ARMA InternationalARMA International Governance Current Policies and Procedures

POL3-019 Exhibit C



ARMA International Travel Policies and Procedures


The following constitutes the official travel policy for ARMA International. This policy covers all persons traveling on behalf of ARMA International on official business for ARMA International.


Each Traveler is personally accountable for compliance with this policy. The appropriate HQ staff liaison of ARMA International is responsible for initial review and approval of expenses submitted in accord with the policy. Approval of extraordinary expenses for ARMA staff is at the discretion of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Approval of extraordinary expenses for the CEO, ARMA Board members and all other persons traveling on ARMA business is at the discretion of the Treasurer and President.



Guiding Principles

  1. As ARMA is a member-supported organization, all expenditures of ARMA funds must be made with an eye towards the perception of members with regard to the expense. We expect travelers to use good judgment and discretion when deciding to incur particular expenses.


  1. Travel is frequently the way we do business and work with members and partnering organizations. Travel is also a controllable expense for the Association. We expect each Traveler to keep travel expenses as low as possible for our organization. 


  1. We expect all travelers to consider safety and security in their travel decisions.


  1. We expect all travelers to follow the requirements of civil authorities in the jurisdictions where travel takes place and to be aware and respectful of diverse cultures and customs.



Oversight for Travel

Travel by ARMA staff members is subject to direction of the CEO, within the bounds of this policy and limitations of the Association’s budget, as currently revised.


Travel by the CEO, Board of Directors, and all other persons traveling on official ARMA business is subject to the authority of the officers of the Board of Directors, within the bounds of this policy and limitations of the approved budget of the Association, as currently revised.


The intent of this statement is to ensure the delineation of authority of approval of travel. Generally, travel that has been budgeted should be considered approved. It is always preferred that travel plans be discussed with the person or persons responsible for travel oversight, prior to booking travel.


A copy of the travel itinerary should be sent to the appropriate HQ staff liaison as soon as reservations are made. The itinerary will be used to facilitate reservations for sleeping rooms when provisioned by ARMA, as well as for locating travelers.



Combining Travel / Changes

Any increase in travel costs that results from combining official ARMA travel with personal or company travel (i.e. non ARMA business), is to be paid by the Traveler.  When applicable, Saturday night (or other additional night) stays may be considered when the airfare savings exceeds reasonable and usual business expenses (lodging and meals). If the additional hotel and meal costs do not offset the airfare savings, the Traveler will be required to reimburse ARMA for the additional costs. Travelers will not be reimbursed for any charge to change an airline flight reservation, hotel guarantee or other penalty unless it is a direct result in a change in the Traveler’s schedule by request of ARMA, or is directly related to a personal or family emergency.


Changes to travel plans due to circumstances beyond the Traveler’s control (including, but not limited to: weather, mechanical breakdowns of third party transportation, disruption of transportation systems, etc.) which result in expense to the Traveler will be reimbursed.



Loss of Baggage / Excess Baggage Charges / Customs Duties / Taxes

ARMA International is not responsible for lost or stolen baggage or other items while the Traveler is traveling on ARMA business. ARMA will not reimburse the Traveler for insurance deductibles or other costs incurred, with the exception of limited sundries and medically necessary medications and prescriptions.


Travelers are cautioned to observe baggage restrictions by airlines when traveling. When considering airfares, travelers should also give consideration to airline charges for baggage handling. Excess baggage or overweight baggage charges will not be reimbursed, except when the Traveler is carrying baggage or contents of baggage at the direction of ARMA (i.e. brochures, handouts, equipment, etc.).


ARMA will not reimburse Customs duties unless such duties are incurred by the conveyance of ARMA property or goods for sale.


Taxes directly related to official ARMA travel, including, but not limited to: airport taxes, entry and exit taxes, etc. are reimbursable.



Passports and Visas

For ARMA staff, the cost of obtaining or renewing a passport, including photographs, is a reimbursable expense, so long as the Traveler is required by ARMA to travel internationally. For other ARMA travelers, passport expenses are only reimbursable when ARMA business travel is the sole reason for obtaining or renewing a passport.


The cost of visas and related expenses are reimbursable for all travelers when required for official ARMA travel.


The cost of expedited services is not reimbursable unless required to meet ARMA travel requirements.



Receipts and Expense Forms

Expense reimbursement forms for all expenses are required to be submitted within 45 days of the date the expense was incurred. Unless otherwise approved by the Treasurer, reimbursement for expenses over 45 days old will not be made.


Receipts are required for all expenses, with the exception of:


  • Tips made in cash
  • Meals paid in cash that do not exceed $15 (generally, fast food, food carts, stadium vendors, etc.)


A detailed description of the expense is required when no receipt is submitted.


