GSA Finalizes Changes to Travel Reimbursement Policies


Map of Dillon, Mont. GSA said the change wouldn’t save much but could reduce administrative burdens. Image: Jonathan Park/

GSA has finalized changes to policies when agencies must determine how much to reimburse an employee who uses a privately owned vehicle on temporary duty when the agency has determined that another mode of travel was more advantageous to the government.

In that situation, an agency must perform a cost comparison, GSA noted in a January 18 Federal Register notice. If the mode of transportation the agency has authorized is less than the cost of traveling by POV, the employee only receives that limited amount, regardless of how much it costs to use a POV. If the constructive cost shows that the POV cost is less than the agency-selected mode, then the employee will receive the total POV-related costs.

In proposing the rules last year, the GSA said that agencies often mistakenly calculate those so-called “constructive costs” by only comparing the selected transportation mode with the POV mileage rates without also factoring other related costs.

GSA said it expects that specifying such considerations, which now are finalized, would produce only minor cost savings in reimbursements, but that agencies would spend less administrative time defending cost construction calculations that may have been unclear or confusing to the traveler.

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2023 Federal Employees Handbook


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