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Questions and Answers about the American Express
Corporate Travel Card Program




General Information Questions

  1. Who is eligible to apply for the Corporate Travel Card?
  2. Why is it important to use the Corporate Travel Card when I travel?
  3. Is there an annual fee for the Corporate Travel Card?
  4. Are there spending limits of any kind?
  5. Why is the retail limit only $500?
  6. What if I need to exceed the retail or credit limit on my card?
  7. May I use my American Express for personal purchases?
  8. May I use my card if my travel is MSU business-related but not entirely reimbursed by MSU or includes some personal travel?
  9. Why does Michigan State University appear on the front of the card?
  10. Is the Corporate Travel Card program in any way associated with MSU's procurement card program?
  11. Am I allowed to retain my corporate card after I leave MSU employment?
  12. Will I build a credit history by utilizing the Corporate Travel Card?

Applying for the Corporate Travel Card Questions

  1. How do I apply for a Corporate Travel Card?
  2. How long will it take to obtain my card after I have applied and been approved?
  3. Is my account ready to use when I receive my card?
  4. May I choose to have my credit card and statements mailed to my MSU office address?
  5. How are credit cards sent? When are replacement cards sent?

Corporate Travel Card Program Benefits Questions

  1. What are some of the cardholder benefits?
  2. Does the American Express provide car rental insurance coverage?
  3. What if I wish to buy my airline tickets well in advance of travel and don't want to charge the purchase to my Corporate Travel Card?
  4. Is there travel accident insurance coverage?
  5. Can I designate a beneficiary for the travel accident insurance?
  6. Does the card provide lost or damaged luggage protection?
  7. Will American Express offer a "Membership Miles" program?
  8. How does the new card affect my membership in car rental clubs such as Emerald Club or existing profiles with travel agencies?

ATM Transaction Questions

  1. Can I access cash through my Corporate Travel Card?
  2. Is there a limit to the frequency with which I can obtain cash?
  3. How do I obtain a cash advance through an ATM?
  4. How do I find the location of a bank or ATM?
  5. What if I need more cash than the monthly limit?
  6. What are the charges relating to the access of cash?

Payments and Reimbursement Questions

  1. Who is responsible for paying my American Express card bill?
  2. How can I pay my monthly bill?
  3. What is the closing date on my statement?
  4. Should I wait for the American Express bill to submit my travel expense report?
  5. Is it important to reconcile my statement each month?
  6. What late fees and penalties will be assessed?
  7. Are delinquency fees and penalties reimbursable?
  8. Will my American Express Card affect my personal credit rating?
  9. What if I do not recognize a charge or need more information about a charge on my statement?

Use of the Corporate Travel Card Questions

  1. How are exchange rates/currency conversion fees determined for international travel?
  2. What happens once I have notified American Express of a dispute?
  3. What if my American Express card is lost or stolen?
  4. Will a charge ever be rejected by a merchant and what should I do if that occurs?
  5. What if I have a business need for a higher limit?

Contact Information Questions

  1. Who should I contact with additional questions about the Corporate Card program?

General Information Questions and Answers

  1. Q: Who is eligible to apply for the Corporate Travel Card?

    A: Regular faculty and staff on the MSU payroll are eligible. However, because the corporate travel card is intended for business travel and retail purchases made while in travel status, employees who do not incur business travel expenses should not obtain a card.

  2. Q: Why is it important to use the Corporate Travel Card when I travel?

    A: American Express offers Michigan State University travelers some benefits that their own credit cards may not. The following highlight the most important of those.

    ACCEPTANCE - American Express is accepted in over 130 countries world-wide.

    ATM CASH ADVANCE - The American Express offers cash withdrawals at over 600,000 ATMS worldwide.

    ENHANCED TRAVEL INSURANCE - Primary collision and loss damage insurance on car rentals and increased travel accident insurance coverage are included with use of the American Express.

    TECHNOLOGY - American Express has state-of-the-art payment systems and reporting capabilities. If cardholders need a copy of their statement, they can log onto Netservice: www.netserviceaccess.com (free of charge) and/or they can contact us at the same number they do today: Call toll free in the U.S.: 1-800-359-9227.

    GLOBAL ASSIST HOTLINE - Sometimes the unexpected happens when you travel on business. A passport is lost. You come down with a sudden illness. A lawyer is needed. Being a Cardmember can make things easier to handle. The Global Assist(r) Hotline helps you prepare for your trip with customs information and destination guides. And when you're more than 100 miles from home, you can rely on our Global Assist Hotline in the event of an emergency, including lost passport replacement assistance, translation services, lost luggage assistance, and emergency legal and medical referrals.

