Washington State University

Revised 6-12
Travel Services

Privately-Owned, Rented, or Chartered Aircraft

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When advantageous and economical to WSU, University employees may use privately-owned, rented or chartered aircraft to conduct official University business.


Rental: The vendor provides an airplane only. (This arrangement is also referred to as a dry charter.)

Charter: The vendor provides an airplane with a pilot.


The State Division of Aeronautics must review and approve an employee's credentials before he or she may pilot an aircraft for official state business. Likewise, specifications for any privately-owned aircraft used for official state business must be reviewed and approved by the State Division of Aeronautics. (SAAM 70.50.50)

Use a Request for Authorization to Pilot Aircraft form to request pilot and aircraft approval. Obtain the form from the State of Washington Division of Aeronautics; telephone 800-552-0666.

Request approval from the Division of Aeronautics (DOA) prior to the first flight in each biennium.

The Division of Aeronautics notifies the employee of the final decision. The employee is to route a copy of the approval documents to Travel Services.


The traveler must obtain written authorization on a Travel Authority for each trip involving a rented, chartered, or private aircraft. Blanket Travel Authorities are not approved.

Complete a Travel Authority following instructions in 95.05.

In addition to the information conventionally entered on the Travel Authority, enter:

NOTE: Aircraft must be obtained from a firm that is under state contract and has been approved by the State Department of Transportation. (SAAM 70.50.50) Contact Travel Services for information regarding state contract charter/rental firms.


Complete a Department Order (DO) to rent or charter an aircraft if the total cost is $10,000 or less. (See 70.07 for DO instructions.) If the total cost exceeds $10,000, complete a Departmental Requisition instead of a DO. (See 70.10 for Departmental Requisition instructions.) Reference the Travel Authority number on the DO or Departmental Requisition.

Fuel Expenses

Use a WSU gasoline credit card to make fuel purchases while on travel status. Use the departmental credit card if one has been assigned; otherwise obtain a card for temporary use by providing a copy of the Travel Authority to Purchasing Services. See 95.37.

Privately-Owned Aircraft

Route the approved Travel Authority directly to Travel Services in the Controller's Office.


Complete a Travel Expense Voucher to obtain reimbursement for expenses incurred using privately-owned aircraft on authorized business. See 95.20.

The reimbursement rate is the mileage rate per direct air mile. See 95.19 for the current aircraft mileage rate.


The state of Washington's self-insurance liability program excludes aircraft liability. As such, the state does not pay claims arising from the use of aircraft. When chartered, leased, rented, or privately owned aircraft are used for official University business, the aircraft owner is responsible for providing liability coverage.


Employees, while flying on authorized business are covered by Worker's Compensation and Medical Aid.

WSU employees may purchase optional life insurance and accidental death and dismemberment insurance as an employee benefit, which provides coverage in the event of an accident.

WSU does not provide nonscheduled aviation accidental death and dismemberment insurance coverage for employees flying in nonscheduled aircraft.