HBP Part 9.1.6. Use of Credit Cards for Official University Business

Date published: Feb. 20, 2005
Last revised: August 16, 2021
Issued by: Accounts Payable


A. Authorized Credit Cards

The following are authorized credit cards for use by designated University personnel to conduct official university business:

1. Official Occasions and Other Consumable and Non-consumable Items

For items related to official occasions and other consumable and non-consumable items, the authorized credit card is the Procard, administered by the Purchasing Office.

Procurement Card (Procard) Program

Purchasing Office

2. Travel

Authorized credit cards for travel are:

  • Citibank Individual Liability Travel Card—Used by employees for business travel expenses while in travel status. This card can also be used by employees to pay for entertainment expenses. This is an individual liability card paid directly to Citibank by the employee, and the employee is reimbursed by the University.
  • Citibank Hotel Central Billed Card—Used by departments that have three or more conferences/meetings a year. Can be used for the hotel charges of meeting space, catering, audio visual equipment, etc.
  • Citibank Central Billed Airfare Card—Used by contracted travel agencies only for issuance of centrally billed airfare.
  • Citibank Student Group Travel Card—Issued in the name of the faculty/staff escort . The student group must be sponsored by a department and the card can be used for travel expenses while in travel status.

The cards listed above are issued through Travel Management Services.

Travel Management Services

3. Fuel

The sole authorized credit card for fuel is the Voyager FleetCard, issued by Physical Plant—Fleet Management.

Physical Plant—Fleet Management

B. Unauthorized Credit Card Examples

HEB, Randall’s, Sam’s, Costco, and Wal-mart are examples of credit cards issued to individuals or departments on behalf of the University, but these cards are not University authorized credit cards. These cards have been issued to buy items such as refreshments and other essentials for meetings, non-entertainment merchandise, and fuel.

C. Official Occasion Related Items

Departments shall discontinue all unauthorized credit cards and use the Procard at grocery stores or other similar vendors for meeting supplies and sundries. When using the Procard for official occasion related items, departments must attach a signed Official Occasion Expense Form* (OOEF) for each purchase and include the OOEF as a basic part of the back-up documentation retained for Procard at the departmental level. Object codes 1309, 1323, 1324, 1327, 1329, 1527, and 1528 have been added to the VP7 01 format so all departments can use the Procard and assign the correct object code on those transactions.

If a department does not want to give an individual the full buying authority of the Procard, they may apply for a Procard that is accepted only at grocery stores and similar vendors.

University employees are not authorized to use the Procard to buy alcohol at package stores, nor are they authorized to use the Procard at restaurants. Alcohol may only be purchased by using the Procard at grocery stores or other similar vendors when purchasing items such as refreshments and other essentials for pre-approved meetings or events. Before purchasing alcohol using the Procard, the OOEF requires advanced approval by the applicable dean, vice president, or delegate. Itemized receipts for all purchases are always required with the Procard. In addition, it is important to note that the Procard cannot be used on accounts for which the corresponding audit object groups prevent official occasion expenditures, such as state accounts.

Advance approval by an approved delegate is required to serve alcohol in campus facilities, including leased spaces. This approval must be submitted with the Official Occasion Expense Form. Vouchers will be rejected if a delegate’s prior approval has not been obtained.  For more information, refer to the Request Exception to Serve Alcoholic Beverages at an Event on Campus page.

The Procard may be used to purchase merchandise awards for employees if preferred. Departments must provide a list of amounts and employee UT EIDs to Payroll Services if the award is over the $50 fair market de minimus amount or is not a length of service or safety achievement award. The object code for employee awards is 1527.

The Procard may also be used to purchase gift card/gift certificate awards and merchandise awards for non-employees if preferred. Departments must provide an award recipient's permanent mailing address and Social Security number, VP7 document ID, and award amount to Accounting and Financial Management Tax Services (campus mail code K5300) if the award is over the $50 fair market de minimus amount. The object code for non-employee awards is 1528.

For more information about Official Occasion expenditures and correct object codes, see the Handbook of Business Procedures section 9.2.1.

Handbook of Business Procedures Section 9.1.1.: Entertainment and Official Occasions

Procurement Card (Procard) Program

University of Texas at Austin Accounts Payable Forms

Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost

Payroll Services

Tax Services

D. Non-entertainment Merchandise

Departments shall discontinue all unauthorized credit cards and use the Procard instead.

Procurement Card (Procard) Program

E. Sam’s and Costco Cards

Departments shall discontinue use of both these credit cards unless they qualify for the Sam’s card exception noted below. Memberships may be purchased, but memberships may not be used as credit or charge accounts. Sam’s does not accept the Procard or allow purchase orders without the membership being a credit card account, and Costco does not accept the Procard or purchase orders. Therefore, all purchases from vendors requiring memberships that do not accept the Procard must be done using petty cash or on a reimbursement basis.

  • Exception for Sam’s card: Departments or units that spend in aggregate a total of $2,000 or more on an annual basis may continue using their Sam’s card as a credit card.

F. Gasoline Credit Cards

Departments shall discontinue all unauthorized oil company credit cards and apply for the Voyager FleetCard issued by Physical Plant—Fleet Management. This card allows departments to purchase fuel for departmental vehicles at discounted rates.

Physical Plant—Fleet Management

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Part 9. Expenditure Procedures - Table of Contents