Travel Credit Card Procedure


This procedure describes how to obtain and use a Queen’s Travel Credit Card (TCard) for travel related expenses while travelling on university business.


“acQuire” Queen’s University’s cloud-based e-procurement software application.

“Cardholder” a university employee or affiliate organization whose finances are governed by Queen’s, to whom a credit card has been issued to pursuant to this policy.  All credit cards issued must be in a person’s name and not a department name to ensure insurance and fraud coverage.

“Card Provider” is the financial institution administering the credit card program and electronic accounts payment (EAP) to Queen’s University. 

“CentreSuite” provides the university a tool to manage the credit card program online (entering of applications, changes to merchant codes, etc.).  Additionally, it allows Cardholders to manage their card use and keep track of expenses.  Online software is provided through Scotiabank and Total System Services (TSYS).

“Employee Reimbursement System” (“ERS”) is the university’s system for all employee processing of any expense reimbursements, including both travel and non-travel.

“Travel Credit Card” (“TCard”) is an organizational credit card that is intended to be used for the purpose of traveling on university business only.  Cards are issued either for individual use or departmental use.



a. Applying

The applicant is required to read the Travel Credit Card (TCard) Policy and adhere to all TCard policies and procedures.  To apply, employees are to complete the applicable Application Form in acQuire:

  • Travel Credit Card: Departmental; or
  • Travel Credit Card: Individual

Each Applicant and the Department Head or designate (departmental individual who has authority to sign on the department account(s)) must read and sign-off on the Acknowledgements as outlined in the acQuire form.  Note, if the application is for a Department Head or the designate, the application must be approved by the applicant’s one up approver – in no circumstance can an applicant approve their own application. The Acknowledgements certify that the Applicant and the Department Head or designate agree to abide by the policy and procedure as set out and understand that any violations may result in the cancellation for suspension of the TCard.

As per the TCard Policy, there is a maximum single transaction limit and a maximum monthly card limit as well.  SPS reserves the right to assign lower limits for certain Cardholders or cancel cards for improper use.  See the TCard Policy for further details.

TCards are assigned to one Cardholder only (per the Cardholders name listed on the TCard) and cannot be assigned to multiple users.  TCards must not be loaned to any other individual.  The Cardholder is the only person authorized to use the assigned TCard and bears sole responsibility for all transactions.

All university approved credit cards (both PCards and TCards) are issued against Queen’s credit and not the cardholder’s personal credit.

b. Mandatory Training

Prior to a Cardholder obtaining the physical TCard for use, all Cardholders will be required to attend a mandatory training session and pass a quiz (obtaining a minimum of 80% on the test) to demonstrate their understanding of proper use of the card.

Available training opportunities (either in person or online) will be posted to the SPS website.

c. Receiving your TCard

All newly issued TCards are mailed directly from the Card Provider to Strategic Procurement Services (SPS) for establishment in the Card Provider’s settlement system.  The Cardholder will be notified via email once this establishment is finalized and all necessary steps have been completed (required training and successfully passing quiz).  Cards can then be collected from the Strategic Procurement Services, by appointment and must be picked up by the Cardholder, in-person.

The standard application process time is approximately three weeks from the approval of the application to receipt of the card.

d. Activating and Registering your TCard

After receiving a TCard and signing a Queen’s Cardholder Agreement (either P0003B for Department TCard or P0003C for Individual TCard), which states how the card is to be used and reconciled, Cardholders are to follow the card activation instructions found in the envelope containing their card.

Please contact the Card Provider’s Customer Service team or Strategic Procurement Services with any questions.

e. Renewal Cards

Expiry dates on cards are based on the end of the month.  All renewal cards are automatically sent to SPS, approximately two to four weeks prior to the expiration date of the card.  Once renewal cards are received, Cardholders will be contacted via email for scheduled distribution dates.  Renewal cards which are not collected by the cardholder within fifteen days of the distribution event, will be securely destroyed.  Cardholders would then have to reapply for a new card and the approval process would recommence.

Queen’s Cardholder Agreement (either P0003B for Department TCard or P0003C for Individual TCard) will be required to be resigned with any renewal cards obtained.

f. Replacement Cards

For more information on what to do if a TCard has been lost or stolen, please see the 'Lost/Stolen/Damaged Cards' section of the Troubleshooting a TCard (Section 8 of this procedure document).


