Do agencies pay moving/transportation/meal costs to and from my travel destination?
Like most agencies, Cross Country TravCorps does not cover the entire cost of traveling to and from your assignment. However, we do offer you a tax-free travel stipend to offset these expenses. The amount of your stipend is usually paid out upfront or split between your first and last paycheck. Our stipends often cover the cost of airfare or other public transit, or gas mileage if you are driving your own car to relocate. Though we don't pay for meals or hotels during your move, these expenses are usually tax-deductible. Ask your recruiter and tax planner for more details.
Do you provide your travelers with a rental car while on assignment?
No, but we will reimburse you for miles traveled to and from your assignment whether you are using your own car or a rental. As long as an agency’s gas mileage rate complies with IRS standards, then these reimbursements are non-taxable. When you use your own vehicle, car maintenance and repair costs are tax-deductible.
If I choose to find my own housing, what will be the amount of my housing subsidy (a.k.a. stipend)?
Housing stipends depend on your travel locale’s cost of living; they're calculated on a monthly basis and paid every two weeks. Your Housing Specialist can give you the exact amount of your housing stipend once you have determined your travel destination; you can pretty much count on that amount to be in line with the monthly rental fees of your agency-provided housing.
If I stay with a friend or relative while on assignment, will I lose my housing allowance?
You are eligible for a housing allowance regardless of where you live while on assignment.
Do I qualify for free housing if I travel with my family?
Agency-provided housing typically accommodates a single traveler. A one-bedroom apartment is the norm and rent reimbursement fees and housing stipends are based on this parameter. If you are traveling with your family, Cross Country TravCorps will try to find you a place that’s roomier and includes additional furnishings and amenities to meet your specific requirements, however, you will be responsible for paying the overage.
Can I bring my pets along? Is there a pet deposit?
Cross Country TravCorps knows how important it is to come home to your much-loved pet each day.That’s why many of our agency-provided housing complexes are pet-friendly. Pet rent is charged to you based on the property's rent policy and you might be charged a non-refundable per-pet fee if you bring multiple pets with you. Most places also require a pet security deposit to cover any damages to the property or to pay for additional cleaning expenses once you move out of the unit. You are responsible for covering those costs as well.
If I reside in agency-provided housing or choose a private rental, are my personal items insured?
Unfortunately no, but give your insurance company a call: most offer short-term, inexpensive renters' policies that will cover your personal belongings.
Am I taxed on my housing stipend?
If you have a permanent residence (also referred to as a qualified tax home), your housing stipend will not be taxed. If you do not have a tax home, you will be required to pay taxes on your housing stipend. A tax home is typically a residence you are planning to maintain when you are traveling and return to after you complete your travel assignment. To get more details on what qualifies as a tax home, please refer to our Tax Home Statement at iTravelCCTC.com and consult your tax advisor.
Have additional travel/ housing question?
Call 1.800.530.6125 and ask tospeak to one of our talent acquisition specialists. Or surf our Travel Nursing Advice Blog for answers to more travel questions.
Original Issuance Date: October 05, 2015
Revision: December 27, 2017
1. Policy Purpose
The objectives of this policy are as follows:
- Prescribe the mileage reimbursement rate
- Prescribe requirements for using contract vehicle rental vendors
- Define responsibility for determining the most appropriate mode of transportation
- Define vehicle expenses that can be paid or reimbursed with University funds
- Define business mileage and calculation of miles for reimbursement
- Define responsibilities for institutions that operate a fleet
2. Responsible UW System Officer
Vice President for Finance
This policy applies to use of vehicle rental contracts and reservation requirements and to all University payments for the use of personal, rental, or fleet vehicles, including all non-employees (students, job interview candidates, invited speakers, consultants/contractors, etc.) traveling on University business when the University will be reimbursing mileage or rental vehicle costs.
This policy has been issued under the authority of the Board of Regents as it relates to the governance of university travel and expense policies created under Wis. Stat. s. 36.11(56). The Board of Regents delegated authority for management and operation of the travel program to the UW System President in Regent Policy Document 21-5, University Travel Policies.
Please review keyword definitions in relation to this policy.
6. Policy Statement
Use of personal vehicles for University business is allowed when the use is less costly than alternative means of transportation or when there are conveniences or safety issues that justify the additional costs, as determined by the approving authority. The approving authority must also consider other options including; rental vehicles, business car share and use of central fleet when considering cost for ground transportation.
Reimbursement of business mileage or other vehicle related costs will not be made for normal commuting from home to regularly assigned headquarters. The “Headquarter” location is where your main place of business or work is located, regardless of where you maintain your home.
Business versus Commuting Miles
From Regularly Assigned Headquarters:
Reimbursement for business mileage from regularly assigned headquarters will be based on miles traveled from assigned headquarters to temporary worksite(s) during the work day and return mileage to home or headquarters, whichever is less.
From Home or Temporary Headquarters:
If mileage is incurred by traveling directly to a temporary worksite from home and then to the regularly assigned headquarters, business mileage will be based on miles from home or headquarters to the temporary worksite, whichever is less, and then from the temporary worksite to headquarters. If the traveler returns home rather than going to headquarters, mileage is based on home or headquarters, whichever is less.
