Meals and Incidental Expenses (M&IE)


  1. M&IE Rate
    1. The M&IE allowance is the daily rate allocated to the traveler to cover the cost of meals and incidental expenses.
    2. M&IE reimbursement rates for travel shall be the rate authorized for payment by the federal government in the locality in which the traveler spends the night. If the location is not listed on the federal list, the traveler must use the rate for “other” as the amount for the M&IE claims.
    3. For same-day travel greater than 12 hours, the per diem rate for the destination location shall be used. An M&IE allowance will not be paid when travel status is less than 12 hours.
    4. The M&IE allowance is 75 percent of the meals rate for the first day based on government listed rate for the city where traveler lodges, and 75 percent of meals rate for the last day, based on the government listed rate for the last city traveler lodged.
    5. When a trip includes more than one university business stop and the cities involved have different per diem rates, the per diem rate for each calendar day (beginning at 12:01 a.m.) is determined by the location where the lodging is obtained for that night.
    6. It is the traveler’s responsibility to accurately report when a meal is provided (e.g., hotel breakfast, conference lunch) if the food/timing is sufficient to serve as a meal. The specific Alaska locations the university president has set for the M&IE rate will be set in the travel system, including the value of breakfast, lunch and dinner. Other locations will follow federal guidance.
    7. The signature of the traveler certifies the facts on the expense report and is sufficient to process the claim for payment. The M&IE deduction breakdown will be calculated automatically by the travel system and is available on the university travel website.
    8. Representational expenses incurred while on travel status are reimbursable via the travel system. A proportional reduction in the traveler’s meal allowance is included on the expense report.
    9. M&IE allowances shall not exceed the maximum M&IE rate authorized to be paid for the place of final destination, regardless of start of transit time, and cannot exceed a 24 hour day, regardless of time zones or elapsed transit time.
    10. Incidental expenses include fees, gratuities and tips for services of cleaning staff, wait staff, baggage handlers, baggage carts, etc. Current rates are available from the university travel website.
    11. Reimbursements at the lower of actual cost or per diem for meals and incidental expenses may be required only if the traveler is informed of the requirement in advance of the travel.
    12. Per diem or reimbursement allowances may be paid for periods of interruption or extension of travel incurred for the benefit of the university or circumstances beyond the control of the traveler.
    13. The per diem rate shall be the same for Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau and their surrounding communities within a 50 mile radius. This rate is set by the university president and will be posted on the university travel website. Alaska locations specifically identified in the federal per diem tables, other than Anchorage, Fairbanks and Juneau and their surrounding communities, use the allowable federal per diem rate for that location.
  2. Long-term M&IE Rate
    1. When expected to be in travel status in a single location for more than 30 days, the long-term per diem rate applies. The long-term per diem rate is calculated at 70 percent of the short-term per diem rate and applies on the 31st day forward. When staying more than 30 days a traveler can find less expensive accommodations than regular hotel rates, cook their own meals and have limited incidental costs. 
    2. A long‐term per diem allowance equal to 70 percent of the short‐term meal and incidental  allowance rounded up to the nearest dollar (or other rate as approved by the Travel  Administrator) shall be utilized when the circumstances of travel are such that the traveler can reasonably be expected to incur expenses comparable to those arising from the use of  establishments catering to the longer‐term visitor.  
  3. Meals for Group Travel
    1. One person is responsible for the meals and incidentals for a group.
    2. Reimbursement to the responsible person will be at actual cost or at an authorized M&IE rate.
    3. Supporting documentation such as a statement from group members is required.
    4. When group members are advanced cash by the responsible person in order to pay for their own meals, individual receipts are not required; however, the responsible person is required to submit a list of names identifying the amount provided to each group member and individually signed by each member as backup documentation for such cash disbursements.
  4. Lodging
    1. Lodging expense is the cost incurred for an overnight stay while in travel status.
    2. Reimbursement of lodging expenses is at actual cost.
    3. The individual with expenditure authority has the responsibility to determine the most appropriate and cost-effective rates considering federal lodging allowances and the business need.
    4. Reimbursement of actual costs for lodging in excess of 1.5 times the federal lodging allowance rate requires a business substantiation.
  5. Non-Commercial Lodging Allowance Rate
    1. A non-commercial allowance equal to 15 percent of the short-term federal lodging allowance rounded up to the nearest dollar may be utilized when the circumstances of travel are such that the traveler can reasonably be expected to incur expenses comparable to those arising from the use of non-commercial subsistence facilities such as field camping, state camps, university facilities, staying with friends or relatives, or other accommodations, and the rate reasonably approximates the cost of obtaining the service. Non-commercial lodging can be reimbursed at the actual cost incurred when a receipt is provided.
  6. Travel Delays Beyond Traveler's Control
    1. If an airline or other carrier assumes the cost of lodging or meals due to over-flying a destination or other travel delays beyond the control of the traveler, the traveler may be reimbursed for necessary costs over and above those paid by the airline, provided the per diem allowances or expense reimbursements are adjusted accordingly. 
M&IE (Per Diem Allowance)

The applicable M&IE rate is determined by where the traveler is lodging. The last day M&IE rate is the traveler's last business location.

When time in travel status is: Your allowance is:
Less than 12 hours M&IE not allowed
More than 12 hours but less than 24 hours 75% of the applicable M&IE rate for each day traveler is in travel status.
More than 24 hours
Day of departure 75% of applicable M&IE rate
Full days in business location 100% of applicable M&IE rate
31st day and longer in one location 70% of applicable M&IE rate
The last day of travel 75% of applicable M&IE rate

M and I Scenario