Where to Purchase

Travel can be booked however you deem fit, through a travel agency, directly with an airline, or an online agency of your choice. Effective 06/07/12 Airfare no longer must be purchased through a contract travel agency or directly with the airline. The contract is available for use as a convenience:

Benefits of State Contract Airfares


  • provide "YCAWA" as fare basis code during purchase
  • may only use a UW individual travel card or CTA to purchase contract airfare
  • can not purchase contract airfare using personal credit card
  • listed by "city pair" and specific contract airline for one-way flight to either direction
  • domestic fares includes all applicable federal, state and local taxes; does not include passenger facility charges, segment fees and September 11th security fee

*Note: Can only book contract fare by calling Alaska Airlines directly or by using a contracted travel agent. 

How to Purchase

Airfare can be paid for using a personal credit card, cash, CTA, or the individual travel card. All but the CTA are reimbursed through eTravel. Effective 06/07/12 airfare nolonger must be purchased using individual travel card or CTA; except for contract fares:

Review guidelines when combining personal time/travel with UW business trip.

Exceptions for Not Using Contract Airfares prior to June 7th 2012

  • No choice

  • Cheaper airfare

  • No timely flights
  • No seats

  • No contract fare

  • Non UW

Frequent Flyer Programs

See State Ethics Board Advisory Opinion 03-03.

Airfare expenses procured with any rewards program, such as mileage, my wallet, or credits, are not reimbursable.

Companion Fare

See RCW 42.52.160.

First Class,Business Class Airfare,Upgrade,Seat Fee

Requires prior written approval from a Vice President, Vice Provost, or Dean (Director or Chancellor for Bothell and Tacoma campus) authority cannot be delegated . Attach to ER in ARIBA. Do not send to Travel Office.

  • a single annual approval updated yearly is acceptable for frequent travel (must attach to ER each time).
  • letter/memo must list reason for approval and include signature
    • list specific business reason or medical
  • email is acceptable for one time approval
  • approval must be included with the reimbursement
  • extra/additional fees are not reimbursable
  • coach upgrades and seat fees require justification and approval from an administrator

Air Travel in Excess of 14 Hours

Business class fare OR a foreign layover directly en route or at the final destination for brief rest period (not to exceed 24 hours) may be authorized, provided all the following conditions have been met: 

  • have prior travel approval from an authorized person, can be on the out-of-state travel approval
  • origin or destination is outside the continental United States
  • one-way(each leg, from origin to destination one way) flight time including layover is in excess of 14 hours
    • documentation is required indicating flight time
  • used all UW frequent flyer miles (if available) to upgrade

Receipts / Reimbursement

Proof of payment and airfare itinerary is required regardless of cost.  Review reimbursement guidelines and if a package deal was purchased.  

Fly America Act  

The Fly America Act mandates the use of U.S. certificated air carriers for federally funded international travel.  Learn more.

Informative powerpoint presentation from GSA


* For more information contact: Cheryl.McClain@gsa.gov or Rodney.Miller@gsa.gov.


Package Deal

To ensure travel expenses are reimbursed against appropriate obj codes, each type of expense must be accounted for.  Documentation must comply with the IRS Accountable Plan, and we do not recommend Package Deals.

  • determine lodging per diem allowance for location
  • multiply number of actual travel days with daily lodging per diem allowance
  • deduct amount from package total and claim amount as lodging expense
  • apply rest of total to airfare expense
  • If the package deal includes a rental car, the total of the package cannot be reimbursed prior to the trip. A rental agreement must be obtained for reimbursement after the trip. Use the rental car agreement for the rental car amount, the break out the rest accordingly.

Personal Time/Travel