Travel expenses: claimant guide

The University will only reimburse the costs of travel incurred for a clearly defined and necessary business purpose to an external site for activity that could not otherwise be facilitated at the place of work or online.

If a third party is directly covering costs (for example a conference organiser will pay for your travel and accommodation), ideally arrangements should be made directly with the third party; either they pay the costs directly or an expense claim is submitted to them under their expenses process. If this is not possible, the University may be able to cover the costs (either by paying directly or refunding an expense claim) and cross-charge the third party by invoicing. Written evidence must be obtained in advance that the third party agrees to this arrangement.

Please also consider the University's Travel Policy when making arrangements for travel.


If you are travelling on University business you should use the best value for money method of travel.

Public Transport

Rail, metro, bus, coach, plane

  • Travel should be by standard / economy class; travel by other classes is unlikely to meet the value for money principle
  • In exceptional circumstances, where travel in Premium Economy or Business Class is the only practical option, this should be pre-agreed with the Head of Department (or their authorised delegate) prior to travel being booked. Evidence of the agreement should be retained
  • Travel should be paid for by the University directly, using the preferred supplier when possible

Taxis and mini cabs

May be permitted for short and infrequent journeys.

Hired vehicles

In some circumstances where it is impractical to use public transport, hired vehicles may be needed.

  • Hired vehicles should be booked by the University where possible
  • Hired vehicles may only be kept for as long as necessary for undertaking University business and should not be used for private use


If you hire a vehicle directly you must ensure it is correctly insured for University use.


Private vehicles

If it is necessary to use private vehicles, mileage may only be claimed in line with the standard HMRC rates:

  1. Car/Van:
    • 45p per mile for the first 10,000 miles in each tax year
    • Then 25p per mile thereafter
    • An extra 5p per passenger per mile accompanying for University business can be claimed up to the vehicles designed capacity
  2. Motorcycle/moped: at 24p per mile
  3. Bicycles: at 20p per mile


By submitting an expenses claim for mileage in a private vehicle, the claimant is declaring that they have a valid driving licence, the vehicle is safe, legal and roadworthy, is maintained to the manufacturer’s recommendations and is insured for business use.


Travel charges

Reasonable parking charges, road tolls and congestion charges incurred on University business can be claimed.

Travel insurance for overseas business travel may be reclaimed with departmental approval, only when University insurance cannot be obtained.

Travel visas - Overseas travel

Cost of essential travel visas can be claimed. To determine whether travel is essential please refer to the University's Travel Policy.

Visas for foreign nationals to work in the UK

In some circumstances, departments may agree to pay for or reimburse an individual's costs if they require a visa to work for the University in the UK. Further guidance is available from the Staff Immigration Team.

Only the cost of initial visas for foreign nationals can be claimed via eExpenses. If your department agrees to cover it, visa renewals should be submitted using the Taxable Benefits Expenses claim form.

What should not be claimed

  1. Ordinary commuting between your home and your normal place of work
  2. Charges for parking at your normal place of work
  3. Season/multiple journey tickets where it cannot be proved that they are solely for business use. Only the cost of individual journeys will be refunded
  4. First class travel
  5. Fines e.g. parking or speeding fines
  6. Vaccinations should be arranged via the University’s Travel Clinic (Occupational Health)

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