The approving authority has responsibility to determine the most appropriate and cost effective means of transportation consistent with the authorized business purpose of the trip, considering all associated costs (e.g. employee work time, overnight lodging, M&IE per diems, mileage).
GUIDELINE: Automobile transportation is generally most appropriate for round trips up to 800 miles but time on the road may also be a factor depending on other responsibilities of the traveler.
Commercial air travel is generally the most economical and practical for longer trips. For ground transportation the costs for personal vehicles mileage, vehicle rentals. campus fleet if available, necessary lodging and meal & incidental expense per diem payments must be compared in the selection.
A traveler may request mileage or rental vehicle reimbursement or payment of a fleet vehicle for personal reasons when air travel would be the most appropriate means of transportation given time and distance. The approving authority can approve the request if the costs do not exceed the cost of coach/economy airfare, taking into consideration the extra time and costs to drive versus fly. Mileage to and from the destination will be based on the most direct route.
Travelers who have heath issues or a disability that require reasonable accommodation consideration, should discuss the needs with the approving authority prior to making any transportation arrangements. Review and approval of any reasonable accommodation request should follow formal institutional procedures.
For determining if vehicle transportation makes the most economical sense, Mapquest or Google Maps are the standard applications for calculating time and distance. Concur is the source for providing quotes for air, vehicle rental and lodging.