The UW System is consolidating UW sponsored lodging spend with contracted commercial hotel facilities within the State of Wisconsin and select cities outside of Wisconsin. In addition to UW System contracts, UW System Administration has formally contracted or entered into partnership agreements with other consortium organizations (referred to as “Partnership Programs”) to offer rates at government or negotiated rates that are within UW System Travel Policy rate limits for the location & season of travel. These rates are exclusively offered in the managed booking channel, through Concur or with our travel agency partners and the properties with negotiated or consortium rates are required to be utilized when available in the location.
What are the benefits?
- Consolidating System-wide lodging spend with fewer hotels in top destinations leverages greater availability of government based rates, provides enhanced services and favorable terms and conditions, such as included amenities and later cancellation periods.
- Utilizing Concur or one of our travel agency partners as a means of making individual reservations affords the following:
- Efficiency in process for making air, car and hotel reservations in one process.
- Provides users a single and consolidated source to shop lodging from contract and consortium properties, AAA and AARP membership hotels (when selected in the Concur profile) in addition to the daily published and promotional rates from any hotel selling inventory through the global distribution system for internet based reservations.
- Affords ability to store hotel rewards member information and pass this with reservation data, allowing travelers to save department dollars by accruing complementary stays for business use.
- Provides the ability to support travelers in the event of emergency or when travel doesn’t go as planned.
- Provides a platform for data collection between the UW System and contracted lodging properties to identify volume usage for continued contract rates and terms.
- Protects UW rates from unauthorized use.
UW System contract properties and partnership property program hotels were selected after responding with bid to the UW System Request for Proposal. Bids were evaluated by a committee and selection was based on meeting or exceeding the following requirements:
- Costs: Rates for standard sleeping rooms at state government, negotiated and/or discounted rates that are within UW System Travel Policy rate limits for the location & season of travel and included amenities that would have otherwise cost the UW additional travel dollars.
- Accessibility: In addition to employees, rates and terms made available for non-employees, consultants/contractor and enrolled students when traveling for UW purpose.
- Quality: Industry rating of 2 stars or above.
- Location: Proximity to primary business locations within Wisconsin, including UW campuses and for other domestic locations, city center, convention center, airport, higher education institution, government agencies etc..
- Availability: With advanced reservations, consistent room availability at contract or partner program rates with limited blackout periods.
- Policy: No prepayment requirements outside a one-night deposit for a multi-night stay and lenient cancellation terms with reduced or eliminated penalty fees for early/late check-outs, etc..
Financial data was used to determine most frequently utilized hotels, top travel destinations and locations. This information was also used to determine how many contract hotels to consolidate with in any given location.
A listing of 2020 UW System contract properties is available on UW TravelWIse under Policies & Resources in a comprehensive hotel directory. See the UW System Hotel Directory. The directory is searchable by location and contains summary details of the property, including negotiated rates.
The department may make non-employee and student reservations within Concur, by the department contacting the Travel Consultant Team at Travel Incorporated or by establishing an administrative group (if you want the guest or student to be able to work directly with Travel Inc).
As the reservation process only guarantees the room and lodging is required to be paid by the traveler at check-out, central payment by purchasing card is dependent on the department completing credit card authorization form (obtained from the hotel) and returning that form to the property.
Note: Athletic students/guests should be booked with Short's Travel Management
UW System contract and partnership lodging properties will display as “Most Preferred or Preferred for UW System” within Concur, and these properties will be returned first when searching Concur for the location of travel. You will click on “Rates” or “Get Rates” to view the different available rates and room types at that hotel.
Usually UW travelers are not eligible for any government rates that are available in other states, this includes those listed in Concur. These rates are generally only for state and other governmental employees of that particular state. We caution against taking these rates as UW travelers have experienced being denied the state government rate as they aren’t an employee of that state with proper identification. This results in the traveler having to pay a higher rate. It is highly recommended that you use consortium hotels at government based rates whenever available to avoid these issues.
Reserve a non-preferred hotel within Concur or with an agent that has a standard room available within the UW maximum for the location. Document the expense with the Agency E-Itinerary/Lodging Confirmation and hotel receipt.
Concur displays live daily inventory directly from hotel suppliers therefore many rates and room types found in Concur are not specific to the UW. You will find rates and room types above what UW policy allows – and you’ll also at times find lower rates than what the UWS has contracted for. Users must adhere to the location rate maximums and only reserve single/standard rooms, utilizing UW contract rates whenever available in the location . Concur will alert users when over the UW established maximum for the location.
Payments must be made at check-out by the traveler using charge cards as required by the institution. Lodging costs will be reimbursed to the traveler after approval and audit.
Effective July 1, 2020 the UW travel policy allows for full prepayment of individual lodging costs. If a traveler books a room that requires full prepayment, the payment is due at the time the reservation is made. It is the responsibility of the traveler to review and understand all cancellation policies as many rooms that require prepayment are also noncancellable.
Note: With the exception of reservations that require full prepayment, reservations in Concur or with agents only “holds/guarantees” the reservation.
The use of University owned facilities always remain an option providing the reservation meets the other requirements of the policy. Travelers and arrangers can continue to make sleeping room reservations and meeting/event arrangements directly with the University owned facility.
For travel that requires a multi-night stay, the hotel may offer a different rate for one or more nights of stay. This may occur during high demand periods or over weekends. These rate differentials will be allowed with explanation providing that the total cost for all room nights averages to no more than the University’s nightly rate maximum for the location. Attach the agency E-Itinerary/Confirmation to show the rate variance over the dates of stay and the hotel receipt.
Travelers can reserve directly with the conference hotels. Travelers are strongly encouraged to search Concur for their conference hotel(s) as often there are rates available that are less than the conference rate. For UW sponsored conferences and meetings the organizer will provide reservation instructions if a group block has been arranged.
For individual reservations, both Concur and the UW agent team can be used for most international locations served by commercial hotels. For group reservations and/or when using non-commercial lodging establishments it is highly recommended that you review the UWSA Office of Procurement’s Master Contract with International Travel and Educational Program Providers or work with your institution’s procurement office to solicit bids under a separate procurement process.