content-left-bg.png
content-right-bg.png

Official international travel for business and professional development procedure

Version number 1.0 | Version effective 24 January 2022
PublishingPageContent
Official international travel for business and professional development procedure

Audience

Department-wide

Purpose

This procedure outlines the responsibilities and processes for official international travel for the purpose of business development and/or professional development activities, in line with departmental requirements and the whole-of-government Air Travel Policy.

Overview

This procedure outlines the requirements for all departmental employees to apply for official international travel and processes for submitting variations to approved official international travel.

In accordance with the whole-of-government Air Travel Policy, official international travel is only considered after exploring all alternatives, including domestic and virtual opportunities.

This procedure applies to permanent, temporary and casual employees of the department including commercialised business units, and non-departmental employees such as contractors and consultants where:

  • the individual is representing or seeking to represent the department; and/or
  • departmental funds are to be used for any travel-related costs.

The procedure outlines the planning, application, approval, booking and travel processes, responsibilities and reporting requirements for official international travel. It also outlines the process for submitting a variation for travel that has been approved and where re-approval is required.

The procedure does not cover International School Study Tours (DoE employees only) or Domestic travel

Responsibilities

Primary contact

  • meets the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) timelines for approval by submitting travel application at least 10 weeks prior to the planned departure
  • submits a variation for approval where variations to travel are required
  • provides mandatory documents including detailed itinerary, proposed flights and times, conference program, invitation to attend and presentation or papers to be presented
  • notifies the International Travel Unit of any early bird discount/payment due dates or any dates that will affect the traveller’s participation at an event 
  • ensures that the appropriate approval is obtained prior to making any bookings and payments
  • is aware of the Code of conduct for the Queensland public service and the department’s Standards of practice (DoE employees only) that supports the best use of government resources
  • provides all travel-related receipts in preparation for the Traveller to complete the international travel report and other expense claims
  • determines the need for Teacher Relief Scheme including the number of days and costs (school-based travellers)
  • identifies and manages potential risks associated with the travel, accommodation, health and/or proposed activities and has a planned response in case of an emergency
  • books flights and accommodation using the whole-of-Government arrangement for international travel management where possible.

Traveller

  • ensures they hold a valid passport with at least six months validity beyond the intended return date to Australia
  • ensures appropriate visas are obtained (including transit visas where they are required), before leaving Australia
  • provides supporting documents to Primary Contact to attach to the application 
  • is aware of the Code of conduct for the Queensland public service and the department’s Standards of practice (DoE employees only) that supports the best use of government resources
  • provides and retains all travel-related receipts in preparation to complete the international travel report and other expense claims
  • is responsible for personal health and wellbeing during travel, including taking medications and organising immunisations prior to departure
  • is aware of the responsibilities for Applying for leave combined with official international travel
  • understands their name, school, institute or work unit and the purpose of travel will be published in the department’s Annual Report and the Queensland Government Open Data website, and may be published for promotion and publicity purposes of the international travel undertaken
  • complies with any Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) travel advice and all Australian and Queensland requirements for country/ies of travel
  • ensures appropriate travel insurance is arranged through the department’s travel insurance provider (DoE employees only).

Supervisor (including line-manager, Principal, Regional Director or delegate, Manager, Director)

  • assesses the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) or variation to travel against requirements and endorse or decline request
  • reviews any claims for travel related expenses according to financial delegation (DoE employees only) limits ensuring the appropriate forms are completed and receipts are retained
  • considers relieving arrangements (corporate travellers)
  • considers Teacher Relief Scheme arrangements including the number of days and costs (school-based travellers)
  • considers potential risks associated with the travel, accommodation, health and/or proposed activities that have been identified and endorse the planned response in case of an emergency.

International Travel Unit (including Senior Project Officer, Principal Advisor, Executive Director, Assistant Director-General)

The International Travel Unit is situated within the Office of the Assistant Director-General, State Schools – Rural, Remote and International. 