It is important to understand that the proper use of a Queen's TCard is more than conducting transactions in a safe, ethical, and professional manner.  There are two activities associated with the use of the credit card.  One is using the card for travel related expenses, the second is ensuring that the bank and university financial information is correct, along with the Policy and Procedures being followed appropriately. 

a. Using Your Card

Departmental TCard

The Departmental TCard may be used for the coordination of travel within a department – i.e. group or employees who travel infrequently.  Examples of use of the Departmental TCard are:

  • Rental cars - Collision Damage and Waiver (CDW) insurance coverage included
  • Train tickets
  • Securing a hotel room – note, this is simply to hold a reservation, cannot be used to pay for hotel room at time of check-in

Departmental TCards are not for individual use including incidental expenses (e.g. gas, meals, etc.).  Departmental TCards are never to be loaned to another traveler in any circumstance.

Individual TCard

The Individual TCard is intended for Queen’s employees who travel on university business frequently (more than twice per calendar year).  All travel expenses incurred during a person’s business travel can be charged to the card however if an individual is claiming a meal per diem, meal expenses should not be charged to the card.

Individual cards are to be used only by the person issued the credit card (i.e. cardholder name listed on card).  Under no circumstance should an individual card be used to pay for another employee’s travel related expenses.  The exception to this is, expenses incurred under the university’s Hospitality Policy.

Use of all TCards

Receipts must be obtained and adhere to the Queen’s Travel and Expense Reimbursement Policy.  Receipts will be required for either reconciling through CentreSuite (Departmental TCard requirement) or for expense reimbursement through the Employee Reimbursement System (ERS) (Individual TCard requirement).

Credit card numbers should only be given over the phone or through a secure internet site – do not fax your number to any company, allow a retailer to hold your card number on file or store your number online.  The Cardholder is responsible for following up with the retailer to resolve any problems, discrepancies or concerns with expenses charged to their TCard.

For reconciling of the Departmental TCard, file and store your receipts, along with approved statements and any other supporting documentation.  This documentation may be reviewed by the SPS, Financial Services, Internal Audit Services, research granting agencies, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) or other regulatory bodies for audit purposes at any time.  Receipts and records for the Departmental TCard must be kept on file for at least seven years before being destroyed or longer if specifically requested by a research funding agency.  Note:  please ensure documentation is accessible to at least one other person in your department during a temporary leave of absence from the University (e.g., sabbatical, sick leave, maternity leave, etc.).

For expense claims on the Individual TCard, these expenses should be submitted and accounted for on a timely basis through the Expense Reimbursement System (ERS) in accordance with the instructions outlined in the Queen’s Travel and Expense Reimbursement Policy.  An acceptable receipt from a retailer is outlined in the Queen’s Travel and Expense Reimbursement Policy

b. Restricted Commodities

The intent of the TCard is it is not to be used for items that should be purchased on a Procurement Credit Card (PCard), however if goods need to be purchased for use during business travel, the TCard can be used.

If a Cardholder purchases a restricted commodity, they will be required to pay the TCard transaction for the full cost immediately.  If you purchase an item that is considered a restricted commodity, please contact the Manager, Business Services & Logistics to facilitate this payment requirement.

Restricted commodities include the following however are not limited to:

  • Alcohol
  • Personal purchases - for purposes of this policy, personal purchases are defined as a incurred expenditures that are not related to an individual’s employment with the university and is for the consumption of themselves; for example, employee’s household expenses charged to this card are not permitted
  • Departmental food purchases from restaurants or fast food restaurants
  • Entertainment tickets for theatres, cinemas, theme parks and events

Obtaining a cash advance through an ATM or financial institution is not permitted on the TCard and is blocked by Card Provider.

If you have any questions regarding these restrictions, or the appropriate use of the TCard, please contact Strategic Procurement Services.


If you have been issued a Queen's TCard, your responsibilities include ensuring that monthly reconciliations or reimbursement claims are completed on time, either by the cardholder or a designated individual.  All transactions must be reviewed and settled monthly as outlined in the Queen’s How to Claim an Expense Reimbursement - Procedure.