Meal expenses covering multiple travelers should include the full name of all persons in attendance at the meal.


Expense reimbursements will be paid in United States or Canadian dollars. The Traveler should indicate which currency is to be used. When currency conversions are required, the Traveler should include an indication of how the conversion was performed. When using a credit card statement or bank statement as evidence of the calculation, the Traveler should include a redacted version of the statement.


Issuance and Use of ARMA Credit Cards

ARMA International issues a credit card to members of the Executive Council, the Executive Director, and ARMA staff Directors and some staff managers who frequently travel on behalf of ARMA.  The credit card is issued with the express understanding that it is to be used for ARMA business expenses only.


Only the named cardholder may incur charges against the card.


The card may not be used to obtain cash.


Expenses incurred on the card must be reported monthly, by the 5th day of the month.  Original receipts should accompany the expense report.


Charges that are not reported on the expense form will be considered personal / unauthorized charges and are the responsibility of the cardholder.  Abuse of the credit card may result is loss of credit card privileges.  In the case of ARMA staff, disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment may result.  For other persons, disciplinary action in accord with ARMA’s By Laws may result.  In addition, applicable civil or criminal law penalties may be sought by ARMA International.



Use of Travel Agents / Online Booking

Travelers, in most instances, should make their own transportation arrangements to minimize the impact upon ARMA staff.  The most preferable method is to make the reservation online directly with the airline (no up charge) or with an online service such as Expedia, Travelocity, etc. (minimal up charge).  If the Traveler can obtain lower fares via the Traveler’s company travel agency (where permissible), the Traveler should utilize that option for reservations.  Full service travel agents may be used.  Travelers should understand that travel agents generally charge a service or booking fee.  Consideration should be given to utilizing travel agents with 24 hour availability for emergencies.


Travelers with higher level frequent flyer status generally obtain special reservation numbers to expedite travel arrangements and emergency changes.  Note that most airlines now charge for reservations made by phone.


For Travelers who do not wish to incur the cost of a reservation on their personal credit card, the ARMA staff liaison may use their ARMA credit card to complete the purchase of the booking.  The Traveler should identify the arrangements and make note of the preferred reservation times, or complete a booking and place the booking on hold, then contact the ARMA staff liaison to purchase the booking on their behalf.





Travelers are to make their own air travel reservations.  The reservation should be made early enough to qualify for the lowest possible coach fare and preferably at least 30 days prior to the date of travel, whenever reasonable. In general, all Travelers should obtain non-refundable fares.  Fares for round trip air travel within the United States and Canada should not exceed $750.  International round trip air fares should not exceed $1200.  The ARMA staff liaison must be notified prior to purchase of any fare that is in excess of these amounts or when a refundable fare is being purchased.  The ARMA staff liaison will work with the Traveler to identify alternate arrangements or approve the expense in advance and adjust the travel budget accordingly.


Travel using low cost airlines is not required.  While cost is always a consideration, reliability, safety, and alternate options to reach the Traveler’s destination are higher priorities.  Frequent flyer program benefits must in no way influence flight selection when significantly lower fares are available on comparable airlines at comparable times. 



ARMA will not pay for upgradeable airfare if a lower coach fare is available.  Travelers will not be reimbursed for any upgrade-related expenses.


Airport Transportation / Parking

In most instances, ARMA HQ will arrange local transportation in the city where an ARMA-sponsored event is being held.  When ARMA HQ has arranged transportation, travelers are required to use the pre-arranged transportation services and will not be reimbursed for alternative means of transport unless the ARMA-arranged transport is unavailable.


Transportation to or from the Traveler’s home and the airport is reimbursable.  Travelers should weigh the cost of airport parking against airport shuttles, taxi, private car or limousine services.  In general travelers are expected to use good judgment in selecting airport transportation, taking into account departure and arrival times, personal safety, and less costly options.  When using private car or limousine services, travelers are expected to opt for shared rides unless unavailable.


Airport parking is also reimbursable. Again, travelers should take into account less costly options, including long term parking lots, off-airport locations, etc.  Guiding principles should include departure and arrival times and safety.  Extremely costly airport parking services (valet versus self park) and ancillary services (car washes, oil change services, etc.) are not reimbursable.


Rental Cars

In general, rental cars are not reimbursable when alternate means of transportation are available or have otherwise been arranged by ARMA HQ.  Use of rental cars for staff must be explicitly approved by the CEO. For the CEO and the Board and all other ARMA travelers, approval of rental car use must be made by the officers of the Board of Directors.  Most credit cards (including the ARMA credit card) provide minimal insurance coverage for rental cars.  In addition, some personal auto insurance policies provide coverage for rental cars.  In most instances, additional insurance coverage from the rental car company is not required.  However, the Traveler is obligated to ensure that adequate insurance coverage has been obtained.  When giving consideration to rental car use, the Traveler must also consider related parking fees and the cost of fuel and tolls.