    Additional Details:

    • Emergency hotel check-in/out, Cash Wire service.
    • Medical information and monitoring, prescription replacement, doctor referrals.
    • English-speaking lawyers, embassy and consulate referrals, and customs/passport/visa information.
    • Online destination guides that include weather reports, exchange rates, and more.

    The Global Assist Hotline is available 24 hours a day from anywhere in the world. Call toll free in the U.S.: 1-800-554-AMEX (2639). Call collect from abroad: 715-343-7977.

  3. Q: Is there an annual fee for the corporate travel card?

    A: There is no annual fee associated with the card.

  4. Q: Are there spending limits of any kind?

    A: The maximum credit limit on each card is $15,000. Retail purchases, which are limited to those made while in MSU business travel status, has a spending limit of $500 per month. Card holders may also obtain up to $200 per month in ATM cash advances.

  5. Q: Why is the retail limit only $500?

    A: Because the corporate travel card is meant to be used for business travel and entertainment, it is unlikely that travelers should have to make retail (non travel-related) purchases totaling more than $500 per month. In addition, this serves to protect the card member in the event that the card is stolen.

  6. Q: What if I need to exceed the retail or credit limit on my card?

    A: Your MSU program administrator has the capability, where warranted, to change authorized limits on your application. Requests for authorization should be made in advance of the trip, whenever possible. Note: This will not be routinely done. Provision of a compelling rationale will be necessary to increase a limit.

  7. Q: May I use my Corporate Travel Card for personal purchases?

    A: The American Express card is an employee benefit designed to ease the travel burden for employees, eliminate travel advances and, from report driven spending information, enable MSU to negotiate favorable contracts with other travel vendors. Accordingly, it is to be used for MSU business travel or MSU business entertainment. The American Express card may not be used for personal travel or personal retail expenditures.

  8. Q: May I use my card if my travel is MSU business-related but not entirely reimbursed by MSU or includes some personal travel?

    A: Yes.

  9. Q: Why does Michigan State University appear on the front of the card?

    A: Michigan State University chose to have its name on the card to provide name recognition and emphasize that the card is to be used for all business related travel. In addition, the MSU presence on the card will help with employee identification to enhance the ability to obtain travel related discounts negotiated by MSU and the Big 10.

  10. Q: Is the American Express Corporate Travel Card program in any way associated with MSU's procurement card program?

    A: MSU's procurement card and the American Express Corporate Travel Card are two separate and unique products and programs. The procurement card is designed for purchase of products and non-travel related services and is billed directly to Michigan State University. The American Express Corporate Travel Card is designed for MSU business travel expenses and the card member is billed monthly.

  11. Q: Am I allowed to retain my corporate card after I leave MSU employment?

    A: No. It is your responsibility to cut up and return your card to American Express or to your MSU program administrator before you terminate employment. An exception to this policy may be granted to employees who have been given official emeritus status.

  12. Q: Will I build a credit history by utilizing the Corporate Travel Card?

    A: No. No credit history will be reported.


Applying for the Corporate Travel Card Questions and Answers

  1. Q: How do I apply for a Corporate Travel Card?

    A: An application is available on this website and is completed electronically. You will want to follow the Corporate Travel Card Instructions for Michigan State University Applicants. The application must be completed and routed to the Department/Unit Authorizer or Authorized Account Signer for your department. Once approved by your department, the application will be forwarded to Michigan State University’s Program Administrator for employment verification, approval and submission to American Express.

  2. Q: How long will it take to obtain my card after I have applied and been approved?

    A: Once American Express receives your application for a Corporate Travel Card, your credit card is sent to your home address within approximately 7 to 10 calendar days. Applicants who need their card on a "rush" basis (this generally takes 2 days) will be assessed a $35.00 charge on their first statement.

  3. Q: Is my account ready to use when I receive my card?

    A: No. You will need to call American Express Customer Service to activate your card. Their toll free telephone number is on your new American Express card when you receive it. You can begin using your new Corporate Travel Card after activating your account.

  4. Q: May I choose to have my credit card and statements mailed to my MSU office address?

    A: Yes. Use the following format on your Corporate Travel Card application after selecting Business Address:

    Business Name/Mail Stop: YOUR BUILDING NAME
    Street Address/ Apt #: STREET ADDRESS, ROOM #
    City: EAST LANSING
    State: MI
    Zip: 48824
  5. Q: How are credit cards sent? When are replacement cards sent?

    A: American Express mails credit cards in a plain, white, windowed envelope to the address indicated on the credit card application. If application is rushed, credit card is 2-day shipped to cardholder.

    If having mailed to campus, be sure to follow MSU addressing requirements outlined in #4.

    Replacement cards are mailed in a plain, white, windowed envelope to the cardholder’s address approximately 1 month prior to expiration.