How you reconcile or expense your travel claims is dependent upon the TCard type you have:

  • Departmental TCards are reconciled through the Card Provider’s settlement system – CentreSuite (currently)
  • Individual TCards are to be expensed through the ERS

a. Reconciling your Departmental TCard

Transactions are posted on the Credit Card’s website settlement system usually within two to three business days.

While individual Cardholders commonly reconcile their own TCard, departments and faculties are encouraged to designate one individual in their department to maintain records and review transactions monthly on the credit card provider’s website for all cards in that cost center.

Failure to reconcile monthly will result in the card being cancelled.

Copies of the approved reconciliations/statements must be kept on file with original copies of receipts attached.  As previously noted, these must be kept for a minimum of seven years (longer terms may be required for research projects, please check with Financial Services).

With the authority to purchase comes the responsibility for maintaining adequate documentation of the transaction.  It is the responsibility of each unit to develop a process and assign responsibility for document retention in accordance with Queen's University's. Please refer to the Records Management Policy.

If the default "Chart of Accounts" number has been changed during the reconciliation process and there are any errors in the input, SPS will re-key the entry back to the default "Chart of Account" numbers.

Once the transaction is loaded onto the settlement system, authorized users will need to reconcile each transaction by the reconciliation dates. Refer to Reconciliation of Credit Cards available on the SPS website for assistance.  When all transactions for a given cycle date have been reviewed, they require approval by the Supervisor and a review based on their process, by the General Accounting team within the allotted reconciliation timeframe.  Approvals are obtained through the automated workflow in CentreSuite.

All original corresponding receipts for Departmental TCard for the current month are to be loaded in CentreSuite.

Failure to reconcile could result in incorrect GL accounts being charged, as well as additional journal entries being required.  Journal entry corrections are the responsibility of the Cardholder.   Please refer any questions regarding access to the TCard settlement system (password problems) or reconciling the card to Strategic Procurement Services.

A backup reviewer needs to be designated in the case where the reviewer will be absent during the month end reconciliation cycle process.  Cardholders must forward all supporting documentation, including credits to the TCard, to the person in your department who has been assigned responsibility for document retention in a timely manner.  All transactions will be posted regardless of whether they have been marked as reviewed.  Failure to consistently reconcile TCards could result in cards being cancelled.

b. Reconciling your Individual TCard

Transactions are available in the ERS usually within two to three business days.  Transaction data is fed daily overnight from the Scotiabank system to the ERS for ease of entry of expense claims.  Any credits on the card will also be sent to the ERS, and should be accounted for through an expense claim, the same way a normal transaction would be accounted for.

Individual TCardholders will receive a monthly statement emailed to their Queen’s email account within three business days of the statement close.

As Individual TCards are required to be processed through the ERS, instructions on How to Claim an Expense Reimbursement – Procedure, should be followed.

Expense claims for travel should be grouped by trip, and therefore TCard expenses may be claimed on the same claim as expenses not on the TCard (such as per diems).  Once the claim is submitted, approved, and processed, the expense amounts from the TCard will be sent to the Card Provider, and payment applied against the TCard.

Cardholders may submit more than one claim per trip in the ERS if transactions were charged for advanced travel expenses (i.e. airfare) to ensure that payments are made on time to the TCard.

When submitting a claim for reimbursement in the ERS and the Cardholder has both transactions to be paid to the Credit Card Provider and the employee, the ERS is configured to create two vouchers.  Approved transactions charged to the TCard will be paid directly to the Credit Card Provider and expenses payable to the employee, will be paid directly to employee.

c. Missing Receipts

While all efforts should be made to acquire and retain original receipts, if documentation for a purchase is missing or receipts are lost or misplaced, the Cardholder may contact the supplier and obtain a duplicate receipt/invoice.

d. Late Payment Fees & Overdue Balances

Cardholders are to adhere to guidelines on reconciling of charges to either Departmental TCards or Individual TCards.  For Cardholders of the Individual TCard, failure to reconcile charges on the TCard prior to statement due dates will result in late payment fees.  Late payment fees are considered a personal expense and are not reimbursable by the university.