  • reviews the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) or variation ensuring all appropriate documents and endorsements are provided

Executive Director and Assistant Director-General assess the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) or variation to travel against requirements and endorse or decline request

  • where the travel costs are externally funded, fully or partially, the Executive Director, Department of Education International (DEi) will confirm any potential or actual conflict of interest which may require ministerial approval (including travel under five (5) hours flying time from Brisbane which would normally need Director-General approval only)
  • coordinates the department’s international travel application and reporting processes, in accordance with the whole-of-government Air Travel Policy.

Deputy Director-General

  • reviews and endorses the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) or variation if it is considered essential to agency and/or government objectives
  • reviews and rejects the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) or variation if travel does not meet requirements for travel.

Director-General

The Director-General, Department of Education, has authority to:

  • approve official international travel if it is within five (5) hours flying time from Brisbane, where:
    • acceptance of any external funding does not give rise to any real, potential or perceived conflict of interest
    • if personal travel is combined with official travel an endorsed leave request and advice from the Corporate Taxation Unit is attached
  • recall an employee to duty who is undertaking personal travel combined with official international travel
  • cancel or deny travel on a case-by-case basis where DFAT has advised risk to personal safety.

Minister for Education

The Minister for Education has authority to approve:

  • official international travel if it exceeds five (5) hours flying time from Brisbane
  • official international travel taken in conjunction with personal travel, regardless of the destination or flight time
  • the use of any external funding that may give rise to any real, potential or perceived conflict of interest
  • cancel or deny travel on a case-by-case basis where DFAT has advised risk to personal safety.

Process

Step 1 – Planning

Primary contact must:

  1. Determine the suitability of travel
  • identify whether travel is planned for a country/ies where a Smartraveller Level 4 ‘Do not travel’ warning is in place – travel cannot occur to these locations
  • follow the requirements of the whole-of-government Air Travel Policy for official travel.
  • obtain the minimum number of quotes in line with the Purchasing and procurement procedure.
  • comply with the Code of conduct for the Queensland public service and the Appropriate and ethical use of public resources policy to support the best use of government resources.
  • determine that the proposed itinerary is feasible.
  • ensure there is an approved COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) in place for all accommodation. Homestays are not permitted
  • determine the need for Teacher Relief Scheme including the number of days and costs (school-based travellers)
  • identify, manage and prepare a planned response for potential risks associated with the travel, accommodation, health and/or proposed activities in case of an emergency.
  1. Complete and/or arrange all necessary travel documentation and vaccinations
  2. Complete and/or arrange al necessary supporting documentation required for travel
  • seek quote for the departments mandatory travel insurance and emergency assistance services with GoSafe
  • ensure the P&C Association/School Council have provided a letter of support (school-based travellers) or a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organisation, business unit plan (corporate users).

Traveller must:

  1. Arrange necessary travel documentation and vaccinations

Supervisor must:

  1. Consider Teacher Relief Scheme including the number of days and costs (school-based travellers)
  2. Review potential risks associated with the travel, accommodation, health and/or proposed activities that have been identified and the planned response in case of an emergency

Refer to the Official international travel for business and professional development handbook for more information regarding Planning.

Refer to Primary contact/Traveller checklist and Supervisor checklist.

Multiple travellers

Refer to the Official international travel for business and professional development handbook for more information regarding Multiple Travellers.

Accompanied travel

Travellers may be accompanied, for example, by a family member or partner. Refer to the Official international travel for business and professional development handbook for more information regarding Accompanied Travel.

Combining official travel and personal travel

Refer to the Applying for leave combined with official international travel procedure for more information regarding Combining official travel and personal travel. 

