Meals (Business or Travel)

Business meals are meals taken with students, donors, colleagues, or individuals from companies during which discussions of specific University business take place.

Travel meals are personal meals that take place on work trips and are more than 50 miles from campus.

Business Meals
1. Should not be charged to a grant or contract unless the terms specifically allow it.
2. Must be charged to an unallowable sub account 30XX. Refer to Financial Policy 1013 for additional information on the treatment of Unallowable Costs.
3. Meals may be provided at select University-sponsored programs such as faculty research seminar series, organized department-level events, talent recruitment, donor engagement, and other University-sponsored initiatives.
4. Meals and catering should not be provided at most other University meetings (with the exception of those listed above). Exceptions can be made for meetings that exceed two hours and include attendees from outside the University, with prior approval by a dean/officer or their designee. All policy exception approvals, as well as any delegation of approval authority, should be documented in writing and attached to the reimbursement as supporting documentation.
5. Meals between University employees (with no external attendees) outside of organized events will not be reimbursed.

Daily Limits
• Breakfast: $20/person
• Lunch: $20/person
• Dinner: $40/person

Required Documentation
• Specific business purpose
• Receipts
• Receipt(s) are required if meal is $75 or more.
• Must include date, name and location of restaurant, and amount of expense.
• Detailed/itemized receipts are preferred.
• Attendees
• If an individual is not a University employee, the individual’s title and the name of the company or institution that the individual represents must be provided.
• If more than 10 people attend, they may be identified as a single body.

Travel Meals
1. For travel meals charged to grants and contracts, please view Travel Meals Charged to Grants and Contracts.
2. It is acceptable to use the federal meal per diem rate in lieu of claiming actual meal costs, though only one method is allowed per trip.

Actual Expense Method
• Required Documentation
• Receipt(s) are required if meal is $75 or more.
• Receipts must include date, name and location of restaurant, and amount of expense.
• Detailed/itemized receipts are preferred.

Per Diem Method
• Refer to the federal per diem rates on the General Services Administration website for domestic travel an the U.S. Department of State website for international travel. Local units may have a more restrictive policy.

• For the first and last days of travel, reduce the per diem by 25%.
• Reduce the per diem for any meals that are provided as part of a conference or as a business meal:
• 25% for breakfast
• 25% for lunch
• 50% for dinner