Chapter 11 Expenses financial procedures - travel and subsistence

General principles
  1. Travel and accommodation expenses incurred on authorised University business should be booked and paid directly by the University wherever possible. Should travel and accommodation be booked outside the University's agreed processes, please note that the individual bears the risk of the booking not meeting suitable Health and Safety standards

  2. Where direct payment by the University is not practicable, staff will be reimbursed for reasonable travel and subsistence (T&S) expenses incurred on authorised University business.

  3. Reimbursement of T&S claims for staff are made through Payroll in £ sterling using the e-Expenses system.

  4. When claiming expenses, only original copies of expense claim forms will be accepted for payment to avoid duplicate payments.  Photocopies are not acceptable.


  1. A SAP Purchase Order or Purchasing Card must be used for valid business expenses wherever possible. The University’s purchasing procedures should be followed, including ensuring value for money is achieved.

  2. Original receipts (not credit card vouchers or credit card/bank statements) must be obtained for expenses for which reimbursement is being claimed. If a member of staff is working away from the University for a period of time and cannot submit original receipts in a timely manner due to their location, scanned copies of receipts may be accepted to facilitate payment, with original receipts being submitted on return to the University.  The University reserves the right to refuse to process and pay expense claims that are incorrectly prepared or insufficiently supported with receipts or documentation (subject to paragraph 12 below). If the claim is for costs relating to people other than the claimant, these people must be named individually on the claim.

  3. University Executive Group (UEG) members’ expenses must be authorised by the Vice Chancellor (VC), Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC), Chief Financial Officer or University Secretary.  The VC's expenses must be authorised by the Chair of Council or nominee.  Deans’ expenses must be authorised by a DVC, the Chief Financial Officer or the Director of Finance.  Heads of Service expenses must be authorised by their UEG member.  Heads of School expenses must be authorised by the Dean of the Faculty.

  4. The appropriate authorised signatory within a Faculty/School/Service is responsible for authorising staff expense claims. Expense claims must be authorised by a signatory senior to the claimant, or an appropriately delegated nominee, for the cost object being charged.

  5. Promotional incentives may be accepted by staff for their own personal use only where purchases represent best value for money for the University.  Cash credit card discounts/rebates to the individual are not permitted.

  6. The partner of a member of staff shall not be entertained at the University’s expense.  The University Secretary or Chief Financial Officer should be consulted in advance to authorise partners’ expenses where it is deemed to be in the best interests of the University. Please note that non-compliance with this policy could lead to a personal tax liability. Please consult Payroll in these instances.


  1. Reimbursement for payments made by employees in a foreign currency will be made in £ sterling, translated at the exchange rate quoted on the day the claim is completed  If different exchange rates are to be used in the claim, proof of conversion must be submitted e.g. credit card statements. The individual authorising the claim should ensure the conversion rate used is reasonable.

  2. Maximum expense allowances payable by the University are set out in the expense rates table.

  3. For incidental expenses (eg: parking meters, tube fares, bus fares and telephone calls made from public phone boxes) where it is not possible to obtain a receipt, the University will reimburse up to a maximum of £10 per day. Claims must be limited to the exact amount of the expense incurred and not claimed as a round sum allowance. The amount of personal incidental expenses, (ie not incurred necessarily nor in the performance of the employee's duties) (eg laundry, newspapers private telephone calls, beverages not complementing an evening meal), which can be claimed as part of the £10 limit, is limited to

    - £5 per night for overnight stays anywhere within the UK (Great Britain and Northern Ireland) and
    - £10 per night for overnight stays outside the UK

  4. e-Expense claims must be submitted by the staff member to whom the expense relates. They must print a copy of the claim, attach original receipts, and send to the checker. The claim must be authorised by the approver and checked by the checker.

  5. Expenses for non university employees and students are paid through Payroll on submission of an original, authorised Travel and Subsistence form, or an Authority for Payment form for expenses other than travel and subsistence.

  6. Claims for up to £100 (excluding Advances) may be paid through Cash Services by presenting an original, authorised claim form during Cash Services’ opening hours.

  7. Valid travel expenses not exceeding £10 per week per person may be claimed from petty cash floats.

  8. All expense claims must be submitted within six weeks of incurring the expense, and within three weeks of the financial year end of 31 July.

  9. Copies of all expense claims together with original receipts must be retained by the Faculty/School/Service for 6 years.
Page owner: | Updated: 15/10/2017