Step 2 – Applying 

Primary Contact/Traveller must:

  1. Complete all aspects of the International Travel Request (DoE employees) through the departments Service Catalogue Online at least 10 weeks prior to the planned departure and attach all completed mandatory documents including:
  • detailed itinerary template (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
  • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
  • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
  • P&C Association/School Council letter of support (school-based travellers) or a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organisation, business unit plan (corporate users)
  • GoSafe Insurance quote
  • hotel or accommodation establishment quote/s, including a copy of the COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar)
  • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or departmental priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper.

Refer to the Official international travel for business and professional development handbook for more information regarding Applying.

Refer to the Primary contact/Traveller checklist.

Step 3 – Travel review and endorsement  

Supervisor must:

  1. Determine whether International Travel Request (DoE employees only) has been submitted within the timeframes for approval and travel is viable and appropriate
  • Review all documentation associated with the travel including:
    • detailed itinerary template (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
    • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
    • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
    • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
    • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
    • GoSafe Insurance quote
    • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
    • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper
    • potential risks associated with the travel, accommodation, health and/or proposed activities that have been identified and the planned response in case of an emergency
    • if applicable, supporting documentation providing a detailed explanation of lateness, reasons the application must be supported/approved and outlining consequences if the application is not progressed.
  1. Determine whether International Travel Request (DoE employees only) should be endorsed or rejected in Service Catalogue Online.

International Travel Unit must:

  1. Determine whether International Travel Request (DoE employees only) has been submitted within the timeframes for approval and travel is viable and appropriate
  • Review all documentation associated with the travel including:
    • detailed itinerary template (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
    • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
    • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
    • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
    • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
    • GoSafe Insurance quote
    • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
    • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper.
    • potential risks associated with the travel, accommodation, health and/or proposed activities that have been identified and a planned response has been prepared in case of an emergency
    • if applicable, supporting documentation providing a detailed explanation of lateness, reasons the application must be supported/approved and outlining consequences if the application is not progressed
    • where the travel costs are externally funded, fully or partially, the Executive Director, DEi will confirm any potential or actual conflict of interest which may require ministerial approval (including travel under 5 hrs flying time from Brisbane which would normally need Director-General approval only).
  1. ED and ADG review and endorse the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) or reject and seek further information

Deputy Director-General must:

  1. Determine whether International Travel Request (DoE employees only) has been submitted within the timeframes for approval and travel is viable and appropriate
  • Review all documentation associated with travel including:
    • detailed itinerary template (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
    • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
    • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
    • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
    • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
    • GoSafe Insurance quote
    • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
    • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper
    • potential risks associated with the travel, accommodation, health and/or proposed activities that have been identified and a planned response has been prepared in case of an emergency
    • if applicable, supporting documentation providing a detailed explanation of lateness, reasons the application must be supported/approved and outlining consequences if the application is not progressed.
  1. Endorse the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) or reject and seek further information

Refer to the Supervisor checklist.

Refer to the Official International travel for business and professional development application workflow.

Step 4 – Final approval 

Director-General must:

  1. Assess whether travel is viable and appropriate
  • Review and endorse all documentation associated with the travel including:
    • detailed itinerary (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
    • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
    • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
    • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
    • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
    • GoSafe Insurance quote
    • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
    • letter of invitation, conference program
    • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities
    • potential risks identified and noted
    • if applicable, supporting documentation providing a detailed explanation of lateness, reasons the application must be supported/approved and outlining consequences if the application is not progressed
  1. Approve or reject International Travel Request (DoE employees only) for travel under five (5) hours flying time from Brisbane. Refer International Travel Request (DoE employees only) to Minster for travel over five (5) hours flying time from Brisbane.

International Travel Unit must:

  1. Advise Primary contact/Traveller if International Travel Request (DoE employees only) has been approved or not approved

Director-General or Minister travel

If the Director-General or Minister is travelling:

  • within five (5) hours flying time from Brisbane, approval of the Director-General, Department of the Premier and Cabinet must be sought
  • to a destination with more than five (5) hours flying time from Brisbane, approval of the Premier must be sought. A Premier’s Briefing Note must be sent from the Minister to the Premier together with the completed International Travel Request (DoE employees only) application.

