Concur Requests & Travel

Columbia University has partnered with World Travel, Inc. (WTI) to assist Columbia travelers in making business travel arrangements, consistent with Columbia’s travel policies and affords several benefits:

  • 24/7 support with changes, cancellations, or itinerary modifications when needed
  • Air or rail travel booked using the Central Pay method will be paid directly (no out-of-pocket reimbursement required)
  • All international travel will be automatically registered for International SOS (ISOS) itinerary monitoring and will receive automatic real-time push alerts for destination countries
  • All international travelers will be automatically registered for international travel insurance coverage through Aetna

If you have any questions, please contact the Concur Team at concur@law.columbia.edu
For travel booking questions, contact World Travel at 1-855-961-0313.  


Transaction Fees
To review a complete description of Business Travel transaction fees for travel booked in the Concur Travel portal or with a WTI Travel Counselor over the phone, refer to the following chart: Transaction Fee Chart 


Personal Travel
Personal travel may not be booked using Concur or via Columbia’s team of business travel counselors at World Travel. Personal bookings of car rentals and hotels at negotiated rates may be made via the Columbia Visitors & Personal Travel Portal.


COVID-19 Resource Guide

Concur Travel Guidance

Set up your Concur profile in order to book travel with Concur or make yourself eligible to receive travel and expense reimbursements. If you have already set up your Concur profile there is no need to take any additional action and can continue to the next step. If you haven't had the opportunity to set up a Concur profile, please follow these guidelines: Setup Your Concur Profile

Pre-trip approval is required in order to book business travel and get reimbursed for travel related expenses when traveling on University business. If travel is booked without a pre-trip, you must submit a pre-trip request post travel and include a justification in the "Comment" section of the pre-trip request. You will not be able to submit an Expense Report without obtaining pre-trip approval beforehand. Watch this video demonstration Submitting a Pre-Trip Request and be sure to follow the guidelines below when submitting your pre-trip/advance request. 


Travel / Cash Advances
You may request an advance as well to cover out-of-pocket, incidental expenses that cannot reasonably be charged to a credit card. Requests should include a description of the circumstance that requires the advance, and a brief budget of expenses.

  • Advances should be reconciled by submitting an Expense Report within 20 working days after the completion of the trip or business activity.
  • If the actual expenses are less than the advance, the traveler must reimburse the University for the unused advance via a personal check.
Requests
  1. Log into Concur 
  2. Click on Requests tab
  3. Click on New Request to start a new request

Note: If you are creating a request on behalf of someone else, be sure to select the "Acting as other user" functionality. 


Guidance for users submitting Pre-Trip/Advance Requests:

Step 1: Select the appropriate "Type of Request" from the drop-down menu:

  • CU Travel Cash Advance - select this option to request a cash advance for travel related expenses.
  • CU Non-Travel Expense/Advance - select this option to request a cash advance for business related expenses (non-travel).
  • CU Pre-Trip Request - select this option to request pre-trip approval to travel and get reimbursed for travel related expenses.
  • CU Pre-Trip Request w Advance - select this option to request pre-trip approval to travel and also request a cash advance for travel related expenses.

Note: The following fields should default from your Concur profile, but you can edit if necessary: School, Division, Sub-Division and Admin Department.

Step 2: Complete the rest of the fields in the request header and be sure to: (1) use the naming convention, (2) provide the speedchart key and speedchart description, and (3) include an adequate and legitimate business purpose for the request.

Add the Traveler's UNI and Traveler's Name as the naming convention in the "Request Name" field, for example:

  • mag2486 Maria Anna Gilbert

Add the SpeedChart Key and SpeedChart Description followed by the business purpose in the "Detailed Business Purpose / Funding Source" field, for example:

  • 55FACOPS Law Faculty Operational Expenses. Travel and lodging to attend the AALS Annual Meeting to be held in New Orleans, Louisiana from August 2-6, 2021.

Note: If you are submitting a pre-trip request post travel, include a justification in the "Comment" section.

Travel and expense dates must match the business purpose and supporting documentation, and estimated expenses entered in the request must be as expected for the requested trip.

Step 3: Click on the "Expenses" tab to start adding your expense items.

Step 4: Click on "Attachments," then click on "Attach Document" to attach supporting documentation for your request (ex. event flyer or invitation).

Step 5: Review your request for completeness and click on "Submit Request"

Note: Pre-trip/advance requests should route to the traveler/payee's supervisor for approval, but if you are prompted to select an Initial Reviewer, select Karen Burgos Santana (kb2875) and follow this Concur Tip: How to choose an Initial Reviewer when submitting an Expense Report

Travel

Log into Concur and click on the Travel tab to start booking


Guidance for users booking travel in Concur

Travelers can book their business travel using self-service via Concur Online Booking Tool (OBT) or over the phone with a WTI travel counselor. Watch the following video to learn how to book travel using WTI travel self-service via the Concur Online Booking Tool:
Video: Using Concur Travel to Purchase International Air, Hotel, and Rental Car (with Narration)

Travelers are advised to contact World Travel, Inc. (WTI) to book their international trip and ensure all requirements are met to travel internationally. Learn more about international travel including emergency contact information in case you experience an emergency abroad: International Travel.

