Procurement Services

Travel

International Travel


International Travel must be approved in Concur at least 30 days prior to departure.  Export Control documentation is required to be completed before the International Travel Request will be approved.  Questions regarding Export Controls documentation/requirements should be directed to the Office of Compliance – visit Export Controls for more information.

All international travel by University employees and students on official university business must be approved in advance.  The authorization for travel must be submitted and processed through a Concur Travel Request at least 30 days prior to the travel start date (departure date).  A Concur Travel Request obtains the appropriate approvals for international travel – Dept Head, Provost, President.  If using another Dept account, add traveler Dept Head through the Approval Flow on Concur.

Expense reports for foreign travel will be made in compliance with University Rule 21.01.03.M0.02 and funded with local funds only.

International Travel Safety: Safe Passage Presentation – Employees traveling internationally must complete the international travel safety training every three years. The training is available through TrainTraq - search for course 2111728.

It is recommended that the traveler register with the US Department of State using the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). This allows the traveler to receive information from the embassy about safety conditions in the destination country and helps the embassy contact the traveler in case of an emergency.

Also, even though it is required that the traveler check the US Department of State Travel Warnings and Alerts at the time of the Travel Request submission in Concur, it is also recommend to check the site before departure.  If the destination country has a Travel Alert/Warning since the Travel Request Approval, justification may be required to continue with the trip.  There are also many other links on this site that provide vital information about the country (e.g. U.S. Embassy contact information, safety and security, travel, health, visa requirements, etc.)

TAMUK faculty and staff are strongly encouraged to review this page Benefits while Traveling for information on how to use your Blue Cross Blue Shield benefits while abroad.  You may also visit the BlueCard Worldwide Program website to review the BlueCross BlueShield services available in your travel destination(s) prior to departure.  If you have questions about BCBS coverage, contact Human Resources.  If BCBS services are not available in your destination(s), please contact International Studies at intlstudies@tamuk.edu or (361) 593-3558 for information on accident medical insurance options while abroad.

The Texas A&M System provides a blanket emergency evacuation program through CISI for TAMUK employees who travel abroad on official university business or on TAMUK sponsored international travel. The CISI Assistance Abroad Program gives TAMUK faculty and staff access to a wide range of 24-hour travel and security assistance services, including:

  • Emergency medical and security evacuations
  • Emergency medical transportation services
  • Destination Specific Trip Planning Tools

o          Real-time travel/security alerts

o          Trip reports with cultural and other general recommendations

o          Security reports

o          Health and immunization briefs/recommendations

o          Security rating

o          Currency exchange rates

  • Assistance during international travel emergencies, such as:

o          Medical referrals

o          Prescription drug replacement/shipment

o          Replacement of lost or stolen airline ticket

o          Credit card/Passport/Important document replacement

o          Location of legal services

Contact International Studies or Enterprise Risk Management for more information.

The export of certain items and information is regulated for reasons of national security, foreign policy, prevention of the spread of weapons of mass destruction, and for competitive trade reasons, in accordance with United States laws and regulations, the Texas A&M University System (System) regulations, and agency rules and procedures.

Texas A&M University-Kingsville (TAMUK) is committed to operating in compliance with the United States (U.S.) Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) Export Administration Regulations (EAR), the U.S. Department of State Directorate of Defense Trade Control (DDTC) International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), as well as those imposed by the U.S. Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

Travelers should first complete the International Travel Checklist Export Control Screening, found on the Export Controls webpage.  Email the completed Screening form to exportcontrols@tamuk.edu and attach it to the Travel Request in Concur.  The International Travel Checklist Export Control Screening is a self-assessment of any Export Controlled items or information that you may be taking on your trip.  If you have any questions about this checklist or Export Control in general, contact The Office of Compliance and Risk Management.

TAMUK employees are individually responsible for identifying potential export–controlled items and information when preparing for a trip abroad. If a traveler indicates on the Screening Form that they will travel abroad with export–controlled items or information, TAMUK Compliance will work closely with the traveler and associated parties to determine the next plan of action to ensure compliance with export control laws, regulations, policies, and rules. Additionally, it is strongly recommended that travelers planning to take a trip abroad take the following TrainTraq Courses:  #2111212 - Export Controls, and #2111728 - International Travel.

The US Department of State Foreign Per Diem Rates by Location site is used to determine meal and lodging rates for the area of the country that is being traveled to.  International travel is required to be allocated to local funds only, so the rates are only used as a guide and it is not a university policy to limit meals and lodging to these rates on local funds.  However, Departments/Colleges may limit the travelers to these rates, so please check with your Department Chair or College Dean.  Travelers may only claim up to actual travel expenses incurred.

Expenses related to international travel preparation for business purposes is an allowable expense.  For example, costs to obtain passports/visas or immunizations required for a particular country are reimbursable expenses.  Receipts are required for reimbursement or to document the travel card charge.

 For more information about Passport Applications/Renewals and VISA requirements, visit the US Passports & International Travel webpage from the US Department of State.

The Fly America Act (41 CFR 301-10.131 through 301-10.143) requires that all federally funded travel be on a US flag carrier or US flag carrier service provided under a code-share agreement*.

* Code sharing occurs when two or more airlines "code" the same flight as if it was their own. In other words, a U.S. airline may sell a seat on the plane of a foreign air carrier; this seat is considered the same as one on a plane operated by a U.S. flag carrier. Compliance with the Fly America Act is satisfied when the U.S. flag air carrier's designator code is present in the area next to the flight numbers on the airline ticket, boarding pass, or on the documentation for an electronic ticket (passenger receipt).

To ease the burden on the traveler or their booking designee, Texas A&M University has contracted with Corporate Travel Partners (CTP) to ensure compliance with the Fly America Act when airfare is booked through Concur.  Corporate Travel Partners will book within compliance or an acceptable exception will be noted that carries to the expense report in Concur.

While booking through Concur/CTP, either via the Concur online booking tool or calling them directly, is recommended, a traveler may choose to accept this responsibility and book through other means. By doing so, the traveler assumes 100% responsibility that the airfare is in compliance or a valid exception is documented. Documentation must be attached to the Concur expense report. Documentation of compliance is the appearance of the US flag air carrier’s designator code and flight number on tickets or associated documentation (e-Ticket itinerary) for all legs of a trip. Should the travel be booked “outside” of CTP, complete the Fly America Exception Form and attach to the Concur Expense Report.

Exceptions to the Fly America Act:

The biggest exception to the Fly America Act are the Open Skies Agreements. On October 6, 2010, the United States and European Union (EU) "Open Skies" Air Transport Agreement was published by the U.S. General Services Administration, providing full explanation of the multilateral agreement in place so that qualifying travelers, whose travel is supported by federal funds, may travel on European Union airlines as well as U.S. Flag Air Carriers. These agreements with other nations allow travel on foreign airlines under certain conditions when procuring using federal funds. Information about the four Open Skies Agreements along with a list of participating countries is available here. There are other exceptions to the Fly America Act which may be appropriate as well. A list of exception criteria may be found in the Federal Travel Regulation Guidelines, sections 301‐10.135–138. Please note that lower cost and personal convenience are not acceptable criteria for justifying the non‐availability of a U.S. –flag air carrier.