Booking Travel for University Related Activities
A. Airline tickets (for Visitor tickets see E. below)
1. How should I book my airline ticket?It depends on the purpose of your trip
All flights for travel related to administrative purposes, including flights for job candidates, must be booked using Direct Travel, either through the services of a travel consultant or directly via the online booking tool.
Flights for academic staff, including librarians, for academic research and teaching purposes are not required to use Direct Travel. This includes flights for visitors (other than job candidates). All staff and faculty may use Direct Travel and benefit from McGill negotiated airline discounts for university related and funded travel. The University recommends using the services of a Quebec Licensed Travel Company.
The University has a ‘Best available airfare guarantee' from Direct Travel - if the traveler finds a lower fare from another travel supplier licensed in Quebec for the exact same everything, Direct Travel will match the lower fare (certain conditions apply).
1. How should I book my accommodations?
In Montreal including the West Island: McGill Official hotels
In the Province of Quebec: Government of Quebec Hotel Program
In the rest of Canada: Canadian Association of University Business Officers (CAUBO) negotiated rates or through Direct Travel who has a network with corporate rates
Rest of the world: through Direct Travel who has an international network with corporate rates
C. Vehicle Rentals
1. How should I book my vehicle rental?
Vehicle rentals can be booked with any supplier. McGill has agreements with several vehicle rental companies within Canada and around the world. Or book through Direct Travel who has McGill's negotiated agreements and corporate rates with all major vehicle rental companies worldwide.
D. Train Tickets
1. How should I book my VIA Rail tickets?
VIA Rail tickets can be purchased through the McGill VIA Rail landing page (sign in required), through Direct Travel or by calling VIA Rail and quoting McGill’s contract number. Payment by FOAPAL is possible if booking through DIrect Travel.
E. Visitor Bookings
1. How do I book my visitors?
Visitors can book themselves, however if the sponsor would like to have the airfare paid up front by the University and potentially benefit from the McGill discounts, then the booking needs to be made through a travel consultant at Direct Travel.
2. Can I use the negotiated discounts for travel paid from a research fund?
3. I am traveling with someone else whose trip is not being paid by McGill University. Can they obtain the same price?
In general these contracts are only applicable to McGill travelers travelling for University-related activities, however there are a few exceptions, check with the Travel Management Company.
4. Can we apply the discounts to visitors/consultants?
Yes, if the visitor/consultant is being paid for by McGill. In order to access the negotiated pricing, someone from a McGill faculty or unit needs to initiate the reservation.
Eligibility for McGill Negotiated Discounts
Please note that discounts do not apply to personal travel except for VIA Rail or car rentals.
A. Airline tickets
1. What are the requirements to benefit from the McGill discounts?
The airline discounts are accessible to all McGill faculty, staff and students traveling for University- related activities on funds administered through the University and booked through Direct Travel.
Visitors sponsored by McGill are entitled to benefit from these discounts as well
2. Can I use the negotiated discounts for my personal travel?
No, they only apply for University-related travel, except for VIA Rail and Car rentals which permits discounts on personal travel
3. I am traveling with someone else whose trip is not being paid by McGill; can they obtain the same discount?
No, McGill negotiated contracts are only applicable to McGill travelers travelling for University-related activities, however there are a few exceptions, check with the Travel Management Company.
4. Can we apply the discounts to Visitors/consultants?
Yes, only if McGill has agreed to pay for the cost of the trip. In order to access the negotiated discounts, someone from the faculty or unit needs to initiate the reservation through Direct Travel.
1. What do I need in order to be eligible for the McGill Official Hotels Program in Montreal and the West Island?
University Program: book through dedicated email or telephone numbers and process through MMP
Guest Program: book through McGill's Guest Program landing page
2. What do I need in order to be eligible for the Government of Quebec Hotel Program rates?
You must have a McGill ID and be prepared to present your ID when checking-in at the hotel.
3. Can I use the Quebec Government Hotel Program for my personal travel?
No, discounted rates are only applicable for University-related travel.
4. Are there any discounted rates for hotels outside of the Province of Quebec?
Yes, you can access rates negotiated by the Canadian Association of University Business Officers – CAUBO. For a list of hotels and rates consult CAUBO’s webpage.
C. Train Tickets
1. Can I apply VIA Rail discounts for personal travel?
Yes, you can use VIA Rail for personal travel. Refer to VIA McGill webpage for full details and conditions.
D. Vehicle Rentals
1. Can I apply the vehicle rental discounts for personal travel?
Yes. A valid McGill ID must be presented when picking up the vehicle.
1. Can I purchase travel through MMP (McGill MarketPlace)?
No, it is not possible to purchase travel through MMP using a Purchase Order. Exception: McGill Official Hotel Program properties.
2. Can I use any travel agency or any online booking site to book my airline ticket?
It depends on the purpose of your trip
All flights for travel related to administrative purposes, including flights for job candidates, must be booked using Direct Travel, either through the services of a travel consultant or directly on their booking tool.
Flights for academic staff, including librarians, for academic research and teaching purposes are not required to use Vision Travel. This includes flights for visitors (other than job candidates). All staff and faculty may use Direct Travel and benefit from McGill negotiated airline discounts for university related and funded travel.The University recommends using the services of Direct Travel or at a minimum a Quebec Licensed Travel Company.
3. Does Direct Travel charge a service fee?
Yes. The list of fees can be found here (login required). Booking through the online booking tool, provides savings. A trip consists of any or all of these elements: airfare (one way, return or multiple city), hotel and car (if applicable).
4. What if I find a cheaper airfare compared to the quote provided by Direct Travel or via the Online Booking Tool?
The University has a ‘Best available airfare guarantee’ from Direct Travel - if the traveler finds a lower fare from another travel supplier licensed in Quebec for the exact same everything, Vision will match the lower fare (certain conditions apply).
