Nonexempt Travel Policy

August 2016

The purpose of this policy is to state the pay rules that apply to nonexempt employees when traveling on PLU business.

Employees in positions classified as nonexempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act are eligible for compensation for the time they spend traveling. The compensation an employee receives depends on the kind of travel and whether the travel time takes place within normal work hours.

Normal Work Hours Defined
“Normal work hours” are determined by position and will vary across campus. Normal work hours are recorded on monthly time sheets. The definition applies to normal workdays (Monday through Friday) and to weekends (Saturday and Sunday).

Travel Time Defined
“Travel time” is defined as including the time the employee arrives at the airport to the time the employee reaches his or her destination. If an employee is traveling to a location, then the destination is either the hotel or the worksite (if the employee travels directly from the airport to work). If the employee is returning home from a location, the destination is the airport of final arrival.

Travel between home and work or between the hotel and worksite is considered normal commuting time and is not eligible for compensation.

If an employee requests a specific travel itinerary or mode of transportation that is different from the one authorized by PLU, only the estimated travel time associated with the itinerary and mode of transportation that has been authorized will be eligible for compensation.

Travel Time Within Normal Work Hours
Any portion of authorized travel time that takes place within normal work hours on any day of the week, including Saturday and Sunday, is treated as work hours. Travel time within normal work hours will be paid at the employee’s regular hourly rate and will be factored into overtime calculations.

When an employee travels between two or more time zones, the time zone associated with the point of departure should be used to determine whether the travel falls within normal work hours.

Travel Time Outside of Normal Work Hours
Compensation for travel outside normal work hours depends on whether the travel time takes place on a single day of travel or is overnight/multiday travel.

One Day Travel: When a nonexempt employee is required to travel as a passenger in an automobile, plane or any other mode of transportation outside of normal work hours for a one day assignment away from the normal work site, he or she will be compensated for that portion of travel time that takes place outside of normal work hours.

Overnight or Multiday Travel: When a nonexempt employee is required to travel as a passenger in an automobile, plane or any other mode of transportation outside of normal work hours for an overnight or multiday day assignment away from the normal work site, he or she will not be compensated for that portion of travel time that takes place outside of normal work hours.

If one engages in work (for example work related phone calls or emails) for PLU while a passenger outside normal work hours, this is considered work and would be paid time.

When an employee travels between two or more time zones, the time zone associated with the point of departure should be used to determine whether the travel falls outside of normal work hours.

Travel Time as the Driver of an Automobile
All authorized travel time spent driving an automobile (as the driver, not as a passenger) is treated as work hours, regardless of whether the travel takes place within normal work hours or outside normal work hours. An employee will receive his or her regular hourly rate for all travel time spent as the driver of an automobile, and this time will be factored into overtime calculations.

Travel as a passenger in an automobile is not automatically treated as work hours. Travel as a passenger in an automobile is treated the same as all other forms of travel, and compensation depends on whether the travel time takes place within normal work hours and if the travel is one day or overnight/multiday travel.

If an employee drives a car as a matter of personal preference when an authorized flight or other travel mode is available, and the travel time by car would exceed that of the authorized mode, only the estimated travel time associated with the authorized mode will be eligible for compensation.

Calculating and Reporting Travel Time
Employees are responsible for accurately tracking, calculating and reporting travel time on their timesheets in accordance with this policy.

Meal periods should be deducted from all travel time.

If an employee requests a specific travel itinerary or mode that is different from the one authorized, only the estimated travel time associated with the authorized schedule, route and mode of transportation should be reported on the timesheet.

Last Modified: August 26, 2016 at 8:56 pm