Using the Card for Travel


The Visa Corporate Card is a multi-purpose charge card that covers over 95 percent of all transportation, lodging, meals, car rentals and gas. The Corporate Card can be used in place of all other payment methods for all ticketing and miscellaneous travel charges.

The card may also be used for material purchase while in travel status, not to exceed departmental set units.

Registration Fees and Deposits

The Corporate Card may be used for conference registrations and to guarantee overnight accommodations by phone or fax. Any deposits or registration fees are the responsibility of the cardholder.

Cash Advances

You may have been authorized to receive cash advances from an ATM (Automated Teller Machine) using your Corporate Card. If you have, you will be issued a PIN (Personal Identification Number). To ensure the security of your PIN, correspondence regarding the PIN will be directed to your home address.

If separate mailing of the PIN number is not received in time for travel, the cardholder has the option to call the customer service number on the back of the credit card (1-800-270-7760) to create their own 4 digit PIN number real time.

There is a 2.5 percent fee assessed on all cash advances with a minimum fee of $2.50. These fees will be billed directly to the Accounts Payable Office and not the individual cost centers/projects.

Individual banks have maximum withdrawal restrictions ranging from $350 to $500 per day. Any amount in excess of these restrictions may be obtained through a bank teller.

There is a limit of total cash advances a cardholder may have outstanding. This limit, usually $2,500, is set by the bank and is based on your total credit limit. When payments are made the cash advance limit is restored.

Hotel Confirmations

You may wish to use your Corporate Card to confirm "late arrival" hotel reservations. It is the responsibility of the individual cardholder to cancel his or her confirmed reservations. A cancellation number must be obtained to avoid incurring "no show" expenses. The Institution does not reimburse for "no show" fees.

Personal Charges

The Institution realizes that some personal charges on the Corporate Card are unavoidable. As an example, there may be items appearing on a hotel bill, some meals, movies, etc. that are the responsibility of the cardholder.

Please be aware that appropriate staff of the Institution periodically review charges made with the Corporate Card. Abuse of the Corporate Card for personal use will result in suspension of card privileges.


As with all reimbursements, itemized receipts are required for all expenses charged to the Corporate Card over $75.00 effective March 8, 2010. All receipts must be submitted with the Expense Voucher in Unanet.  Please refer to the Travel Guide located on the Web for more information regarding receipts.

Extended Travel

In the event a traveler is traveling on WHOI business for an extended period (30 days or more) that would preclude the traveler from reviewing and processing payments for their corporate card, the traveler may request Extended Travel Status. This will authorize the Card Program Manager to pay charges incurred during the travel and charge your Travel Advance Account.
» Extended Travel Request Form

Travel Expense Reimbursement

Individual cardholders are responsible for processing payment for all charges made to the corporate card. WHOI now uses the Unanet Expense Tool (Unanet Expense Training Document). This tool allows reimbursement to be paid directly to the card. Payment can also be made directly, by the cardholder to the card issuer and then request reimbursement to themselves. This ensures the cardholder can keep track of payments made to the card issuer more accurately.

To receive reimbursement for expenses charged to the corporate card and paid by the cardholder, please submit an Expense Voucher in the Unanet system. Reimbursement will be made via the employee’s paycheck.

If a cardholder desires, WHOI will make payments directly to the corporate card issuer for items listed on an Expense Voucher. This in no way relieves the individual cardholder of their responsibility for monitoring payments but does alleviate the need to use personal funds for business expenses.  In order to be reimbursed for expenses incurred or to substantiate prepaid expenses, a traveler must submit an Expense Voucher via the Unanet Expense Tool system accompanied by appropriate receipts. The approved and completed Expense Voucher must be submitted via Unanet  within 60 days of the traveler's return from each trip. If not, the reimbursement will become taxable income under the IRS Accountable Plan rules (Publication 463 Travel, Entertainment, Gift, and Car Expenses). In this situation the Institution will pay reimbursement via payroll and the appropriate taxes will be withheld.

In all situations, the cardholder should contact the card issuer regarding payment problems.


Foreign Currency

Using the Corporate Card while in travel status insures the conversion rate will be the lowest available to the banking industry at the time of the transaction. Information from your statement will reflect the foreign exchange rate associated with your charge and facilitates reconciliation of your expenses as you are charged in US dollars. This does not prohibit the cardholder from requesting reimbursement prior to receipt of a card provider statement, but doing so may cause confusion in expense reconciliation.


If the Institution has reimbursed an individual for a charge made to the corporate card and a credit is issued to reverse the charge, it is the responsibility of the cardholder to reimburse the project or cost center.

Last updated: May 11, 2016