Failure to settle your card balance, either filing an expense report or paying personal and late payment charges, may result in your card being suspended or cancel.  If card is suspended or cancelled due to an overdue balance by the cardholder, the university will arrange with the employee and/or the department, an agreement for repayment on a case by case basis.  Agreements may include one of the following options:

  • Payment schedule with the cardholder making payments directly to the credit card provider;
  • Department paying the overdue balance on the employee’s behalf and arranging an agreement directly with the employee;
  • Agreement with the employee to deduct the overdue balance directly from their employment compensation based on a one-time deduction arrangement; or
  • Another mutually beneficial arrangement reached in cooperation with the employee, department, and university.

e. Departmental TCard Managerial Oversight

Once a Departmental TCard has been reconciled, it is necessary for documentary and audit purposes for the Supervisor to sign off on the monthly cardholder activity statement to ensure managerial oversight and adherence to the University TCard Policy.

Reconciled Departmental TCards statements are to be printed off with all receipts attached and kept on file as per retention policies.

If Departmental TCards are electronic reconciled through CentreSuite, an electronic copy of the statement along with the electronic receipts are to be saved on a departmental shared folder.

Either recordkeeping option must be made available whenever requested by SPS, Financial Services, Internal Audit or other governing bodies that would require review of these documents.


The issuing of a Queen's TCard represents Queen's trust in you as a responsible employee who will safeguard and protect university assets.  As a Cardholder, you assume the responsibility for the protection and proper use of the TCard.  This includes both the proper and ethical use of the card as well as the regular reconciling of the associated account. (For more information, see the Reconciling Accounts Section 3).

TCards and card numbers must be safeguarded against use by unauthorized individuals within or outside the university.

The following situations are examples of misuse of the TCard:

Personal Misuse:

  • Purchases made for the sole benefit of the employee
  • Use of a TCard by a suspended or terminated employee

Administrative Misuse:

  • Lack of proper and timely reconciliation of Departmental Cardholder in CentreSuite
  • Lack of proper and timely submission of travel and reimbursement claims by the Cardholder in the ERS
  • Lack of funds in your departmental or research budget accounts
  • Use of the TCard to purchase items or services that should be charged to a PCard and are not travel related expenses

The TCardholder’s Departmental Head or Supervisor has the responsibility to report instances of misuse.  Supervisors have the responsibility to suspend or terminate card privileges in instances of misuse and report them to Strategic Procurement Services.

As the Supervisor approving the issuance of the card to the Cardholder, the Supervisor is responsible for verifying proper use and ensuring either appropriate monthly reconciliation of the departmental card through the Card Provider’s settlement system or submission of expense reimbursement claims by the cardholder or other designated in the ERS.

Improper use of the card may also result in disciplinary action and SPS may cancel TCards for non-adherence to the TCard Policy and Procedures, at any time.

It is the responsibility of the Department Head and the Cardholder to ensure that Strategic Procurement Services is notified no less than two weeks prior to the Cardholder leaving the University, upon termination of employment, maternity or parental leave, or any other applicable circumstances.


No financial institution, bank, credit card provider, or otherwise, will contact their customers via email to request account information.  Often these emails claim that accounts have been declared suspended or on hold, and request that the card information be resubmitted or updated to reactivate the account.

If there is any concern about a card or card number, financial institutions will contact the cardholder by phone.   If you are concerned about the legitimacy of the call, hang up and call the credit card company yourself.

Any email, regardless of how professional or legitimate it may appear (i.e. professional wording, logos, or graphics), that requests your account information is fraudulent and should be forwarded to and the email deleted.  These emails are referred to as "phishing" emails.

If you are at all in doubt as to the legitimacy of an email, please contact either Strategic Procurement Services or call the phone number for Customer Service on the back of the TCard in order to speak with a Credit Card Customer Service Representative.

For more information on phishing emails or other concerns regarding potential fraudulent activities, visit VISA's Common Frauds information page.


To ensure the continued success of the TCard program and to meet the audit requirements of both Queen's University and various government agencies, Internal Audit Services, Financial Services and SPS will conduct periodic audits to verify that items expensed on the credit card are in support of university business travel and that the correct policies and/or procedures have been followed.

All credit card transactions will be subject to regular auditing activities by SPS using various methods, i.e. electronically and audit sampling.  Cardholders will be selected at random.