Columbia designated Travel Counselors are available during regular business hours from  8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday (excluding holidays). Book international air travel via WTI:

  • To speak with a WTI Travel Counselor, please call: 1-855-961-0313
  • If calling from outside the United States please call: 1-484-948-2514
  • Email a WTI Travel Counselor

WTI Support
If you need navigational support when booking travel via the Columbia University Concur Travel Online Booking Tool, please call 1-800-221-4730, Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. ET or request assistance via email at onlinehelp@worldtravelinc.com

Reconcile the approved pre-trip/advance request by creating an Expense Report from the approved Request or by importing the Request into an Expense Report already created (Job Aid below), and assign your active transactions to the Expense Report (Concur Tip below). Please follow our Expense Report Guidance when completing the report header of your Expense Report and be sure to: (1) use the naming convention, (2) provide the speedchart key and speedchart description, and (3) include an adequate and legitimate business purpose.

Job Aid: Reconciling Pre-Trip and Travel/Cash Advance Requests
Concur Tip: Assigning Your Transactions to an Expense Report


Note
When you use your CU Corporate Card or Columbia Air/Rail Central Pay to make purchases or reservations for a future business trip, you can add your transactions to an Expense Report to avoid receiving frequent email reminders to reconcile your transactions for the period leading up to your upcoming trip. You do not have to submit the Expense Report until after your trip end date.

In order to book travel on behalf of a colleague, you must be designated the role of Travel Delegate by that person in their Concur profile. Follow these guidelines on how to assign and manage delegates:

Job Aid: Assign and Manage Delegates

Note: Only designated Travel Arrangers can book travel on behalf of Students and Guests.

Travel Arrangers should watch the following video to learn how to book travel for a Guest as a Travel Arranger in Concur Travel:

Video: Travel Arrangers

Book air and rail travel for business trips using the Columbia Air / Rail Central Pay method for the expenses to be centrally paid by the University (no out-of-pocket reimbursement required). 

Air Travel

Columbia Travelers can make domestic and international flight reservations using self-service via the Concur Online Booking Tool or over the phone with a WTI travel counselor. Flights must be booked using coach/economy class airfare. 

First / Business Class
If you need accommodation due to a documented medical condition that has been approved by the University's Leave Management office, need to book a flight that has a scheduled in-air flight time in excess of five hours, or need to travel in first class due to extenuating circumstances, your trip must be approved by our Senior Business Officer, Brendan Mallee. 
Segregation of airfare above the economy/coach rate is required in all cases. The amount above the economy/coach fare must be segregated to the appropriate expense type, a comparison of the coach/economy and business/first-class airfare costs must be provided and documented along with payee justification. 

Learn more about the requirements and restrictions involved when booking air travel: Air Travel   


Rail Travel

Columbia Travelers may book domestic rail travel on Amtrak via the Concur Travel Online Booking Tool. Please call World Travel, Inc. (WTI) for international rail bookings, as international rail may not be booked via Concur Travel. Columbia designated Travel Counselors are available during regular business hours from  8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday (excluding holidays). 

Book international rail via WTI:

  • To speak with a WTI Travel Counselor, please call: 1-855-961-0313
  • If calling from outside the United States please call: 1-484-948-2514
  • Email a WTI Travel Counselor

Learn more about the requirements and restrictions involved when booking rail travel: Rail Travel   

Columbia University has negotiated discounted room rates with the following hotels throughout Manhattan which offer competitive pricing and value-added amenities. Preferred Hotels in New York City:

  • The Edge
  • The Arthouse
  • The Warwick New York
  • The Aloft Harlem

Learn more about the requirements and restrictions involved when booking hotels: Preferred Hotels

The University has a car rental agreement with Hertz, which provides lower negotiated rates and value added benefits (for both domestic and international car rental) to Columbia affiliates when booked through Concur or WorldTravel Inc. Hertz negotiated rates may also be used for personal rentals, but do not include Loss Damage Waiver or Primary Liability Protection.
Note: Personal rentals may not be booked through Concur Travel or World Travel, but may be booked through the Columbia Visitors Travel Portal.

Learn more about the requirements and restrictions involved when booking car rentals: Car Rental

Travelers can be reimbursed for bus, subway, or other mass transportation, shuttle, taxi fares, or private car service plus reasonable tips when traveling on University business.
Note: You can connect your Uber and Lyft apps to your Concur profile and your business trip receipts will automatically be sent to Concur Expense and Expense Items will be automatically generated. Follow this job aid for guidance on how to connect Uber and Lyft apps to Concur:

Job Aid: Connecting Uber and Lyft Apps to Concur

Learn more about using ground transportation: Ground Transportation