Travel & Conference


If you would like to travel on behalf of Berkeley Lab, please fill out the Travel Authorization Request form.  A member of the BSBK travel team will respond to your request within 1-2 business days.  Failure to obtain travel approvals may result in non-reimbursement of travel expenses.  

BSBK Travel Team

The BSBK Travel Office is here to assist you with all travel related requests from start to finish. We can assist you in obtaining all required travel approvals, booking flights, answering travel related questions and concerns, and preparing and submitting expense reports upon your return. Our goal is to make the travel process as smooth as possible for all travelers. 

You can reach us at We look forward to working with each and everyone of you!

I need to cancel my travel plans. How can I do this?

Please reach out to the travel team at right away should you need to cancel travel plans as they will take all required steps with all appropriate offices.

 Can I take personal time while traveling?

If approved by your supervisor, yes, you can use any accrued PTO you may have. However, if you decide to fly in/out of an airport that is different from the airport you are required to fly into/out of for business purposes, your travel arranger will need to obtain a comparable flight, allowable quote (comp/allowable), from the Travel Office prior to your travel. Meaning, if the cost for your flight will be higher than what the lab would pay for you to fly in/out of the same airport, you will then be required to pay the difference at the time of booking your flight. The BSBK travel team can assist you with this.


(Virtual or In-Person)

If the trip is to a conference or event and is being paid for by DOE funds, the traveler must get approval from Conference Services to attend the event by filling out this form: Attend Event Request (AER).

What is a considered an Event?

Conference Services reviews and approves requests to attend events whether virtually or in-person. They ensure that approval and reporting is performed as required by the Department of Energy (DOE).

Events include conferences, meetings, retreats, seminars, symposiums, or certain activities that include travel and:

Individual events may qualify as conferences without meeting all of the key features listed above, but generally meet some of them.

Events, meetings, and traveling where you are doing work (as opposed to sharing information) are not conferences. For example, if a staff is traveling to another lab to conduct an experiment or decide on how a DOE project should be managed, that is considered “work” and not a conference.

Physical Travel 

(Domestic and Foreign)

Local Travel

What is Local travel?

Local travel is within 150 miles of Berkeley Lab, or the primary worksite, is completed in one calendar day, and does not include lodging, meals, or incidental expenses (M&IE). Local travel costs only include expenses for registration fees, mileage, tolls, and public transportation.

Domestic Travel

What is Domestic travel?

Domestic travel is (1) within the United States and its possessions, (2) travel from a foreign country to the United States, or (3) travel within a foreign country, originating in that same foreign country. Domestic travel costs include transportation costs (air, etc.), lodging, M&IE, and other appropriate travel costs, the details of which are outlined elsewhere in this policy.

Foreign Travel

What is Foreign travel?

Foreign travel is from the United States to a foreign country (including Canada and Mexico) and return, or travel between foreign countries. Foreign travel costs include transportation costs (air, etc.), lodging, M&IE, and other appropriate travel costs, the details of which are outlined elsewhere in this policy.

Click here to learn more about Foreign travel.


The Travel Arranger submits reimbursments only for approved Travel Authorizations. Failure to obtain travel approvals may result in non-reimbursement of travel expenses.

Click here to learn more about Reimbursements. 


1.) There is a conference/event I need to attend, what steps do I need to take to request travel approvals and when should I complete those?



2.) When can I purchase my flight and begin booking travel arrangements?

Once you receive confirmation that your Travel Authorization Request (TAR) has received Division approval, you can begin spending money and booking your travel arrangements. 


All domestic flights can be booked using the lab approved travel agency, Concur (you must set up your Concur profile first) and charged to the lab ghost card.


All foreign flights should be booked by calling CWT at (888) 243-1125 and speaking with an agent. In doing so, CWT can charge the lab ghost card for the cost of your foreign flight. If you choose to book your foreign flight using Concur (you must set up your Concur profile first), you must abide by the Fly America Act. If not, your flight will be canceled by the lab.

For Foreign travel, you must purchase your flight and provide a copy of your itinerary to Debbie Warner and your travel arranger no later than 30 days prior to your departure date. Providing this information at least 45 days prior to your departure date is strongly preferred.

3.) How can I travel and spend as little out of pocket as possible?

Berkeley Lab offers a *US Bank Visa Corporate Travel Charge Card To employees who travel at least once per year on behalf of Berkeley Lab. Cards are issued at no cost to you and with no individual credit check. Once you complete the application form, the application must be approved by your supervisor and faxed to the Travel Office at (510) 486-6888.

*Charge Card Application, Travel Charge Card Information.

An advantage of obtaining the Corporate Travel Charge Card is that your reimbursement can go directly from your TREX Expense Report to your US Bank account as an electronic transfer.

What MAY you charge on your Corporate Travel Charge Card?

The Corporate Travel Charge Card is to be used exclusively for Berkeley Lab business expenses associated with official travel such as hotels, car rentals, meals, miscellaneous expenses, and registration fees in accordance with, and as allowed by, Contract 31 and Berkeley Lab policy. Your card can only be used for your own Lab business travel expenses.

What MAY you NOT charge on the Corporate Travel Charge Card?

Personal charges, unrelated to Berkeley Lab business purposes, are not to be charged to the Corporate Travel Charge Card. Any nonbusiness-related charges you incur are not reimbursable. You may not charge any expenses on your card for anyone other than yourself.

Who makes the payments?

Corporate Travel Charge Cards are issued directly to you, the cardholder, and not to Berkeley Lab. Corporate Travel Charge Card payments are your own responsibility. Delinquencies and/or misuse may result in the cancellation of the travel card and/or other corrective action, up to and including termination. Any interest and/or late fees incurred for delinquent payments are your responsibility and, therefore, are non reimbursable.

Cancellation of Corporate Travel Charge Card

The Corporate Travel Charge Card may be canceled at the discretion of Berkeley Lab or the issuing bank, and must be relinquished upon termination of employment.

4.) Looking for more FAQ's?

Click here for Events (virtual or in person) FAQ's.

Click here for Local Travel FAQ's.

Click here for Domestic Travel FAQ's.

Click here for Foreign Travel FAQ's.

Click here for Reimbursement FAQ's.

5.) Who can I contact with any travel related questions?

Please reach out to your travel arranger at or click here for more information on how to Contact Us.