For those employees with multiple worksites, the appointing authority must determine which business location (i.e. must determine which worksite qualifies as the headquarters – typically the campus or administrative office) constitutes the clear majority for reimbursement of business mileage
When employees are not scheduled to be at work, but are required to drive to a temporary worksite or an airport for further travel, mileage from home will be permitted.
When two or more employees from the same institution are traveling to the same destination, it is expected that every attempt will be made to travel together reducing the cost of the trip. Approving authorities may require coordination of travelers for this purpose, and limit mileage reimbursement to one driver.
B. Risk Management – Driver Authorization
Employees and students who are required to drive on University sponsored business must be authorized to drive in accordance with UW System Administrative Policy 615, Vehicle Use and Driver Authorization, prior to using personal vehicles, rental vehicles, or fleet services.
Note: In addition to receiving driver authorization, successful completion and certification of Van Training is required prior to renting 12-15 passenger vans. Certification is required to be presented when renting a 12-15 passenger van.
C. Accident Reporting
In the event of an accident it is the responsibility of the driver to immediately report the accident to the following:
- University Supervisor/Manager/Host
- University Risk Management
- Fleet Services or Rental Vehicle Supplier
Additional procedures can be found at UW System Risk Management
D. Personal Mileage Reimbursement Rates and Application
Business mileage will be reimbursed at the IRS authorized mileage rate in effect on date of travel using the most direct route. Institutions may not pay a different mileage rate than stated in policy but may place limits on the overall trip expenses to be reimbursed. To be eligible for mileage reimbursement travelers must list the point to point (departing origin and destination location and distance traveled) mileage on the expense report. MapQuest or Google Maps are the official tools for determining the most direct route. Deviations from the most direct route must be explained on the expense report.
The reimbursement rate for personal vehicle mileage covers all costs related to the operation of the vehicle, including service, maintenance, insurance, depreciation, and gas. When two or more persons traveling on University business share transportation in a personal vehicle, only the driver may claim reimbursement for mileage.
Business miles will also be reimbursed for the following scenarios:
- Miles traveled to pick up additional passengers when traveling together on business;
- Mileage to and from airport, train station, etc. when traveling on business.
- Two round trips will be permitted if the traveler is being dropped off and picked up rather than incurring parking costs. Airport choice for ticket price comparisons must consider mileage costs as additional costs when not selecting the closest airport.
- One-way mileage associated with employee relocation (see SYS 240, Relocation (Household Moves) and Temporary or Indefinite Work Assignments regarding relocation and temporary or indefinite work assignments).
E. Fleet Vehicles
Not all UW System institutions maintain a fleet of vehicles for traveler use. As such, requirements for mandatory use of fleet vehicles will be determined by the institution’s appointing authority or designee. Institutions that operate a fleet will be responsible for determining the method for verifying availability of fleet vehicles for the purposes of assigning the appropriate reimbursement rate. Institutions will determine the “breakeven” mileage threshold for requiring fleet use and any documentation requirement for reimbursement. When fleet vehicles are not available, the standard rate for the mode of transportation will be paid to the traveler for business mileage incurred.
F. Reimbursement Rates
|Modes of Transportation||Rate per mile|
|Standard – Personal Vehicle||$0.545||Effective with travel 1/1/2018|
|Standard – Personal Vehicle||$0.535||Travel prior to 1/1/2018|
|Standard – Motorcycle||$0.515||Effective with travel 1/1/2018|
|Standard – Motorcycle||$0.505||Travel prior to 1/1/2018|
|Turndown Rate/Fleet Non-Use||$0.352|
G. Use of Vehicles in lieu of Air Travel
A traveler may request mileage or rental vehicle reimbursement or payment of a fleet vehicle for personal reasons when air travel would be the most appropriate means of transportation given time and distance. The approving authority can approve the request if the costs do not exceed the cost of coach/economy airfare, taking into consideration the extra time to drive versus fly. Mileage to and from the destination will be based on the most direct route. See Determining Mode of Transportation for required comparison documentation.
H. Rental Vehicles and Contract Use Requirements
When it is determined that a rental vehicle is the most cost effective means of transportation, use of the contracted rental vehicle suppliers is required. The University participates in the Big Ten Alliance contract with Enterprise and National Car Rental. Eligible business renters are classified as all University authorized drivers age 18 and over. Authorized drivers 18-20 are restricted to domestic rentals only.
The addition of any authorized driver(s) must be done at the rental outlet upon vehicle pickup.
Rentals are limited to compact/standard/intermediate vehicle classes unless there are business needs that require larger classes of vehicles. Claims for reimbursement beyond standard/intermediate vehicle classes (i.e. trucks, vans, etc.) for reasons such as transporting extra passengers, carrying cargo or bulky equipment, etc., must be explained on the expense report.