Travelers should avoid “discount” car rental companies as these companies tend to go over a returned vehicle with a fine tooth comb and claim every small bit of damage against the driver’s insurance, particularly when the driver has not purchased insurance from the rental car company.


Use of Personal Vehicles

Travel by personal car in lieu of commercial airlines is allowed if mileage reimbursement would not exceed the lowest available airfare normally utilized.  The rate for mileage reimbursement will be the current rate set by the Internal Revenue Service as the “Standard Mileage Rate”.  The Traveler will be reimbursed to a maximum of the airfare, plus normally incurred airport transportation or airport parking (as appropriate) at each end of the Traveler’s itinerary.


Tolls, Parking, Fuel, Parking Violations, Moving Violations

Tolls and parking expenses are reimbursable for travelers using rental cars or their personal automobile. Fuel is reimbursable for rental cars only.


Parking and moving violations are not reimbursable.  Penalties incurred by using electronic toll collection lanes without the appropriate transponder will not be reimbursed.


Common Carriers

With the exception of rental cars and private auto use as noted above, reimbursement for transportation will be permitted only for common carriers. Selection of the mode of transportation is at the Traveler’s discretion, although the cost of the selected mode should not exceed the cost of air transportation between home and destination.



Lodging at ARMA events will normally be arranged by ARMA HQ.  Travelers must utilize the lodging arrangements provided by ARMA International.  In most instances, the cost of lodging will be submitted to a master bill and the Traveler will be responsible for incidentals.  Travelers may not be released from the master bill.


In general, ARMA will pay for lodging from the night prior to the beginning of the event or meeting through (and including) the night of the last day of the meeting or event.  For certain events, travelers will be advised of the number of nights of lodging that will be provided or reimbursed by ARMA.  Where possible, travelers should seek to minimize the number of nights of lodging required.  However, travelers should make every attempt to arrive far enough in advance of the meeting or event that unexpected travel delays will not jeopardize their contributions to the meeting or event.  In addition, travelers should schedule return transportation in a manner which does not cut short their attendance at the meeting or event.


Travelers going to other conferences or events as a representative of ARMA should utilize hotels recommended by the event organizer.  For all other lodging choices, travelers should obtain reasonable accommodations for the market, taking into account safety, travel distance to the ultimate destination, cost of transportation, availability of meals, etc.  Frequent stay programs should not affect hotel selection.




Meals and beverages will be reimbursed up to a total of $75 per day. This amount is not to be seen as a per diem or a daily entitlement.  Rather, it is intended to set a reasonable guideline for assuring that travelers are able to be reimbursed for meals appropriately during their travel.  Certain travel markets may require a greater daily expense, but travelers are urged to make every effort to stay within this guidance. This guidance assumes the following meal costs:


Breakfast:         $15

Lunch:              $20

Dinner:              $40


Within the daily reimbursement limit, ARMA International will reimburse the cost of beverages that are consumed as incidental to a meal during the course of travel relating to official ARMA business.  This applies equally to alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.  Beverages consumed at a bar prior to or after a meal will not be reimbursed.  The cost of food consumed should always exceed the cost of beverages consumed at the meal.  The sole exception to this guideline is that non-alcoholic beverages consumed in an airport or on an aircraft at any time during travel may be reimbursed, due to the changing requirements of air travel security.  Such reimbursement will not count against the daily reimbursement limit.


Where meals are provided by ARMA, considered part of the hotel room rate, or otherwise not needed during travel, the daily maximum will be adjusted accordingly.  The intent of this statement is to ensure that ARMA is not paying for a meal in addition to a meal cost that has already been accounted for during a meeting or other event.  For good reason, exceptions to this guideline will be considered.


Room service expenses are reimbursable, within the daily meal reimbursement limit.  Travelers should use discretion in utilizing room service and carefully review the check that is presented.  In many cases, a gratuity is included in the charges and no additional gratuity need be added.


Expense reimbursements for meals purchased by the Traveler for others must include the name(s) of all persons, their affiliation (if not apparent), and the purpose of the expense (if not apparent).  Travelers should use extreme discretion in purchasing meals for others and be prepared to provide a business justification.