Corporate Travel Card Program Benefits Questions and Answers

  1. Q: What are some of the card member benefits?

    A: Michigan State University card member benefits include: 24-hour emergency card replacement, automatic travel accident coverage, excess baggage insurance, full value primary auto collision/loss damage insurance and personal effects coverage, access to cash at ATM machines worldwide, 24-hour roadside assistance, and travel medical protection. For further information, please refer to the American Express brochure that will be mailed with your Corporate Travel Card.

  2. Q: Does the American Express provide car rental insurance coverage?

    A: American Express Rental Insurance Coverage provides Michigan State University card members with primary Collision and Loss Damage Insurance when renting a car for 31 days or less. For details on benefits, refer to the American Express Corporate Travel Card Guide mailed to each card member with their Corporate Travel Card. Note: MSU also has primary collision and loss damage insurance with its National Car Rental agreement for most domestic rentals and some foreign rentals. If it should be necessary to rent for business reasons from a non-contract vendor, payment with your American Express is recommended, as it will negate the need to purchase collision and loss damage insurance.

  3. Q: What if I wish to buy my airline tickets well in advance of travel and don't want to charge the purchase to my Corporate Travel Card?

    A: Michigan State University reimbursed business travelers may contact one of the University’s Preferred Travel Agencies up to 120 days in advance of their departure date and direct bill airfare. The cost of the ticket will be charged directly to your MSU account number (s), not to your corporate card.

  4. Q: Is there travel accident insurance coverage?

    A: American Express card members are insured automatically against accidental death and dismemberment that result from transportation on common carriers purchased with your credit card. Your coverage is automatic when your airfare on a common carrier is charged to your card.

  5. Q: Can I designate a beneficiary for the travel accident insurance?

    A: No. Benefits are paid to the first surviving of your spouse, children, parents, siblings or to your estate.

  6. Q: Does the card provide lost or damaged luggage protection?

    A: American Express provides $5,000 lost/damaged secondary coverage when your airfare on a common carrier is charged to your American Express Corporate Travel Card.

  7. Q: Will American Express offer a "Membership Miles" program?

    A: No. Michigan State University has elected not to participate in the membership miles program. The Annual Fee American Express charges for membership miles programs could not be waived.

  8. Q: How does the new card affect my membership in car rental clubs such as National's Emerald Club or existing direct bill profiles with travel agencies?

    A: You will need to update your records with those entities so their files indicate your Corporate Travel Card number as your payment mechanism. Your membership numbers and privileges will not be affected.


ATM Transaction Questions and Answers

  1. Q: Can I access cash through my American Express?

    A: If your company participates in the Corporate Express Cash program, you can use the Corporate Card for cash access at over 600,000 Express Cash ATMs around the world. To find out if your company participates, contact your program administrator.

  2. Q: Is there a limit to the frequency with which I can obtain cash?

    A: Michigan State University card members may obtain up to $200 per month. ATM access is limited to a total of $200 during a one-month period starting and ending on the 25th of each month. Cash may also be obtained from an American Express member bank.

  3. Q: How do I obtain a cash advance through an ATM?

    A: American Express Corporate Travel Card holders will need a Personal Identification Number (PIN) to use an ATM. These numbers are issued by American Express Customer Service. To set up your personalized PIN, call for assistance at 1-800-359-9227.

  4. Q: How do I find the location of a bank or ATM?

    A: For more information, including the location of the nearest Express Cash ATM, call the Express Cash hotline below.

    Call toll free in the U.S.: 1-800-359-9227
    Call collect from abroad: 801-464-3232
    Or visit www.amexatms.com

  5. Q: What if I need more cash than the monthly limit?

    A: Because of the worldwide merchant acceptance of American Express, the need for cash advances is greatly reduced. However, your program administrator has the capability, where warranted, to temporarily increase the limit on a card. Requests for authorization should be made in advance of the trip, whenever possible. Note: This will not be routinely done. Provision of a compelling rationale will be necessary to increase a limit.

  6. Q: What are the charges relating to the access of cash?

    A: For ATM cash advances, American Express charges 2.5% and then each bank may charge an additional fee above the American Express fee. The charge will appear on the card member statement. To minimize the fees associated with cash advances, employees should only withdraw the anticipated cash needed for a business trip. Your American Express Corporate Travel Card should be used whenever possible for business charges.


Payments and Reimbursements Questions and Answers

  1. Q: Who is responsible for paying my American Express bill?

    A: All expenses incurred by the employee on his or her American Express are the responsibility of the employee. Michigan State University accepts no responsibility or liability for payment or collection of those charges.

