Last week, I introduced you to Stacy
and her “End of the month” troubles as she attempted to reconcile her corporate
travel account. If you missed Part 1 of
this installment, you’ll want to go back and read it. There are some good tips in there for
managing your corporate and personal credit cards while on travel, and I have
some more here:
4. Receipts. Keep them.
Keep them all. I keep business
sized envelopes in my travel bag and I label them, “CITY – DATE,” and I keep
all of the receipts I gather in that envelope until I get home and I do my
expense report. The last receipt I put
in is always the receipt for airport parking that I get when I arrive
home. “Purchase travel items with the
travel card, and put the travel receipt in the envelope;” That’s my
mantra. I keep my envelopes for a year
in a file cabinet at home for tax purposes and in case I get audited by the
travel trolls in our corporate auditing dept. That happened to me one time, I
gave them the envelopes for the trips they questioned and I never heard from
5. When to use cash. These days, you can use your corporate travel
card to buy almost anything, easily.
From groceries to a cup of coffee at the ‘Bucks; a simple swipe of the
card produces a receipt and you’re good to go.
There are exceptions to the rule.
Taxicabs are notorious for waiting weeks and weeks to submit your credit
voucher to your credit card company.
You’ll be reimbursed and you’ll pay your bill and you’ll end up with a
credit for awhile because the taxi company is late in billing your
creditor. For that reason, I pay cash
for taxis. It is also for that reason
that I’ll book a car service or some other means of transportation than a
cab. When I use cash for incidentals
like a street vendor or a cab ride, I use my own cash, keep the receipt, and
mark the receipt as “cash.” When I get
reimbursed, I transfer the cash amount to my personal account and pay the rest
to the credit card company.
6. Keep the customer service telephone
numbers stored in your mobile phone as “contacts.” If your card is lost or stolen while you’re
on travel (trust me, it’s only a matter of time), you’ll have the number handy
to call and cancel the card. The phone
number also comes in handy when you’re about to make a purchase that’s out of
the ordinary. Let’s say you normally buy
domestic travel tickets every two weeks when suddenly, your boss tells you that
you’ll need to go to
ordinary” category and will probably get flagged as a possible “theft purchase”
by your creditor. Call them before you
buy the ticket and tell them, “I’m going to
the best sushi on the planet is to learn that your credit card has been frozen!
Hopefully, these tips will help make
your travel life a bit more pleasurable.
I spend about 20 minutes per week doing expenses and it drives Stacy
crazy. She simply can’t understand why
she needs a whole work day at the end of each month to figure it out. Stacy’s boss doesn’t understand it either…
EXTRA: If you have questions for Ken regarding
business travel, hotels, airplanes, etc, please send an
email! Your questions will be recorded and Ken will answer the
best ones in his Ask the
Expert podcast show.