Meal expenses and any tips related to meals will be reimbursed via the meal and incidentals
per diem in ERS. The meal and incidentals per diem is established by the General Services
Administration of the federal government, and differentiates allowances by geographic
location. Lodging for travel outside the continental United States (OCONUS) will also be
reimbursed by per diem.
Adding Per Diem to Report
1. Create an itinerary or assign an itinerary to report
2. On Details menu select Travel Allowances.
3. Select the Expenses & Adjustments tab.
4. Click the Create Expenses button to add the per diem allowances to the report.
5. Each allowance will create a Fixed Meal entry for that day of travel. (If travel is
OCONUS a Fixed Lodging entry will also be created.)
Per Diem for Partial Days
In compliance with the University Travel Policy, for any partial travel days the application
will prorate that day’s per diem based on a 24-hour day, and the meal allocation will
correspond to the hours of the day a person is on travel status as per the 2007 Travel Policy
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PARTIAL DAY PER DIEM TABLE
Time of Travel Status Percent of Meal Per Diem
Travel status from 12:01 20 percent of meal per diem
a.m. to 10:00 a.m. for the location
Travel status from 10:01 30 percent of meal per diem
a.m. to 4:00 p.m. for the location
Travel status from 4:01 50 percent of meal per diem
p.m. to 12:00 a.m. for the location
Provided Meals or Lodging
If any meals were provided during travel (i.e. by a conference or a group meal) they must
be marked provided in the Expenses & Adjustments window.
Select the checkbox corresponding to the provided meal to remove that meal
allowance from the daily per diem.
Every checkbox selected will subtract that portion of the daily allowance from
the allowance amount.
Be sure the meal was included in the allowance before marking provided.
The first and last days of travel may have partial per diem amounts. Meals
are not included based on time of departure or arrival back.
If all meals are marked provided for one day the allowance amount will be the
incidental amount for that location.
Group Meals & Per Diem:
The Travel Policy requires that if per diem is requested and the travel also
includes a Group Meal, the per diem (travel allowance) must be adjusted to
reflect the Group Meal as a provided meal.
Checkbox for the meal is checked denoting a provided meal.
Individual PCARD Meals & Per Diem:
Individual meals purchased with a PCARD are not provided meals, do not
select the meal provided checkbox.
Per Diem meals corresponding to individual PCARD meals must be included to
offset the amount deducted for the PCARD meal.
To exclude an entire day’s allowance including the incidentals allowance use
the Exclude checkbox in the far left column. See screen shot above.
Allowance amount for the day will be $0.00.
Personal days of travel included in the itinerary are marked Exclude.
To remove the lodging per diem for the day select the Overnight checkbox.
Only OCONUS locations add lodging per diem to the allowance amount.
Remove the fixed lodging allowance for any day that OCONUS Actual Lodging
will be reimbursed.
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The incidental allowance for a location is automatically included in the
allowance amount for the day.
The incidental allowance for locations within the Continental US is $5.00 per
The incidental allowance for locations outside the Continental US (including
Hawaii and Alaska) is variable and is updated monthly. The date of travel
determines the rate for the location.
In the event all meals for a day are provided by a conference, a business
group meal, or another source, no meal per diem can be claimed for that day.
However, the incidental per diem amount may still be claimed at the
When all provided meals and lodging have been identified, click Create Expenses. Each
day of meal per diem allowance will be entered in the Expense List as a Fixed Meal entry.
The lodging allowance will be entered as a Fixed Lodging entry.
Steps for Adding Meal Per Diem and then Reducing to Actuals Spent
1. Create Itinerary
2. Add Per Diem to Report:
In Travel Allowances on the Expenses & Adjustments tab.
Mark provided meals and lodging as needed.
Use Exclude checkbox for removing entire per diem amount for the day.
When edits are complete, click the Create Expenses button to add the per diem
allowances to the report. See screen shot below.
Each allowance will create a Fixed Meal entry for that day of travel. (If travel is
OCONUS a Fixed Lodging entry will also be created.)
Revised 9/24/2012 3
Note the Total Requested amount at this point. It is the total of the per diem
amounts. This is the Per Diem Total. It will be used in calculating actuals spent.
3. Check for PCARD Meal charges and Import into Expense List.
Smart Expenses List will open automatically in the right pane. If it is not open
use the Import button on the menu bar to open it.
Look for PCARD Meal charges that are for individual meals. (Group Meals are not
included in these calculations).
Select and import the individual PCARD Meals – if there are any.
Select and open each imported PCARD Meal expense one at time.
In each PCARD Meal expense place a check in the checkbox for “Deduct
from Reimbursement” and Save. (The deduct checkbox causes the
PCARD amount to be subtracted from the cash reimbursement in the
report. The system places the personal icon on the expense.)
Total up the amounts of the PCARD Meals. This is the PCARD Meal Total.
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4. Total Out of Pocket Spent on Meals
Total up any cash or personal credit card
amounts spent on meals and incidentals.
This will be the Cash Meal Total.
5. Find Actual Spent on Meals and Incidentals
Add PCARD Meal Total and Cash Meal
This is the Actual Meal Costs.
6. Find Difference between Actuals and Per
Subtract the ACTUAL MEAL COSTS from the
PER DIEM TOTAL.
This amount is the remaining per diem amount – the Reimbursable Per Diem.
7. Add Reimbursement Reduction Entry
Select New Expense and select the Reimbursement Reduction expense type
Enter the Reimbursable Per Diem amount (from the above calculation) as a
negative number in the Amount field.
Enter a comment in the Comment field that this reduces the per diem to actuals.
Select Save. See screen shot below.
8. Check Totals to Verify Amounts
Open Report Totals on the Details menu.
The Amount Due to Employee should reflect the reduction made. The employee
is not receiving any additional per diem reimbursement beyond the amount that
was out of pocket (cash or personal credit card). Would be $0.00 if all individual
meals were on the PCARD and there was no out of pocket. See screen shot below.
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