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Meetings and Entertainment: Meetings

Learn about meals and light refreshments for university business meetings.

Meetings that include UCSD-paid meals or light refreshments must serve a substantial business purpose and have at least one employee present.

Types, location, and purposes

Typically a meeting between UCSD employees is held on UCSD property rather than at a restaurant or residence. It would take place during work hours, however if that is impossible, a meeting might have to be held during lunchtime for example a working lunch in which case food/ beverage might be provided to participants.

Meetings can be between:

  • University employees on an infrequent basis if the meeting cannot be scheduled during regular, working hours
  • Faculty, staff, and students
  • Employees and other participants

A meeting must have an agenda which is the sole focus of the session. To be eligible for reimbursement, any food/ beverage must clearly be necessary and integral part of the meeting and serve one of the following purposes: 

  • Administrative, planning, workgroups
  • Planning, mentoring, workgroups (faculty, staff, and students)
  • Formal training sessions, conferences (not on travel status)
  • Professional association, scholarly society, external organization
  • UC-wide meetings, Academic Senate, Regents

Reimbursements and payments

Use MyPayments (login required) to claim expenses or request payments.


UC San Diego does not pay or reimburse frequent or routine expenditures for meals or light refreshments for employees, which are treated as taxable income by the IRS.

For meetings, limit the frequency of:

  • Meals to once per month, per group
  • Light refreshments to twice per month, per group


Meetings require approval by employees with delegated signature authorization. Some circumstances, such as exceeding per-person meal maximums, require special approval by either the vice chancellor or a designee. See approval routing guidelines.

Notice: UC San Diego policy for meetings, entertainment, and hosted events, as published in Blink, is decisive. It has been adapted to UC San Diego's organization, delegation of authority, terminology, chart of accounts, and processing applications. The source is UC Expenditures for Business Meetings, Entertainment, and Other Occasions.