Short-Term Travel Timeline

Short-Term Travel lasts less than 96 hours and that takes place outside of New York, but within the U.S. In addition, short-term trips cannot include a flight. This would include such things as day trips out of the City. 

Trips lasting more than 96 hours, or ones that include a flight are considered Domestic Travel. Trips that take place outside of the U.S. (or its territories) are considered International Travel. These trips have different requirements and timelines. 

Preliminary Planning: Recommended a month before the trip

Short-Term Travel requires at least 48 hours of notice for it to be a Columbia-supported trip.

In order to access all the potential resources available to you, however, we strongly recommend that you start your planning much earlier. For trips that will involve an overnight stay, you should start your planning a month before the start of the trip. Many of the processes and travel payment options require several weeks to complete. The less time you give yourself to plan, the fewer options available to you.

One month before your trip … 

Meet with your adviser to discuss the following:

  • Purpose of Trip

What’s the reason for the trip? Who is going and why? Does the trip fall within your group’s mission?

  • Travel Plans

Where will you be traveling and for how long? How will you be getting there? Where will you stay (if necessary)? Are there safety concerns?

Your adviser will help you develop an individual trip timeline to keep you on track.

  • Trip Finances

Will you be using university funding (that includes student-group funds)? Does your group have the funds to cover the travel? What is the tentative trip budget? Approximately how much, in any, will each traveler be expected to pay out-of-pocket?

There are several options available to you to pay for travel. What methods make the most sense for your trip? What steps need to be taken to access those spending options?

After meeting with your adviser, you will need to submit any financial paperwork related to their upcoming trip, such as an FTF, travel advance forms, request to use a divisional credit card, etc. See the Financial Planning, Policies, and Procedures link for more details.

Two weeks before your trip …

  • Purpose of Trip

You and your adviser will review the purpose of the trip and discuss any adjustments.  

  • Travel Plans

You and your adviser will review your individual trip timeline and confirm items such as transportation, lodging and other trip details.  

You will finalize your trip roster with your adviser and instruct all trip participants to fill out and submit their Short-Term Travel form online. Students cannot travel on Columbia-supported trips unless they correctly fill out the appropriate travel form.

  • Trip Finances

You and your adviser will discuss the finances of the trip, including your trip budget and the chosen payment methods. The adviser will review processes and deadlines that you need to be aware of.

You will purchase as much of your travel needs at this time as possible.

 48 hours before your trip …

  • Travel Plans

You and your adviser will check in to see if there have been any changes to your travel plans. If there have been, you will discuss how best to manage the changes.   

You will confirm your roster and your adviser will check to make sure everyone has correctly filled out and submitted the Short-Term Travel form online. Remember, students cannot travel on Columbia-supported trips unless they correctly fill out the appropriate travel form.

  • Trip Finances

You and your adviser will discuss any last-minute issues with the payment methods and how to deal with them. 

You will purchase any remaining travel at this time. 

48 hours after your trip’s completion …

  • Debrief with Adviser

Your adviser will give you an opportunity to debrief the trip.  

  • Trip Finances

You will submit any relevant financial paperwork. See Financial Planning, Policies, and Procedures or talk with your adviser for more details.