5. Can I book my rail ticket through Direct Travel ?
Yes through a travel consultant and payment by FOAPAL is possible.
6. Can I book the airline discounts online without going though a travel company?
No, airline discounts are only available through Direct Travel for university related travel.
Supplier Contract Information
1. Where can I access the information about the airline discounts?
2. Can I book the airline discounts myself online without going through a travel consultant?
3. What is the discount percentage on the airline contracts?
The discounts vary according to airline, destination and fare type.
4. Is there a discount on all fares and to all destinations?
No, it varies. These agreements do not preclude you to compare pricing for all airlines flying to your destination.
5. What insurances are included in the vehicle rental contracted rates?
3rd Party Liability Insurance is included in the rental prices within Canada. In addition, if payment is made with a McGill issued American Express Corporate card then Collision/Loss Damage Waiver (CDW/LDW) is also included. Further details on insurance guidelines see link.
Online Booking Tool
1. How do I access the Online Booking Tool that houses McGill’s discounted airline fares plus all other airlines?
Already registered with a profile? Log on to Concur and enter your username and password.
New user? You must first create your profile. Follow the New User link.
2. What personal information will I need to provide in order to create a profile?
Minimum information is required for your profile: university email address, your name as it appears on your passport, faculty or unit, office telephone number and your date of birth. That is all that is necessary. The rest of the information can be provided on a voluntary basis.
3. Can I book tickets for any airline company when using the online booking tool (OBT)?
Yes as long as it is not an instant purchase type fare (i.e Basic fares with Air Canada)
4. Is there any fees for using the OBT ?
Yes, there is a fee per trip booked (one-way, return or multi-city). One trip consists of any or all of these elements: air, hotel and car. If you choose to book only one way and at a later date decide to book your return flight separately, another fee will be charged.
5. Where can I find instructions for the OBT?
For instructions, see the Concur Instruction Guide. For issues or help please contact obt [at] dt.ca (the support team )
6. Is it possible to cancel or change an airline, car rental or hotel reservation through the OBT?
No, you must contact a travel consultant for these transactions.
1. Can I pay for travel with my Pcard?
No. Travel related expenses cannot be charged to a Pcard.
2. Can I request a Purchase Order (PO) through MMP to pay for my travel?
No, Purchase Orders cannot be used for travel with the exception of the MOHP otherwise all McGill related travel can only be reimbursed through Minerva Expense Reimbursement Tool.
3. How do I pay for the airline tickets purchased through Direct Travel?
All airfares purchased through Vision Travel for academic or research related purposes can be paid by FOAPAL form or by personal credit card. Travel for administrative purposes must be paid by FOAPAL form.
4. How do I pay for airline tickets purchased elsewhere?
You must pay with your personal credit card.
5. How do I book and pay for hotels?
You can pay with your personal credit card or through MMP if it is a MHOP property
6. How do I book and pay for train travel?
You must pay with a personal credit card. FOAPAL form is also acceptable for train tickets if booked through Direct Travel
7. How do I book and pay for vehicle rentals?
You must pay with your personal credit card.
8. What insurance is included with the McGill American Express Corporate card?
When you use the McGill AMEX card to rent a vehicle Collision/Loss Damage Waiver (LDW/CDW) is included - ONLY IN NORTH AMERICA.
If renting a vehicle outside of North America contact Royal Sun Alliance 1-800-243-0198 (the Underwriting Department of AMEX ) to clarify coverage in the country where you are picking up the vehicle.
9. Where can I find more information about travel reimbursement?
Go to the following web page: Reimbursement of Expenses.
Please note that under the Quebec Office de la Protection du Consommateur (Quebec Consumer Protection Agency) all purchases made through a licensed Travel Company in Quebec are protected and subject to a fee of 0.35% ($3.50 per $1000) since November 2021. This fee will appear on each invoice.
1. Do I still collect Air Canada’s Aeroplan or other travel supplier loyalty points when I purchase an airline ticket through the McGill program?
Yes, all loyalty points remain with the individual traveler.
2. Do I have to use the contracted airlines?
No, you can book tickets with any airline
3. Do I have to register before traveling on behalf of McGill?
Yes, you must register yourself on the McGill University Travel Registration Form for Faculty and Staff
4. Where can I find the travel advice and advisories issued by the Canadian Government?
5. Where can I get more information on Sustainable Travel?
For student related travel please refer to the International Mobility Guidelines for Students’ Travel and other important information on McGill Abroad's website
Personal Vehicle - read before using your vehicle for University related activity
- It is the responsibility of the traveler to ensure that adequate insurance is in place for the use of a personal vehicle for a university related travel.
- Personal vehicles are not covered by the University’s insurance policy.
- Prior to using a personal vehicle for a University related activity, the traveler must contact their insurance provider to verify all conditions and limitations in their policy associated with such use.
- There may be restrictions inherent in the policy with respect to use – other than personal – such as number of passengers and number of kilometers. Additional coverage may be required.
- The University does not reimburse for additional personal insurance coverage or any other costs associated with a personal vehicle, except for the car allowance allocated on a per kilometer basis or gas usage based on receipts.
- In the event of a claim, the owner of the vehicle will be required to approach his/her own insurer for reimbursement of expenses.
- All costs incurred as the result of a collision or other physical damage to a personal vehicle is the responsibility of the traveler and are not reimbursable by the University. Such costs may include but are not limited to: increases to premiums on driver's license, insurance costs and deductibles.
- McGill’s Risk Mitigation and Insurance Unit recommend that there be a minimum of $1,000,000 third party liability insurance on the vehicle insurance policy.