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Alternatives to Out-Of-Pocket Expenses

In order to minimize out-of-pocket expenses, consider using a card product to make purchases. With Concur, using a card product, such as the Travel & Entertainment Card or the Procurement Card, is simple and effective. Departments should also consider Oracle Procurement or Amazon Business for their purchasing needs.

With Concur, all card product procedures are centralized into one single application.

Oracle Financials Cloud is UC San Diego's eProcurement site, a modern solution for the University’s business needs. It frees up employees to focus their time and effort on advancing the education, research and public service mission of UC San Diego.

Amazon Business is the business supply purchasing platform for Amazon. It’s a good spot to purchase hard-to-find items and is available as a punchout supplier in Oracle Procurement. Although we have many competitively priced items (Office, Lab, and IT supplies) already in Oracle and through other punchout Agreement Suppliers, Amazon Business can be a good back-up for those more unique needs.

These different payment methods offer the following advantages to employees:

  • Purchases made with these payment methods are directly charged to the University, avoiding the risk of a financial hardship for an employee
  • More efficient in payment and reconciliation
  • Just as convenient as paying out of pocket

The following expenses should not be paid out of pocket in any circumstance:

  • Electronics
  • Shipping
  • Office Supplies

For specific guidance on determining the appropriate method of payment for common and routine purchases, refer to our Procure-to-Pay Decision Matrix.

Card Products

Here are some benefits to using a card product as an alternative for out-of-pocket expenses:

  • Purchases made with card products are directly charged to the University, avoiding the risk of a financial hardship for an employee
  • Using a card product is more efficient, as an expense is automatically created in Concur within 24-48 hours of purchase
    • Fill in the details related to the expense, add it to an Expense Report, and you are good to go!
  • Expense Reports pertaining to card products have a shorter reconciliation period than out-of-pocket reimbursements
  • Card products are as convenient as paying out of pocket, if not more
    • Since the card products operate the same way as normal credit cards, payment is not delayed

The Travel & Entertainment Card can be used for any expenses incurred on Travel status, as long as the expense adheres to travel policy:

The Travel & Entertainment Card can also be used for meeting and entertainment expenses in accordance with Entertainment Policy BUS-79.

The Procurement Card simplifies buying and paying for most routine, low-cost goods, and services under $4,999 that do not involve a contract. Common out of pocket expenses that can be used with the Procurement Card include:

  • Conference Registration (without any other Travel expenses)
  • Membership Fees
  • Office Supplies
  • See the Procurement Card Common Purchases and Restrictions page for a comprehensive list of allowable and unallowable purchases

You cannot use a Procurement Card to purchase services when a vendor/individual has to physically come onto campus. (e.g., Technician coming onto campus to fix an office printer).

Speak with your supervisor or Fund Manager to discuss applying for a Travel & Entertainment Card or a Procurement Card. The following KBAs provide guidance on how to apply for a University card product in Concur.

Check out our Concur: Help Blink page for resources and training to get started in Concur Travel & Expense.

Concur Booking

Concur is UC San Diego's official booking site for all business travel, including employees and guests. Employees can also use Concur to book personal travel!

  • Access to centrally-billed cards for airfare and local hotel, eliminating out-of-pocket costs and reimbursement wait times
  • Negotiated benefits and savings with all of our travel partner suppliers for airfare, hotel, and rental cars
  • Automatic enrollment in UC’s traveler insurance program, covering a wide range of incidents and accidents across the globe
  • Reservations and receipts flow directly into Concur Expense for smooth reconciliations
  • Policy compliance built into the booking tool
  • Ability to earn and use your own personal loyalty program rewards
  • Increased visibility to University travel spend, minimized unused tickets, and rich data reporting to maximize savings
  • Free TripIt Pro app, making travel itinerary management a snap

Employee and Guest Travelers can have their airfare paid for in Concur with the built-in CTS Air Card. Incoming Guest Travelers can have their hotel room nights paid for with Concur's CTS Hotel Card. For all other expenses that cannot be paid with a CTS Card, a department can request a T&E Temporary Virtual Card for Guest Travelers. 

For more information about booking Travel through Concur, visit our Concur Travel Blink page. If you are ready to book now, check out our KBA on How to Book Travel in Concur Travel.

Oracle Procurement

Oracle Procurement is UC San Diego's official Procurement platform. Oracle ensures that UC San Diego's culture of innovation, ambition and data-driven decisions continue as the University experiences unprecedented growth.

  • Easy-to-search list of competitively priced items
  • Top-tier, reliable suppliers within hosted search results
  • Punchout links for unlimited selection
  • Available custom requisition for unique special quote orders
  • Streamlined purchasing process for approval routing

Check out our Oracle Procurement: Help Blink page for resources and training to get started in Oracle Procurement.

Amazon Business

Using Amazon Business provides the following benefits for departments:

  • Unlimited Free Prime Shipping on all qualified orders
  • Price and availability are 'locked-in' for 7 days once items are placed in your Oracle shopping cart
  • The ability to purchase from Amazon with a purchase order and/or the ability to purchase from with a Procurement Card
  • Access to a specialized business only Customer Service Team
  • Electronic Invoicing – No Paper Invoices or Attaching Receipts to Concur

Check out our Amazon Business Blink page for an overview of the program and Frequently Asked Questions.