No, per the Commercial Card Policy, while conference registration fees, airfare and lodging are all allowable purchases, some expenses such as meals are currently not an allowable commercial card purchase. See the Travel Expense Payment Grid for more information.