For updates on the impact of COVID-19 on university-sponsored travel, please visit Health Alerts for Stanford Travelers. For FMS updates related to COVID-19, visit FMS Updates Related to COVID-19.

This webpage explains how to manage expenses related to cancellations or delays of university-sponsored travel.

If a traveler needs to cancel a flight, be sure to cancel it before the scheduled departure time or the ticket will have no redeemable value.

If a flight has been cancelled by the airline, the traveler may be eligible for a refund, even if it is a nonrefundable ticket. Please check with the Stanford Travel Booking Channel (or the original booking source if booked outside of Stanford Travel) where the ticket was issued to determine the options available. Please note that refunds may take one to two billing cycles to appear on the original form of payment.

Refundable airline tickets that were purchased with a Stanford Travel Card can be cleared after the refund has been processed. Any applicable refund penalties can be submitted for reimbursement at that time. 
Non-refundable airline tickets can typically be exchanged for a future date. Airline change fees may apply, although many U.S. airlines have waived their fees.  

  • When exchanging a ticket for a lower priced ticket, the residual credit from the original ticket may be forfeited. 
  • When exchanging a ticket for a higher priced ticket, travelers are responsible for any increases in airfare for the new itinerary. 

Check with the Stanford Travel Booking Channel (or the original booking source if booked outside of Stanford Travel) where the ticket was issued  to determine the specific rules for your reservation. Reimbursable agent  fees will only apply if an agent processes the airline ticket exchange.  

Unused airline tickets are valid until the ticket expires, usually one year after the date of purchase. In some situations, airlines may extend the ticket expiration past the initial expiration date. To find your ticket’s expiration date, check the Stanford Travel Booking Channel (or the original booking source if booked outside of Stanford Travel) where the ticket was issued.

  • If you booked your ticket through Egencia, see the Payment Types section of your Egencia profile for ticket expiration dates and ticket value, or call Egencia for information.
  • If you booked your ticket through FCM , find your unused ticket value in your FCM profile in the FCM Hub or contact an FCM agent. 
  • If you booked your ticket through StudentUniverse, contact a StudentUniverse agent. 
  • If you booked your ticket through United Corporate Direct, check your United profile or call United for information.

United Airlines non-refundable tickets purchased using Egencia or FCM may be eligible for a Refund Waiver, less a processing fee. Contact an Egencia or FCM agent to verify eligibility and to initiate the refund process. 

For airline tickets booked through Egencia or FCM, the following  airlines may grant a Name Change Waiver that allows a traveler to transfer an airline ticket to another traveler per the chart below.

Important Note about Name Change Waivers: A Name Change Waiver can’t be processed until a new traveler has been identified and is  ready to book a new itinerary. Meanwhile, the ticket will remain in the original traveler’s name. The  original traveler should be advised not to use the unused ticket credit in the interim. There is no systemic way to monitor or prevent use.

Airline Action Item
Alaska

Contact Egencia or FCM to rebook ticket.*

Only applicable to tickets with travel dates between 2/27/20 and 12/31/21.  Ticket must be reissued by 12/31/21.

American Contact Egencia or FCM to rebook ticket.*
Delta Contact Egencia or FCM to rebook ticket.*
Southwest Submit Stanford Travel Support request for LUV Voucher.
United Contact Egencia or FCM.* Name change waivers are not available for tickets booked through United Corporate Direct. 
*Eligibility for name change will be determined at time of ticket exchange.  Fees may apply.
  • If the traveler purchased the ticket with a Travel Card (TCard), they may use the ticket for a personal trip but they must reimburse Stanford for the ticket.
  • If the traveler purchased the ticket with a personal credit card, and has not yet been reimbursed by Stanford for that cost, the ticket may be used for a personal trip.

When trips must be cancelled, travelers are encouraged to rebook nonrefundable tickets for travel at a later date or transfer the ticket to another traveler whenever possible. If it is not possible to use the ticket prior to the expiration date, it is reimbursable  with proper documentation. An Unused Ticket Affidavit must be completed and submitted with the expense report in the Expense Requests System (ERS). Unused tickets must be charged to an unrestricted account (PTA) and need to use the appropriate unallowable expenditure type.

  • Airline tickets for visitors, students or departed employees can be expensed at time of cancellation or employment termination.  Please note that the airline ticket will remain in the traveler’s name and retain value until the ticket has expired. There is no systemic way to monitor or prevent use. Therefore, it is strongly encouraged that the ticket be transferred (or refunded, if applicable) as soon as possible. The traveler can also opt to decline reimbursement and use the ticket for personal travel. 
  • Airline tickets for active employees can not be expensed until the ticket has been used, transferred to another traveler, or has expired.
    • For unused airline tickets purchased with a Stanford Travel Card, the expense end date in ERS must be extended until the expiration date per Fingate: Managing Travel Card (Tcard) Expense Dates. The system will only allow a 2-year extension. For tickets with a longer term expiration, submit a support request notifying the Card Services team of this extension. 
    • For unused airline tickets purchased with a personal card, advances will only be granted for personal hardship.
  • To return all or part of an advance, follow the steps in How to Return Unused Advance Funds.

Cancellations by Conference Attendee

If an employee cancels conference attendance due to the current travel restrictions, conference registration fees or cancellation fees may be reimbursable by Stanford at the department's discretion.

Cancellations By Conference Hosts

Conference attendees should seek reimbursement from the conference host when the cancellation has been initiated by the host. In the rare situation where the host will not reimburse, attendees should seek approval from the department, and with agreement, attendees should submit back-up documentation with the expense request for reimbursement.

Cancellation fees should be charged to an Unallowable Expenditure Type on a Non-Sponsored PTA. For a booking that was charged to a grant, if there is airfare or other travel expense credit, it should be credited back to the grant. If there is no credit for these cancellations, those charges need to be moved to an Unallowable Expenditure Type on a Non-Sponsored account, unless the sponsor explicitly allows the cancelled travel charges.

You may accrue expenses that should be recognized in the current fiscal period but will not be recorded in Oracle by the end of the fiscal period. For more information, visit the Guideline for Accruing Expense policy on Fingate.