Vehicle rental reimbursement is limited to the amount directly related to University business. If the traveler opts for a weekly rate because the total cost is less than if rented at the daily rate for the number of business days, the weekly rate amount will be reimbursed. If the traveler extends the rental for personal reasons, the weekly rate will be pro-rated and only the amount directly related to University business will be reimbursed.
When Enterprise or National do not serve the location of travel or when vehicles are not available, Hertz, under the State of Wisconsin (WSCA) contract, may be used and the domestic contracted rates also include standard insurance coverages.
I. Insurance Provisions
The Big Ten Alliance contracts include collision (CDW) and liability (LDW) insurance coverage for U.S. originating rentals. The Big Ten agreement offers rates and some insurance coverage for international rentals, but travelers are advised that rates and coverages vary by rental location. Travelers and those that arrange travel for others must review the rental vehicle contracts for rates, surcharges and included coverages prior to renting a vehicle. Employees must verify that the Big Ten or WSCA (State of Wisconsin) contract ID number is referenced on the rental agreement to assure contract coverage, appropriate terms and rates. Other or extra types of insurances are not reimbursable and must be declined. The Hertz contract with the State of Wisconsin also includes the necessary CDW/LDW insurances.
Vehicle rental CDW and LDW insurances must be purchased when renting from non-contract suppliers. Non U.S. originating rentals from contract suppliers may also require the purchase of CDW and/or LDW. Review the vehicle rental contracts to determine when standard CDW/LDW insurances are provided for the non-U.S. location. Required CDW/LDW insurance coverages must be purchased at vehicle pickup and cannot be included during the reservation process. Travelers will be reimbursed the cost of standard CDW and LDW insurances under these circumstances. Drivers that reserve and pay for a non-contract rental vehicle with the University Corporate Travel Card have insurance benefits that will cover this insurance requirement. Refer to your benefit guide that came with your card.
J. Rental Vehicle Reservation Options
Concur – Concur must be used for all internet based reservations utilizing the Big Ten contract with Enterprise and National. Hertz is also available within Concur when Enterprise and National do not have necessary availability. Utilizing Concur for reservations enables the contract booking ID to automatically applied ensuring that all reservations are under contract and appropriately insured.
Employees and students must be prepared to provide UW System identification and the UW System’s tax exempt wallet card to receive tax exemption on qualifying rentals (i.e. rentals originating in Wisconsin or participating States).
K. Driver Refueling
Drivers are responsible for refueling vehicles prior to return with the same level of fuel that they received at time of rental. The UW System will not reimburse vendor refueling or prepay fuel packages and these options should be declined by the renter at vehicle pickup. Receipts for gas are required to support reimbursement claims.
Approved payment methods for UW System vehicle rental reservations and guarantees are University Purchasing Cards approved for travel, institutional or individual liability Corporate Travel Cards. Payment for the rental is due upon return of the vehicle and must be paid with a charge card in the driver’s name.
M. Reimbursement & Receipt Requirements
For mileage reimbursement, record required details: date, business purpose of trip, “point to point” locations and mileage incurred. A 10% tolerance above “point to point” map mileage may be used to cover detours, incidental miles between lodging and event location, etc.
Rental vehicles require the rental agreement and receipt as provided upon vehicle return and any additional receipts for gas.
Use of fleet must be indicated on the expense report if fleet or a department assigned vehicle was used.
N. Related Reimbursable Expenses
The following vehicle related expenses are reimbursable:
- Toll costs incurred while traveling for business. Advance deposits placed on an individual’s toll pass account are not reimbursable, only the pass dollars used to cover the business tolls for the trip will be reimbursed.
- Parking while traveling for business purposes, including headquarter city.
- Short term parking costs incurred by driver when traveler is being picked up/dropped off at airport terminal, etc.
See UW System Administration Policy 430 (SYS 430), Travel & Expense – Purchase & Payment Miscellaneous Travel Expenses, for more information and receipt requirements.
O. Non-Reimbursable Expenses
The following is a non-inclusive list of vehicle related expenses that will not be paid or reimbursed by UW System funding sources:
|Personal Vehicles||Rental Vehicles|
P. Procedural Standards
Procedures and Operational Standards for vehicle options are integral to the application of this policy. Review procedural requirements for vehicle rentals contracts prior to renting.
7. Related Documents
Regent Policy 21-5, University Travel Policies
UW System Administrative Policy 405 (formerly 1200 (ANS)), Travel & Expense – General Travel & Expense Policy
University System Purchasing Card Policies
UW System Administrative Policy 615, Vehicle Use and Driver Authorization
Determining the Appropriate Mode of Transportation
UW System Administrative Policy 240 (formerly F19), Relocation (Household Moves) and Temporary or Indefinite Work Assignments
UW System Administrative Policy 336 (formerly F2), Sales and Use Tax
IRS Publication 463
8. Policy History
Revision 2: December 27, 2017
Revision 1: January 13, 2017
First approved: October 5, 2015*
*This policy was previously section IX of Financial Policy and Procedure Paper (FAPP) 36 University Travel Regulations (now superseded by the travel policies in the 400 series of the UW System Administrative policies).
9. Scheduled Review