Step 5 – Travel Arrangements – before and during travel 

Before travel

Primary contact must:

  1. Submit a variation via the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) through the department's Service Catalogue Online for approval where variations to travel are required
  2. Complete the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) by selecting 'No' to 'Is this a new iTravel Request?' and referring to the existing iTravel Request number (eg: TRV000123) as soon as changes are known and attach documentation associated with the variation, such as:
  • detailed itinerary (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
  • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
  • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
  • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
  • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
  • GoSafe Insurance quote
  • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
  • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper
  • identify any new potential risks
  • a copy of the initial approved International Travel Request (DoE employees only).

Failure to provide sufficient information will delay the review and approval process.

Refer to the Official international travel for business and professional development handbook for more information regarding Variations to approved travel. 

  1. Request the cancellation of the International Travel Request (DoE employees only) by contacting the International Travel unit in the event travel gets postponed or cancelled
  2. Ensure final approval is received and documented prior to making any bookings or payments
  • book accommodation
  • book flights
  • ensure mandatory travel insurance coverage with GoSafe is in place.

Traveller must:

  1. Ensure copies of their passports, visas, vaccinations and insurance policies are taken and held at the school/business unit, with family/friends and with other travel documentation
  2. Ensure international roaming services have been checked with relevant mobile phone service provider
  3. If required, submit the Travel Advance to allow for the appropriate transfer of money to personal account
  4. Apply for access to Microsoft 365 applications and services by requesting a temporary exemption by logging a request via the departments Services Catalogue Online (school-based travellers).

Supervisor must:

  1. Review and determine whether the variation is viable and appropriate
  • Review and endorse documentation associated with the variation, such as:
    • detailed itinerary template (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
    • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
    • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
    • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
    • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
    • GoSafe Insurance quote
    • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
    • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper
    • any new potential risks identified and noted  
    • a copy of the initial approved International Travel Request (DoE employees only)
  1. Determine whether the variation should be endorsed or rejected in Service Catalogue Online.

International Travel Unit must:

  1. Review and determine whether the variation is viable and appropriate
  • Review and endorse documentation associated with the variation, such as:
    • detailed itinerary template (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
    • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
    • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
    • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
    • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
    • GoSafe Insurance quote
    • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
    • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper.
    • any new potential risks identified and noted  
    • a copy of the initial approved International Travel Request (DoE employees only)
  1. Determine whether the variation should progress or not for approval.

Director-General must:

  1. Review and determine whether the variation is viable and appropriate
  • Review and endorse all documentation associated with the variation, such as:
    • detailed itinerary template (mandatory template in Word format) and emergency contact details
    • proposed flight schedule/quote with details of flight times, numbers and class of travel
    • estimated costings including flights, accommodation, vaccinations, registration fees, transport/transfer costs, taxes, insurance, food, visa/passport costs, grant/prize money, cultural gift and donation
    • a letter of support from the P&C Association/School Council, principal or sponsor (school-based travellers) 
    • a letter of support/invitation from the agent, sponsor or organization, business plan (corporate travellers) 
    • GoSafe Insurance quote
    • COVID Safe Industry Plan (or similar) accommodation quote, including a copy of the COVID safe plan
    • any other relevant background information to support your request for international travel such as link to school or DoE priorities, conference program, presentation, research paper
    • any new potential risks identified and noted  
    • a copy of the initial approved International Travel Request (DoE employees only)
  1. Determine whether the variation should be approved or rejected.

Refer to the Official international travel for business and professional development handbook for more information regarding Travel arrangements – before and after.

During travel

Primary Contact must:

  1. Ensure the Primary Contact is contactable at all times during the travel period should the travelling officer need to make any changes to travel arrangements

Traveller must:

  1. Contact their supervisor immediately in the event the traveller needs to return to Australia urgently and unexpectedly
  2. Be contactable at all times and check-in with their supervisor each day
  3. Monitor any health warnings issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO) or the Australian Government Department of Health and Smartraveller Travel advisories
  4. Retain receipts for the purpose of corporate card reconciliations and travel claims

Refer to Primary contact/Traveller checklist.

