NBER Travel Reimbursement Policy

NBER Travel Reimbursement Policy

The NBER's travel reimbursement policy is designed to enable as many researchers as possible to participate in the large number of meetings that are held each year. Researchers who are fortunate enough to have other sources of support for their travel costs, or who have grants to which their expenses can be charged, are encouraged to utilize those funds when possible. The NBER will reimburse reasonable expenses that travelers incur in connection with its meetings. The policy specifies limits on various expense categories. Should extenuating circumstances make outlays in excess of these limits necessary, please bring them to the attention of the NBER's conference department staff before the meeting. Expenses may only be reimbursed once -- by submitting an expense claim to the NBER, a researcher warrants that the same expenses are not being reimbursed from another source. Expenses not covered by the NBER may be reimbursed from other sources, such as an NBER-based research grant or a research fund at another institution. The NBER does not pay per diems.

General Guidelines

The NBER's auditors require that travel reimbursement forms must be submitted within 90 days of any meeting. Reimbursement requests must be accompanied by original receipts and require a signature. Questions about reimbursement issues should be directed to the NBER Conference Department at 617-868-3900 or confer@nber.org.

Domestic Air Travel

The NBER will reimburse the lowest available reasonable air fares for round-trip travel to the meeting from your home town. First class, business class, and full-fare or upgraded coach fares will not be reimbursed. It is usually advantageous to book travel well in advance of a meeting - ideally at least 21 days in advance, when the lowest cost tickets are usually available. Please check all carriers, including those who do not sell through travel agents, such as Southwest and JetBlue, when planning your travel; the best fares are usually available from the airlines' own websites.

International Air Travel

U.S.-flag carriers must be used for foreign travel that will be charged to a federal grant. This restriction does not apply to most NBER meetings, and it will usually be noted in pre-meeting correspondence from the NBER Conference Department. Nevertheless, if you are traveling from abroad to attend an NBER meeting, please discuss any plan to use a foreign carrier with the NBER staff prior to purchase.

Local Ground Transportation

The NBER does not reimburse long solo taxi rides, limousine rides, or expensive car rentals, but will reimburse actual expenses up to $100 per meeting for bus, train or taxi services, subject to the presentation of original receipts. If rides are shared, please include that information on the reimbursement request. If you use your own car, mileage is reimbursed at 65.5 cents per mile. Actual parking costs will be reimbursed to a limit of $75.

Hotel Information

The NBER negotiates special rates with the hotels that host our meetings, and room charges for the minimum number of nights necessary for participants to attend the meeting are billed directly to the NBER's account. The number of nights reimbursed may vary by the home location of the participants in a given meeting, and it will be noted in the logistics memo circulated advance of the meeting. In some cases, staying for an additional night may be approved when it permits substantial saving on airfare, for example when it permits a "Saturday night stay" fare. The hotel will be notified of the number of nights that may be billed to the NBER account; additional nights at the hotel will not be reimbursed. Meeting participants are responsible for any incidental charges, such as room service, movies, and phone charges, as well as for any charges for additional nights spent at the hotel.

Please notify the NBER as soon as possible, even on the day of the meeting, if your travel plans or are disrupted and you need to modify your hotel request. Meeting participants are expected to reimburse the NBER for any hotel reservations that are not used.


Meals are generally provided to meeting participants. The NBER will reimburse expenses of up to $50 for dinner on the evening prior to a morning meeting, provided the reimbursement request is accompanied by a detailed receipt that separately identifies any charges for alcohol (funders often require this to be itemized separately). Other meal charges will not be reimbursed.