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Procure-to-Pay Decision Matrix

Learn more about the procure-to-pay payment options

The Procure-to-Pay Decision Matrix guides University faculty and staff in determining the appropriate method of payment for common, routine purchases.

  • All contracts and agreements must be approved through IPPS Business Contracts. Departments are not authorized to sign agreements.
  • Out of pocket purchases are not the preferred method of payment and should only be used in an emergency.


  • Express Card: UC San Diego’s Visa® procurement card for low dollar purchases that do not require a purchase order or signed contract and cannot be purchased with a contracted supplier. Transactions are processed online in ECManager.
  • MyPayments: Application for requesting direct payment to vendors and individuals that do not require a purchase order
  • Marketplace: Application for purchasing goods and services that require a contract or purchase order
  • Special Method: Requires a specific ordering and payment process

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Common Purchases

P: Preferred Method

A: Allowed method when the preferred method is not available

E: Allowed as an expection with prior approval

X: Special Method

Express Card MyPayments Marketplace Special Method

Abstract/journal publication fee

Advertisement - recruitment, event, promotional P A A
Alcohol for ships operations or specialized inventory P
Animals X
Audiovisual equipment & supplies A P
Award, recognition or prize; employee or student P
Award or prize; non‐employee P
Cell phone purchase with the service plan billed through ACT A X
Book, CD, DVD A A P
Break room appliance & supplies A P
Break room large appliance & supplies P
Building repair & alteration X
Catering  P
Certifications & exam associated w/employment P
Charter - boat, bus, shuttle, plane, etc. P
Computer - desktop, laptop, peripheral A P
Controlled substance X
Copier X
Copy or print; on campus X
Copy or print; off campus A A A
Employee clothing /uniform A P
Equipment < $4999 without a signed agreement A P
Equipment  > $4999 P
Equipment repair on equipment not owned by UCSD P
Flower Arrangement: décor for University function E P
Flower Arrangement: recognition and sympathy P
Gasoline - personal vehicle P
Gasoline - UC vehicle E X
Gifts - employee P
Gifts - non employee P
Honorarium - speaker or lecturer P
Independent Contractor & Consultant P

Insurance premium or payment

International purchase with duty papers P
International purchase without duty papers A P
License - professional P
Maintenance service agreement P
Marketing or promotional material A P
Membership dues - professional or technical organization P A
Moving service - office or lab X
Office furniture & accessories A P
Permit P
Postage X
Postage - off campus E
Precious metal P
Programmatic event or expense (also see in Travel & Entertainment) E
Radioactive material P
Registration - conference or seminar without travel P
Reprint P
Research Participant compensation (clinical trials/human subject) A X
Scholarship or fellowship P
Service requiring a contract P
Shipping A X
Software; off the shelf & digital, no signed license agreement A P
Software; requiring signed license agreement A P
Sponsorship P
Subscription, professional & technical  print or online; - journal, periodical, magazine or newspaper P A
Supplies - instructional, office, classroom, custodial, or landscaping A E P
Temporary labor staffing X
Vehicle lease or purchase P
Visa® gift cards X
Visa –international employee travel A A

Travel & Entertainment


Travel & Entertainment Payment
Travel Card Connexxus MyTravel MyPayments MyPayments (Events Payment Type) Marketplace

Alcoholic beverage

X X iRequest for catering


X X iRequest for catering
Conference meeting room booked at a hotel with audio visual and/or presentation equipment for University hosted events (does not include catering)   X
Conference meeting room booked at a hotel with audio visual and/or presentation equipment for University hosted events (does include catering and guests do not pay a fee to attend) X X iRequest for catering
Conference meeting room booked at a hotel with audio visual and/or presentation equipment for University hosted events (does include catering and guest pay a fee to participate) X
Employee Move/Relocation expense - moving company X
Employee Move/Relocation expense - reimbursement
Entertainment - meals, refreshments X   X
Entertainment - non-food supplies (paper goods, plastic ware)   X
Entertainment - performer X



Entertainment - wait staff, chef, bartender X X iRequest for catering
Meeting food & beverage; staff, student, faculty, guest X X iRequest for catering
Mileage - including parking and tolls X X Optional if parking only
Programmatic event or expense X X
Registration* - conference or seminar with or w/o travel X X
Travel expenses; airfare,  hotel, rental car, meals and ground transportation X X X
Visa – international employee travel X X

*Registration may be paid with an Express Card only when:

  • No additional travel expenses will be incurred (ie, parking, mileage, etc)
  • The attendee is a non-UCSD employee and the registration can only be paid online

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Note: This page has a friendly link that's easy to remember: http://blink.ucsd.edu/go/marketplace