Supervisor must:

  1. Ensure the supervisor is contactable at all times during the travel period should the travelling officer need to make contact.

Refer to Supervisor checklist.

Step 6 – Post travel requirements

Primary contact must:

  1. Provide any documentation to the Traveller to support the International Travel Report

Traveller must:

  1. Complete an International Travel Report within two weeks of returning from overseas and submit to their supervisor for review
  2. Report any adverse events that occur during the travel to the supervisor
  3. Report incidents that may have occurred during the travel in accordance with the Health, safety and wellbeing incident management procedure or contact the relevant Regional Senior Health and Safety Consultant.
  4. Review and document processes and practices for future travel, and provide feedback to supervisor as relevant
  5. Claim reimbursement for any personal expenses incurred through Promaster (DoE employees only), where deemed reasonable

Supervisor/s must:

  1. Review the International Travel Report
  2. Confirm that the use of funds was appropriate and in line with the approved estimated costs.
  3. Endorse the International Travel Report
  4. Progress the International Travel Report to the next supervisor/financial delegate for final approval
  5. Endorse claims for reimbursement of personal expenses incurred where deemed reasonable

For more information about claiming work related expenses please refer to the International Travelling, Relieving and Living Expenses (Directive 10/11).

International Travel Unit must:

  1. Review the International Travel Report
  2. Confirm that the use of funds was appropriate and in line with the approved estimated costs
  3. Accept the International Travel Report
  4. Maintain record of international travel expenditure

Refer to the Official international travel for business and professional development handbook for more information regarding International Travel Report and Expenditure.

Definitions

Term

Definition

Agency

Entities and other organisations within the DoE portfolio.

Business development

Official travel by employees marketing and promoting the Queensland state education system overseas or developing commercial relationships with international agencies, organisations and schools.

Primary contact

Lead officer in charge of organising and at times participating in the travel e.g.: Business Manager, Head of Department, Classroom Teacher and Language Teacher.

Supervisor

Includes line-manager, Principal, Regional Director or delegate, Manager, Director.

International Travel Variation

Applies to official approved travel that requires variation to the initial International Travel Request (DoE employees only), e.g. additional destinations that require additional flights, accommodation, substituting staff.

International Travel Report

A report generated by Service Catalogue Online (SCO) to the responsible officer for the completion of the international travel report to report on actual costs.

Commercialised business units

Education Queensland International – International Business provides education programs, services and experiences for students and teachers in Queensland and overseas (including school reviews provided by the Education Improvement Branch).

Official international travel

Official international travel (overseas travel) is undertaken for agency of government business undertaken outside of Australia. A current passport is mandatory to undertake International Travel, and some countries travel visas may also be required.

Personal/private travel

Any activity not directly or necessarily related to agency or government business undertaken during official international travel between departure from Australia and return.

Professional Development

Acquiring skills, knowledge and ongoing learning opportunities to improve an individual’s ability to do their role and grow as a professional. Examples could include - attending conferences, seminars, forums, courses, delivering a paper, carrying out research or participating in activities related to sister state relationships.

Travel costs

Costs, fees, allowances or expenses associated with or incidental to official travel, including but not limited to travel fares and accommodation expenses.

Value for money

Value for money is the overarching consideration when booking flights and accommodation for international travel. Value for money requires the use of Queensland Government resources in an efficient, effective, economical and ethical manner that is consistent with the whole-of-government Air Travel Policy.

Legislation

Delegations/Authorisations

Other resources

Superseded versions

Previous seven years shown. Minor version updates not included.

Nil

Review date

24 January 2025
Attribution CC BY
PageFeedback_BottomLeft
Was this page useful?
SocialMedia_BottomRight