The words "airport" and "flying" are usually enough to bring about visions of long lines, shuffling luggage, rushing to gates, and being herded into lines and down narrow airplane aisles. One of the biggest keys of controlling the stress of flying is Plan Ahead! Be prepared for things from minor inconveniences to major disruptions (weather, delays, lost luggage). There are many books on business travel that deal with this type of preparation, and they are excellent investments.

    Here are some basic points for booking and ticketing flights.

  1. All airfares for official University travel without regard to source of funds must be purchased using a State of Texas corporate travel account through either (1) a state issued credit card or (2) use of a central bill account through the contracted travel agency, Corporate Travel Planners, Inc. (CTPI).
  2. Reservations for air travel may be made either (1) with the contract travel agency or (2) directly with an airline. If reservations are made with the airline, the traveler must (1) tell the airline reservationist that the tickets will be written by a travel agency and (2) call CTPI and request that they issue the ticket.
  3. Although travelers may find less expensive airfares as a result of airfare wars/promotions or through airlines’ standard discount programs, such fares may have rigid advance purchase requirements and/or severe penalties for changes or cancellations. For destinations in which there is a state contract, such airfares can be very helpful to our travelers.
  4. Resist the Siren's Call of paper tickets. Although having the tickets in hand is tempting, the reality is replacing lost tickets is very expensive. Electronic ticketing not only keeps the tickets safe in the airline system, they are easily and quickly reissued. If the travel agency or airline needs information from the ticket, it is easily accessible in the reservation system. Also, once the reservation is ticketed, there are no paper tickets to wait for. You are ready to fly.
  5. Taking personal side trips will complicate the reimbursement process. If the traveler is going to combine a personal trip (or a trip not paid for by UTHSCSA), contact accounting for assistance in figuring the reimbursable amount. Also, consult the HOP for more insight.
  6. If you have a car or hotel reservation to make, make all of them at the same time as you are making the flight reservation to help prevent incorrect dates or times from being booked.
  7. If Corporate Travel is to charge to UPT, be sure to have the travel requisition sent to the travel agency. See the Travel page for the basic process for employee travel. Contact Travel Services if the travel requisition has been approved but was not sent to the travel agency.