Below you'll find travel policies for faculty and staff, and procedures for booking hotel rooms on behalf of guests visiting the Law School.
** Effective February 1, 2016, all faculty, staff, and students are required to register their International travel with the Columbia University travel registry system. For more information, please visit http://globaltravel.columbia.edu/.
Valerie Wilson Travel
To make Air/Rail travel arrangements for Columbia affiliates and guests, please contact Valerie Wilson Travel. A representative can be reached at 212-592-1325 or 212-592-1318. All reservations are subject to an agent/service fee of $35 per domestic or $55 per international travel.
Travel Request Cover Form must be completed and submitted internally by an authorized Law School person/department. Travel for students must be requested and pre-approved by Student Services.
Step 1 – Booking
Please create an e-mail message with the subject line: PASSENGER NAME, COLUMBIA LAW SCHOOL, and send the appropriate forms to Valerie Wilson.
Valerie Wilson Booking Forms: Faculty & Staff, Student, or Guest.
Forms can be accessed here: http://web.law.columbia.edu/business-office/key-forms
Step 2 – Requesting Approval
After confirming the reservation with the travel agent, please email the completed Travel Request Cover Form and final itinerary, along with the event flyer, agenda, or invitation to email@example.com for review and approval. Please note: the form must be submitted within 24 hours in order for the travel reservation to be confirmed - otherwise the itinerary will expire.
If applicable, confirm compliance with Columbia University’s International Travel Planning Policy, according to which Columbia persons should register their International Columbia Travel through the University’s global travel portal Register a Trip.
Travel and Business Expense Reimbursements
Columbia University reimburses faculty, staff, students, post-doctoral fellows, and graduate research assistants for necessary and reasonable travel and business expenses. A necessary and reasonable expense is one for which a clear business reason exists and for which the cost is not excessive.
To request reimbursement, submit a Travel and Business Expense Report. For guidance, use the TBER Checklist.
Guidelines for Reimbursement:
- Travel reimbursement requests must be submitted within 10 days after the return.
- Business reimbursement requests should be submitted as the expenses occur.
- The request must be approved (signed) by the employee's supervisor.
According to University policy, reimbursement requests submitted more than 120 days after an expense was incurred are considered taxable income.
All Travel and Business Reimbursements must be accompanied by the following:
- Business Office Coversheet detailing Business reason.
- Travel and Business Expense Report with detailed Business Reason (notate venue, date, names of attendees 10 and under, number of attendees 11 and above). Attach, Seminar/Conference registration receipt, letter of invitation, or event posting.
- Backup documentation of business purpose, such as flyers, email invitations, etc.
- Original receipts, invoices, web confirmations, itemized restaurant receipts (if itemized receipt is not obtained, estimate alcohol expense and notate it on receipt), itemized hotel bills.
- Detailed receipts must identify: Date of purchase, vendor name, itemized list and unit price of purchased items, total amount, show 0 balance due or state paid/paid in full.
- Lost or missing receipts should be noted on the Missing Receipts Worksheet.
- Receipts should be fully taped on 8.5” x 11” paper in chronological order.
Download the ARC Travel and Business Expense Form
The Purchasing Team at Columbia University has negotiated with several New York City hotels to secure low rates for incoming guests and groups. To review our list of preferred hotel vendors and rates, the Campus Travel website. Click on Preferred NYC Hotels. 2016 rates can be found here.
Only reservations at the preferred hotels can be paid for on the Law School P-card:
- The Lucerne Hotel
- NYLO Hotel
- The Aloft Hotel
- Hotel Belleclaire
- Hotel Beacon
Download the Hotel Reservations Form →
Please note: Reservations for employees of Columbia University may not be paid for directly with the Law School P-card. These reservations must be paid for by the employee and then submitted for reimbursement.
For Individual Guests at Local Hotels
Step One: Call the hotel to ensure availability and make a reservation. Please note: some hotels may not allow you to make reservations without a credit card. If this happens, follow Step Three. We have accounts set up with The Lucerne, NYLO, and The Beacon Hotel—when calling, announce that you are calling from Columbia University Law School. Your reservation is not confirmed until you follow the remaining steps.
Step Two: Complete the Hotel Reservation form below by filling in the highlighted areas with your information, and forward to Karen Burgos by email. Please attach any conference agendas, invitations, or other supporting documentation containing the event details to properly establish a business purpose. Be sure to fill out requester contact information, brief business purpose, and where payment should be charged.
Step Three: Upon approval, the Business Office will fax the payment authorization on your behalf. We recommend that you follow up with the hotel to confirm the reservation is complete.
For Group Visits
Step One: Trip/event coordinator makes all hotel reservations independently.
Step Two: Trip/event coordinator advises hotel of payment by corporate credit card.
Step Three: The hotel will ask the coordinator that the Law School submit a Credit Card Authorization Form by fax; typically, this form is emailed to the coordinator.
Step Four: Trip/event coordinator provides Gabriele Werffeli at the Law School Business Office with the following information:
- Credit Card Authorization Form
- Name of Traveling Party/Event
- Hotel/Venue Name
- Reservation Number
- Rate per night + tax
- ARC Department
- LAW Project (Grant or Event Name)
- Business Purpose with proof of event (ie: official invitation, flyer, etc.)
Step Five: Immediately upon completion of the trip/event, the trip/event coordinator submits a billing statement and/or folio of the stay to Gabriele Werffeli.
*** As soon as the Business Office has received all the information listed under Step 4, we will send out the Credit Card Authorization and confirm the booking with a fax transmission receipt to the attention of the trip/event coordinator. We recommend trip/event coordinators follow up with the hotel to confirm the receipt of the Credit Card Authorization.
1. It is imperative that the trip/event coordinator never shares or submits personal credit card details to the hotel. Providing the hotel with a personal credit card will result in the full charge on that card.
2. The corporate card is limited to room and tax charges only. Any attempt to charge incidentals to this card will revoke the authorization to charge this card at all. Incidental services (such as room service, mini bar, telephone, internet, etc) must not be charged to the room.
The Columbia Law School accounts with Minute Men and Odyssey are available for use by Columbia University employees and should be used for business purposes only.
For first time users, complete the car service form below and email to the Business Office requesting the account number. For all subsequent reservations, submit the form to the Business Office for billing purposes. Failure to submit this form will result in your discontinued use of the account.
Download the Car Service Form →