As staff are now well into planning side trips to visit returnees in conjunction with the National Conference in Singapore, here are a few important reminders regarding submitting expenses for reimbursement.
1. The expenses for returnee visits must be submitted separately from your expenses related to the National Conference; this is because the expenses come from separate accounts and cannot be split out by the Finance Department due to processing time constraints. If you do not separate the expenses they will all be charged to your regular ministry account and you will need to make a request to transfer funds at a later date.
2. When you book your travel, you will also need to get a quote for the cost to travel just to the National Conference. This is the amount which can be charged to the escrow account. The remaining amount can be charged to a special account if you have requested one. For example: if your total airfare is $2000 and the quote for Singapore only is $1500, then you would reimburse $1500 from escrow and $500 from your special account. On the escrow reimbursement, you will need to include both the quote AND the actual receipt.
3. When you submit the reimbursement for your special account, you will need to send us ONLY the actual receipt. On the expense tab indicate how much is being charged to the escrow account (i.e. “for travel to visit returnees, $1500 paid from escrow”) so we can match up the receipt quickly.
In addition, you will need to pay close attention to the trip approval email from Rashae Finck. (You must submit a trip application if and only if you are taking a side trip.) Some side trips are NOT 100% for business. When you submit expenses for travel, lodging, and food, you may only submit the percent of which was stated in the approval email. For example: if the side trip was approved at 50% for business, (using the same amount of airfare as above of $2000 with $500 of that coming from your special account), then you would only be able to reimburse 50% of the side trip ($500) or $250.
One final reminder regarding activities: The National Conference Team has included several “tourist type” activities which staff can choose from on a specific day. This activity is permitted as reimbursable ONLY on the day which is stated in the National Conference schedule. The same activity on any other day would not be reimbursable as it is not part of the National Conference schedule. Likewise, any other activity which is of a “tourist type” that is not on the list of approved activities will not be reimbursable. While visiting returnees (or donors), if you participate in an activity which if of a “tourist” nature, it will not be reimbursable. However, any expense which you incur for a returnee or donor may be reimbursed.
If you have specific questions, please comment here so that other staff may benefit from your question and our answer.