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International Travel Authorization

EFFECTIVE April 1, 2012

Temporary Operational Guidance concerning approvals around International Travel.  This guidance will be replaced when Policy 42.08 ‘Reimbursement of Travel and Other Expenses’ is revised.

International Travel & Expense reports

Currently there is a requirement that all international travel be approved in advance.  In addition, the expense report (which is submitted after a trip) requires approval by the Executive or Dean of International.

Prior approval of International travel – Why is this necessary?

International travel is often the target of criticism from the public and at times may be seen as a ‘perk’ by others.  In addition, it is typically more expensive than domestic travel.  Because of this sensitivity, it is important that the Executive have an opportunity to approve international travel in advance of the trip so that they have an opportunity to stop the trip if they feel it will cause problems.  It also provides the Executive with good information about the rationale and purpose of travel abroad.  Should they be challenged on a specific trip they will have the information to discuss the merits of the travel knowledgably.

Who can approve International Travel?

International travel can be approved by the Executive--VP’s & President (or designate) and the Dean of International.  “Senior Approver” from this point onward refers to the appropriate member of the Executive or the Dean of International.

Approval for international travel should always be requested through Deans and Directors with approval sought from the Senior Approver most closely tied to the Dean or Director’s division. 

What is required to show an international trip is approved?

A simple e-mail can be used as evidence that a trip is approved.  The Senior Approver should be e-mailed (by Deans & Directors) with details of the proposed trip.  Details should include the person who will be traveling, location, reason for travel, as well as the estimated full cost and source of funding.  If the Senior Approver approves the trip they will respond to the e-mail indicating their approval.

Do I need a Senior Approver to approve my expense report after my trip?

No.  The expense report is being redesigned to remove the requirement for the Executive or Dean of International to sign the report.  Instead, all expense reports with international travel should include a copy of the e-mail evidencing that the trip was approved by the appropriate Senior Approver prior to the travel occurring.  Expenditures on the expense report must be approved by a person with sufficient signing authority on the cost centres charged.

What if I submit an expense report without an e-mail indicating that the travel was approved in advance?

The expense report will be returned to the employee to attach the approval for out of country travel.  Should the approval be requested after the travel has taken place, it will be up to the Senior Approvers discretion as to whether or not the expense report will be paid.