Business travel 2023: how to properly cancel a business trip and get your money back

Business travel 2023: how to properly cancel a business trip and get your money back

During the coronavirus pandemic, business travel cancellations have become commonplace. The likelihood of a business trip being postponed or canceled can now be affected by factors such as an employee’s sudden illness or contact with someone who is sick, the introduction of strict quarantine measures at the destination, border closures or cancellation of flights. In this article, we will look at the main reasons for canceling business trips in 2023, and also find out how to properly process the cancellation and get a refund for tickets and hotels.

Grounds for canceling a business trip

In case of cancellation of a trip for reasons related to coronavirus infection (quarantine, closure of air traffic, etc.), Force majeure circumstances can be considered grounds for cancellation. 

When preparing documents, it is important to justify the specific reason and, if possible, refer to official documents or resolutions on the introduction of anti-Covid restrictions.

If a business trip was canceled due to the fact that an employee or his relatives fell ill with coronavirus, then the reason for the cancellation is considered to be the illness of the business traveler or his family circumstances.

How to cancel

Suppose a business trip has been cancelled. How to design it correctly? 

First, the employee or his supervisor must draw up a memo about the cancellation of the business trip, where it is necessary to indicate its reason.

Secondly, based on the memo, it is necessary to issue an order to cancel the work trip. This document is drawn up on company letterhead in free form. The text of the order must indicate specific grounds for cancellation (you can refer to official documents or recommendations of Rospotrebnadzor). 

The order also indicates the name and position of the traveler and the number of the order to be sent on a business trip. If tickets have already been purchased and a hotel room has been reserved, and the employee has been given a daily allowance, then the document also indicates the procedure for refunding. 

Then the employee must read the order and sign.

How to cancel a reservation and get your money back

After issuing an order to cancel a business trip, you must cancel your hotel reservation and return your tickets – and this must be done by the person who bought them. Due to the pandemic, many airlines have provided the opportunity to return tickets, even those purchased at a non-refundable rate. 

However, it is most often not possible to return the full amount, since carriers retain various service fees. There is also a chance that you will have to pay a penalty for canceling your hotel reservation, especially if the cancellation occurred within a short period of time. In tax accounting, these costs are recorded as non-operating expenses without taking into account the amount of VAT.

Within three days from the date of the order to cancel the trip, the employee must draw up an advance report in which he must report the funds spent and attach supporting documents. If the money for tickets and hotel was returned, then the corresponding receipt and/or notice of refund must be attached to the report.

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