  2. Q: How can I pay my monthly bill?

    A: American Express accepts checks and/or ACH payments. Card members can make payments via Netservice (free of charge), over the phone ($10.00 fee applies) and/or mail a check.

  3. Q: What is the closing date on my statement?

    A: Your account cycles on the 25th of each month at which time a statement is produced. The day may vary slightly if it falls on a weekend or holiday. You may view charges to your account any time via the internet at NetService.

  4. Q: Should I wait for the American Express bill to submit my Travel Voucher?

    A: No. Per Michigan State University policy, travel reimbursement requests are due within 30 days of the return date of your business trip. It is important that timely expense reports are submitted to ensure prompt reimbursement.

    Please Note: Your American Express statement is not acceptable documentation for reimbursable claims.

  5. Q: Is it important to reconcile my statement each month?

    A: Yes. Even though you may have been reimbursed for your business expenses, you should review your statement for accuracy. This will ensure that your account always remains in proper balance. If you have not received your statement, please contact American Express Customer Service at 800-MC-ASSIST.

  6. Q: What late fees and penalties will be assessed?

    A: Payment in full is due upon receipt of the billing. Accounts are considered past due 30 days after the statement date. American Express expects payment in full within 30 days of the billing cycle’s closing date. After 60 days past due, late fees are assessed at the rate of 2.5% of the balance plus $10 and charging privileges on your American Express Corporate Travel Card are suspended. Your account is irrevocably closed after 90 days past due.

  7. Q: Are delinquency fees and penalties reimbursable?

    A: It is the card member's responsibility to pay their monthly corporate card statement promptly. Late fees and penalties incurred by the card member are to be paid by the card member. If incurred, they are not the responsibility of nor are they reimbursable by Michigan State University.

  8. Q: Will my American Express card affect my personal credit rating?

    A: Non-payment of your account with American Express can be reported and affect your personal credit rating. In addition, individual account delinquency will directly impact Michigan State University’s overall program. Employees are strongly encouraged to maintain timely payment status.

  9. Q: What if I do not recognize a charge or need more information about a charge on my statement?

    A: Refer to the back of your statement for billing inquiries/problems or questions. American Express must hear from you no later than 60 days from the original statement date on which the charge in question appeared. Be sure to keep records of all discussions, including the name of the Customer Service Representative. If you have any questions or need further clarification, please contact American Express Customer Service.


Use of the Corporate Travel Card Questions and Answers

  1. Q: How are exchange rates/currency conversion fees determined for international travel?

    A: Currency exchanges are generally made using a government-mandated rate in effect the day the transaction is posted or wholesale market rate in effect the day before the transaction is processed. The Bank of Montreal daily provides American Express with an international money exchange blended rate which is then used by American Express to update exchange rates. The exchange rate is increased by 1% and that fee is included in the currency conversion.

  2. Q: What happens once I have notified American Express of a dispute?

    A: After American Express has received notification, American Express will "suspend" the amount in question. While American Express is conducting an investigation, you do not need to pay the amount of the charge which is in dispute; however, you are obligated to pay the entire balance of charges that are not in question.

  3. Q: What if my American Express Corporate Travel Card is lost or stolen?

    A: Immediately call American Express Customer Service at 1-800-359-9227, and a new account will be opened. No matter where you are, the Corporate Card Center will make sure travelers receive a temporary replacement card. A report will be filed and a new card with a new account number will be issued in approximately 7-10 days.

    If you need a lost Corporate Card replaced quickly, Corporate Card Customer Service will arrange to have a new one in your hands – usually by the next business day. The Card can be delivered to you overnight or held for you at the nearest American Express Travel Services location.

    Call toll free in the U.S.: 1-800-359-9227
    Call collect from abroad: 801-424-3232

  4. Q: Will a charge ever be rejected by a merchant and what should I do if that occurs?

    A: A charge may be rejected by a merchant for any number of reasons. Some of the most common reasons are: Purchase exceeds the retail limit of $500/month; the merchant, which is actually a hotel, is classified by their bank as a retail merchant.

    If your charge is rejected by a merchant, call American Express at 1-800-359-9227 domestically or call collect internationally to 1-801-464-3232. You can also call Michigan State University’s Program Administrator at 355-5000.

  5. Q: What if I have a business need for a higher limit?

    A: Limits can be increased on a card-by-card basis by your program administrator with proper justification.


Contact Information Questions and Answers

  1. Q: Who should I contact with additional questions about the Corporate Card program?

    A: If you have additional questions, comments and suggestions regarding the corporate card program, please contact the MSU Program Administrator at:

    MSU Travel Manager
    426 Auditorium Rd Rm 360
    East Lansing, MI 48824
    Phone: (517) 355-0343
    Fax: (517) 353-1706
    travel@ctlr.msu.edu

Michigan State University