For convenience and in the interest of saving time, Departmental Travel Cardholders are reminded to have the following ready for the audit:

  • All receipts and invoices from the past seven years including those that belonged to employees who have left the University
  • All monthly reconciliation activity statements for the past seven years
  • These two items should be filed together for easy retrieval

Note:  Please ensure documentation is accessible to at least one other person in your department during a temporary leave of absence from the University (e.g., sabbatical, sick leave, maternity leave, etc.).

Adequate documentation for the Departmental TCard must be maintained to record the transaction.  Cardholders must forward all supporting documentation (including credits to the TCard) to the person in their department who has been assigned responsibility for document retention.  These receipts assist in the verification of the online transaction and proper allocation of the purchase.  Failure to meet audit standards may result in the loss of TCard privileges.


a. Cancelling a TCard

It is the responsibility of the Cardholder to return the physical card to the attention of Strategic Procurement Services no less than two weeks prior to leaving the university upon resignation of employment or retirement, or any other applicable circumstances.

Department Heads are responsible for ensuring that cards are cancelled when an employee leaves their position in that department for which the card was issued, and that all outstanding or relevant receipts have been collected.  The account attached to the card must be reconciled (Departmental through CentreSuite or Individual through the ERS) to facilitate closing the account attached to the card.  A backup person must be designated to reconcile the card if the cardholder is unable to.

Please ensure that SPS is informed of the Cardholders name, the account to which the card is attached, and only the last four numbers on the card.  It is helpful to specify if the Cardholder has transferred between units at the university or left Queen's entirely.

To cancel a Queen's TCard, use the acQuire form “Credit Card Change Request: All Cards”.  The physical plastic must be cut in half widthwise, sealed in an envelope and sent to:

Credit Card Program, Strategic Procurement Services

3rd Floor, Rideau Building, Queen's University

207 Stuart Street, Kingston, ON   K7K 3N6

b. Extended Leave

It is the responsibility of the Department Head and the Cardholder to ensure SPS is notified no less than two weeks prior to the cardholder leaving the university upon termination of employment, maternity or parental leave, or any other applicable circumstances where leave from the university is greater than one month in length. The card will either be temporarily suspended (for a leave of absence) or be cancelled (in situation of termination from the university) and the individual can apply for a new card upon their return to Queen's University.


a. Lost/Stolen/Damaged Cards

If a Queen's TCard is lost or stolen, Cardholders are required to immediately notify the Business Services & Logistics unit in SPS and the Card Provider at the number provided by SPS. If a card is damaged beyond use, contact the Card Provider who will forward a new card to SPS for the Cardholder to pick up.

If a replacement card is required for a name change or other reason, the acQuire “Credit Card Change Request: All Cards” form must be completed and approved by the various approval levels.

b. Disputing a Transaction

A Cardholder may dispute a charge that appears on their monthly credit card statement.  The Cardholder is responsible for following up with a supplier for any erroneous charges or disputed items.  Disputed charges can result from fraud or misuse, altered charges, incorrect amounts, sales tax charges, duplicate charges, credits not processed, etc.

The Cardholder should contact the retailer first to resolve any outstanding issues.  Most issues can be resolved in this way.  If successful, make sure to get a written confirmation of the credit from the supplier.  If unsuccessful, contact the Credit Card’s Customer Service number on the back of the card to discuss further action.

c. Repayment of charges on a TCard

If there are charges on an Individual TCard that are the personal responsibility of the Cardholder, payments should be made through the Cardholder’s personal bank account using the online bill payment option by their financial institution.  If you have questions on how to set Credit Card Provider as a payee in your online banking system, please contact your banking institution.


Questions should be directed either to the Credit Card’s Customer Service using the phone number found on the back of the credit card or by accessing the provider’s online resources.  Any other questions such as account information, spending limits etc., should be directed to Strategic Procurement Services.

Date Approved December 15, 2020
Approval Authority SLT
Date of Commencement December 15, 2020
Amendment Dates  
Date for Next Review December 2025
Related Policies, Procedures and Guidelines

Queen's Travel Credit Card Policy

Queen's Travel and Expense Reimbursement Policy

Queen's How to Claim an Expense Reimbursement Policy