317 International Travel Policy

UW-Madison Administrative Policy
Policy # 317

Effective Date: Oct 1, 2015
Last Updated: July 1, 2019
Last Reviewed: July 1, 2019
Next Review: Jan 1, 2020

Functional Owner: Controller, Division of Business Services, Dan Langer
Executive Sponsor: Controller, Division of Business Services, Dan Langer
Policy Contact: Travelers and departmental staff should contact their respective Divisional Business Office for policy questions. Divisional Business Offices may e-mail uwtravel@bussvc.wisc.edu with questions.


Policy Summary

This policy covers general information related to international travel.  Additional information and policy requirements are found on the UW Madison International Safety and Security website.


Who This Policy Applies To

Faculty, staff, students and non-employees traveling internationally or using funds and/or resources administered by the University.


Rationale

This travel policy is designed to ensure the safety and security of the University’s international travelers, as well as to ensure prudent usage of University resources while minimizing the administrative burden for travelers and support staff.


Policy Detail

I. Fly America Act and Open Skies Agreement: In accordance with the Fly America Act of 1974, commercial air travel and movement of cargo on federally funded grants must comply with the requirement that US flag air carriers be used to the maximum extent possible when traveling between the US and a foreign country or between foreign countries. The Open Skies Agreement, however, allows for the use of foreign air carriers under certain circumstances.  All travelers must comply with the Fly America Act unless exceptions in the Open Skies Agreement pertain.

II. Travel Visas. Visa fees are payable/reimbursable by the University when required for University business travel. Any costs associated with issuing or renewing passports are not payable/reimbursable. For information about obtaining travel visas and passports for University business, see the UWTravelWIse Passport Services webpage.

 III. Additional Documentation Requirements. The following documentation requirements are specifically related to international travel:

  1. Foreign Currency: When a payment is made using a foreign currency, the receipt must be converted to US Dollars.  Documentation supporting the exchange rate used must be attached to the expense report or other payment mechanism.
  2. Foreign Language: Vendor documentation printed in a foreign language must be translated to English before submitting for reimbursement or reconciliation.  A tool that may be helpful for doing so is Google Translate.

IV. Registering Equipment prior to Departure. S. Customs requires that all equipment and personal effects of an unusual nature are registered prior to export.  Further information and the Certificates of Registration can be found on the International Travel Carry-on Guide.

V. Travel Insurance. MEDEX is an optional program provided at no cost to State of Wisconsin employees while traveling in the course and scope of their employment.  Employees in work status while involved in educational pursuits abroad are automatically enrolled in a special medical evacuation and repatriation program through the MEDEX Program; however, it is important to note that MEDEX is NOT health insurance; it provides coverage for medical evacuation and repatriation only.

The Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI) program is also available to faculty and staff who are involved in educational programs abroad on a voluntary basis. This provides an excellent option for staff that are not sure how their personal insurance will respond abroad, or who don’t want to risk paying for medical care and submitting for reimbursement after their return. CISI will make direct payments to providers. Individuals should contact their primary health insurer with questions regarding how the coverage works while in travel status. Remember that employees injured in the course and scope of their employment may be eligible for benefits under Worker’s Compensation, regardless of the location of the worksite.

Please contact Risk Management for further information.


Consequences for Noncompliance

The University will not pay or reimburse for any travel cost that is non-compliant with this policy.  Failure to comply with UW-Madison Travel Policy or Procedures may result in disciplinary steps, up to and including dismissal.


Supporting Tools 

UW TravelWIse
Lodging & Per Diem Calculator


Definitions

  1. CISI – International travel insurance available for University employees.
  2. Concur – online travel booking tool approved for use by UW-System and customized for the University by Fox World Travel.
  3. Fly American Act and Open Skies Agreement – Federal legislation mandating the use of US flag air carriers for federally-funded travel.
  4. Fox World Travel – the University-approved travel agency.
  5. MEDEX – International travel insurance available to University employees which provides coverage for medical evacuation and repatriation.

Responsibilities

Traveler/Travel Arranger – responsible for understanding and complying with University travel policies.

UW-Madison International Safety and Security Director – responsible for providing University travelers with information about international travel, include safety and security requirements.

UW Madison Risk Management – responsible for providing University travelers with information about international travel insurance, including procedures for purchasing.


Link to Related Guide

Traveling to a Foreign Country


Link to Related Policies


Revisions

Policy Number: 317
Date Approved:
Revision Dates: