- What can I request an advance for or what are the types of advances I can request?
You may request an advance in the following circumstances:
- Pre-paid Expenses Advance: The traveller has pre-paid elements of the trip (e.g. airfare, conference fees, accommodations) and can provide evidence of payment. A reservation is not a pre-paid expense. A pre-paid advance can only be issued if requested at least of 21 days prior to the return date of the trip or end of your event.
- Cash Advance: A cash advance will only be paid out 2 weeks prior to departure. A traveller is eligible for a cash advance if one or more of the following apply:
• The traveller will be away for more than 14 consecutive days
• The destination is outside of Canada or the US
• The destination is in a rural or northern region of Canada where it is unlikely that credit card payments can be made
Note: For travel advances, it is preferable that a traveler obtain cash advances by means of the University’s Travel Card. Any associated fee is an allowable expense.
- How many advances can I have at one time?
You are permitted to have up to 5 outstanding advances at one time. If at any time 1 of those advances becomes overdue, you may no longer request any more advances until you report on the overdue one.
- When can I request an advance?
There are two types of advance requests:
- All advances must be requested at least 21 days prior to the return date of your trip or end of your event, and/or
- All advances must be requested no less than 5 days prior to your departure date or event start date.
*You will need to take the approvals into consideration when requesting an advance within 4 weeks of your departure date or event. Be sure to follow up with your approvers so that they are expecting your request.
- How do I request an advance?
Using the Travel and Expense system, you will need to fill out an Authorization Report. Once you have completed the report with your estimates and/or pre-paid expenses, click on the “Request Advance” button rather than the submit button. This will open a new dialogue where you can indicate the amount of your advance. You will be required to select the type of advance: Cash or Pre-Paid Expenses. See “What can I request an advance for?” to read about the types of advances.
- What do I do if don't spend all of my advance?
If you do not spend all of your advance, you will need to write a cheque to Carleton University for the amount remaining and send it with your receipt package and notification once you submit your report. The expense report will keep track of the amounts cleared off of your advance, and the Business Office will follow up with you if they do not receive the payment.
- What if I received an advance, but my trip was cancelled?
If your trip or event was cancelled, you will have to do two things:
- Return the payment to the Business Office as a cheque made out to Carleton University.
- Release the budget on the original authorization in Travel and Expense by logging into the application, selecting the authorization report for which you received the advance, clicking the “Other Actions’ menu item, and selecting “Release Budget”.
If you do not release the budget, the funds will remain encumbered in the FOAP. The Business Office will follow up on stale authorizations if you forget about this step.
- How do I file an expense report if I got an advance?
When you are ready to report on your advance, log into Travel and Expense and select or click on the Outstanding Advance from your list of outstanding advances. Click on “Generate Expense Report” button in the bottom right of the listing screen. This will generate your expense report and automatically include your advance information. Simply update the estimated expenses to your actual expenses and add any new costs that were incurred, then submit the report as you would for a typical expense report.
- I didn't spend anything in addition to my advance. Do I still need to file an expense report?
Yes, you still need to report on your outstanding advance so that the expenses are recorded on the general ledger and the outstanding advance is cleared from your name. If you forget this step, the Business Office will follow up with you.