Incidental expenses will not be reimbursed. Such expenses include, but are not limited to:


  • Mini-bar charges
  • In-room movies or other entertainment charges (including charges for headphones on airline flights)
  • Purchases at a hotel or airport gift shop
  • ATM fees for domestic travel
  • Expenses directly relating to individuals who are not authorized to travel on ARMA business and are not party to business with ARMA International



Frequent Flyer Miles, Frequent Stay Points, Other Frequent Traveler and Travel Points Programs

All credits obtained by travelers in the course of official ARMA business travel are the property of the Traveler, with the exception of credits or points obtained by ARMA through use of ARMA’s credit cards or other travel programs.  Travelers should not select an airline or a hotel solely on the basis of program affinity,


At the Traveler’s discretion, the Traveler’s miles or points may be used for upgrades, free travel, or free hotel stays. These benefits may be used in conjunction with ARMA travel and may be used to extend travel or otherwise leverage ARMA business travel, to the extent that the use of such miles or points do not increase ARMA’s expenses.  Travelers who use their own miles or points in lieu of ARMA reimbursement for permitted travel will not be reimbursed for such use.


Valet Laundry

Reimbursement for hotel laundry (valet) services is not reimbursable except for necessary laundering services on trips of over five nights’ stay (or consecutive trips – trips with less than 48 hours at home between arrival and departure – cumulatively totaling five nights or more), and then only to a maximum of $50 per trip.  Consideration will be made for exceptions to this policy when ARMA travel is at the end of, or between, business travel required by the Traveler’s employer.


Airline Clubs

Reimbursement of airline club expenses (either annual or day passes) is not allowed, except for ARMA staff whose annual ARMA business-related travel regularly exceeds 50,000 miles or 60 segments.  For such individuals, one airline club annual membership will be provided.  Reimbursement of airline club memberships should be treated within appropriate taxable income guidelines published by the Internal Revenue Service and tax liabilities are the responsibility of the Traveler.



Obtaining flight Insurance (including, but not limited to: supplemental life insurance, lost luggage insurance, trip protection insurance, etc.) coverage while traveling is at the Traveler’s option and is not reimbursable.  Travelers should review the terms and conditions of insurance coverage provided by their credit card company and / or homeowner’s insurance policy as an automatic option for this sort of coverage.  In addition, international air travel provides certain standards for airline reimbursement for lost luggage.


Medical insurance for international travel is covered and reimbursable.  Medical insurance for Travelers is intended for short-term coverage during the period of time Traveler is on official ARMA business and such insurance is not available as part of the Traveler’s normal medical insurance coverage.  Emergency Medical Evacuation insurance, as a separate policy, is not reimbursable for travel within Canada and the United States.  It is Traveler’s responsibility to purchase this medical coverage when needed.  If the Traveler will regularly need this coverage during the course of a year and an annual policy is less expensive than individual short term policies, the Traveler may purchase an annual coverage plan.


International Currency Exchange

When traveling internationally, travelers may claim expenses inclusive of fees for currency exchange and ATM charges.  Travelers are encouraged to make purchases using credit cards whenever possible.



Internet Access Reimbursement and Telephone Charges

Internet Charges

Internet usage charges in hotels may be submitted for reimbursement.  Internet usage charges incurred elsewhere (at Internet cafes, at airports, etc.) during the course of travel may be submitted for reimbursement. Where high speed Internet is not available and the Traveler must use a modem to connect, the cost of the modem connection is reimbursable, although travelers are cautioned to limit the use of modem connections and terminate the connection as quickly as possible to reduce the expense.


Whenever possible, travelers should make use of free Internet access services; or, while at ARMA HQ, utilize Internet access at ARMA HQ.


Telephone Charges

Telephone charges are a key area of concern for expense control.  In general, hotels charge considerably more than the average cost of a telephone call.  Travelers should always ask the hotel for an explanation of charges that may be incurred prior to using hotel phone systems for calls or modem connections.


In general, ARMA will pay for a daily call home of a reasonable length.  Travelers are encouraged to use calling cards, cell phones, or phones provided by ARMA whenever possible.


Cell phone charges directly attributable to ARMA business needs are reimbursable.  This may include roaming charges, overages of minutes, etc.  A Traveler incurring roaming charges from calls to their home while on ARMA business may submit the expense.


At certain times, ARMA HQ may distribute prepaid calling cards to staff or volunteers for the purpose of calling home or conducting ARMA business telephonically. It is expected that such calling cards will be used with discretion and that they will be returned to ARMA when no longer needed for ARMA business.





Falsification of travel expense forms or gross abuse of these policies and guidelines may result in discipline, up to and including termination of employment.  Restitution of all losses to ARMA will be required.


Board and all other Travelers

Falsification of travel expense forms or gross abuse of these policies and guidelines may result in disciplinary action in accord with ARMA’s By Laws.  Restitution of all losses to ARMA will be required.


ARMA International reserves the right to pursue civil or criminal law penalties when deemed necessary.










Questions about previous Policies & Procedures? Contact Connie Hardy, Corporate Secretary.