Group Travel Procedures
- Student Academic Tours
- Tour Charge Categories (Student Academic Tours Only)
- Revenue Credited To the Tour Accounts
- Payment and Recording of Expenses
- CES Policy for International Tour Groups
- Health Insurance for International Tour Groups
There are potentially three categories of tours: (1) Student Academic Tours, (2) Student Performance Tours, and (3) Community Patron Tours. There are some variations in the handling of each type of tour as noted below.
- All tour participants must first be admitted to BYU-Idaho either as summer-only, non-matriculated or matriculated before their tour application forms and deposits can be accepted. All tour fees will be charged to the student's account. Fees should not be collected outside of the approved accounting system. All applicants must be registered for at least one academic course before they can participate on any Student Academic Tour.
- To be considered for admission as summer-only or non-matriculated students, applicants must complete Parts A, B and D (bishop's endorsement) of the BYU-Idaho application form and submit their application fee (if it has not been previously paid). Summer-only and non-matriculated students cannot register for regular, on-campus Fall or Winter courses.
- Students in the process of applying to gain matriculated status at BYU-Idaho may participate in an academic tour under summer-only or non-matriculated status (subject to acceptance by the Admissions Office) if they complete the materials outlined in the previous paragraph. Their admission to the University as a matriculated student will be considered separately.
- All tour payments may be made on line or may be made at or mailed to the Cashiers Office. Secretaries and tour directors should not accept payments, but if received, they should be taken immediately to the Cashiers Office. Tour fee payments will be credited to the same category on each applicant's account as the initial deposit.
- Tour directors will be responsible to ensure that applicants meet tour payment deadlines.
- Charges will consist of the following:
- TOUR FEE -- total cost of the tour, which includes the initial deposit but not the tuition or other charges; includes HTH International Insurance where applicable,
- TUITION -- based on the number of credits,
- HEALTH CARE -- BYU-Idaho health care, if not covered by private health care;
- It is the responsibility of the travel leader to verify with the Student Health Center that all students that will be traveling are properly insured and to obtain a completed insurance waiver card for each new or former student claiming private insurance coverage. The tour director should make a copy of each student's insurance card and bring them on the tour. For international travel, the tour director should also retain a copy of each student's HTH Insurance card, passport, and/or visa. A copy of these documents should be left with the sponsoring department. A completed insurance waiver card must be included for each new or former student claiming private insurance coverage.
- Upon tour approval, the tour director contacts the Registrar's office and sets up the sections that they will be offering for the tour. Students register and the tour director sends Registration a list of approved students who will be participating in the tour. Student Records marks the student account which allows the student to register in the required class secti0ns.
- After class registration is completed, a Fee and Schedule Form showing the classes, charges, payments (not the deposit), and the amount still owing should be requested by the tour director and mailed or given to each participant. The Registrar's Office will mail these upon request.
- Tuition fees will be posted to each student's account when the semester or term begins.
- Student Academic Tours -- Tour Revenue will be credited when students are added to the tour via the online tour program by the tour director or designee. This list should also include those deposits that have been forfeited.
- Student Performance Tours -- Tour Revenue will be credited when students are added to the tour via the online tour program by the tour director or designee. This list should also include those deposits that have been forfeited.
- Community Patron Tours -- Tour Revenue will be credited when patrons are added to the tour via the online tour program by the tour director or designee. This list should also include those deposits that have been forfeited.
- The Bursars Office is notified upon approval of a tour and establishes the tour account and Group Travel Expense Report (GTE) upon notification. No expenditures or commitment of funds should be incurred until this happens.
- The tour director need not wait for the Tour Revenue to be credited to their account before they can spend money. Some expenses will rightfully occur long before the tour actually begins.
- Regular procedures should be used to request and make payments prior to departure on the tour: i.e., Group Travel Card, invoice payments tied to a contract, Check Requests, Department Hand Checks, CPO's, wire transfers, etc. Tour directors can contact their division chair or secretary for help with the best method to cover expenses, or they can call the Accounting Office at ext. 1900. Tour directors are encouraged to utilize the Travel Office (ext. 2340) in making arrangements for their tour.
- The GROUP TRAVEL EXPENSE REPORT form (GTE) must be used to record all travel advances. Advances can be obtained by submitting a check request to the travel specialist in the Accounting Office. If a large amount of cash is needed contact the Cashier's Office in advance if you plan to cash the check there. If money is obtained to exchange dollars into foreign currency, it is still considered as an advance to the tour director.
- A travel advance is considered a loan to the employee or tour director. These funds must be accounted for either in the form of receipts and/or by returning money to the Cashiers Office within five days after returning from the tour. Contact the travel specialist in the Accounting Office at ext. 1997 if an extension is needed. Whether or not an extension is needed, the excess money should be deposited at the Cashiers Office within the five days.
- The GTE form is used to record a summary of all the expenses incurred during the tour, either from the cash advances (including foreign currencies) or from credit cards. This form is completed upon return from the tour. A spreadsheet-based report may be used in place of the GTE summary form but should be attached to the form. The travel specialist in the Accounting Office will be happy to assist in the completion of this report.
- It is recommended that a Detail of Cash Expenses envelope be used during the tour to record details of all expenses, whether in U.S. or foreign currency. All receipts are placed in the envelope after being referenced and recorded on the envelope. Each currency exchange should also be recorded on this envelope. A separate envelope is used for each currency. If foreign currency is obtained from an ATM machine, the amount should be recorded even though the U.S. currency equivalent will not be known until the credit card statement is received. An ATM cash withdrawal is treated as a cash advance and must be properly accounted for.
- When a cash transaction over $500 is incurred a receipt should be signed by two employees. If a receipt is unavailable a hand written receipt should be used and signed by both employees. Where possible, the person receiving the cash should also sign. Receipt books for tracking expenses can be obtained from the Accounting Office.
- Either corporate credit cards (Travel and/or Group Travel Cards obtained from BYU-Idaho) can be used to pay trip expenses. Tour directors are encouraged to use credit cards instead of travel advances where feasible. Corporate credit cards can be obtained from Financial Services. Remember that the tour director (or employee) is personally responsible for payment of all charges on corporate travel credit cards as well as personal credit cards. If a Group Travel Card is used for purchases, the University pays the card company directly but the expense would still need to be recorded on the GTE and statements would needed to be submitted according to policy. An envelope will be provided by the Accounting Office to keep all receipts from credit card charges.
Tour directors should contact the Travel Specialist in the Accounting Office before they leave to receive the proper forms and assistance for keeping track of expenses and receipts.
CES Policy for International Tour Groups
In a few emergency situations CES higher education performing groups while on tour have sought help from international administrative or mission offices in paying bills, exchanging currency, etc... The following items should be kept in mind when planning and conducting international tours.
Touring groups should plan appropriately to handle their own expenses while on tour, including carrying a Group Travel Card to pay local expenses of the group. International administrative offices should be contacted for assistance only in the case of unforeseen circumstances.
GeoBlue Insurance for International Tour Groups
All international tours involving students are required to purchase GeoBlue Worldwide Health Insurance. This supplemental insurance provides coverage for sickness and injury while traveling abroad. GeoBlue also provides services to coordinate medical care and ensure that individuals get the best service possible. GeoBlue Insurance may also be purchased for Community Patron Tours although it is not mandatory. Additional information about the insurance as well as how to procure coverage can be found at the Risk Management website.