Policy: 201.D Vehicle Rental and Gas

Statement of Policy

A rental vehicle may be used when it is the most cost-effective means of transportation available for UW business. The vehicle rented should be reasonable in terms of size and type, depending on the number of passengers and/or cargo being transported.  In order to ensure secondary insurance coverage by the university, all UW-Madison employees, students and authorized agents of the university must be approved by UW-Madison Risk Management prior to operating a vehicle for university business, regardless of whether a personal, Fleet, DOA or rental vehicle is used.  Non-employee drivers need only be authorized if they intend to use a Fleet/DOA vehicle.

Note: UW – Madison Facilities Planning and Management’s Fleet Vehicles should be used when practical and available.

Contract Vendors

The University has two vehicle rental contracts which travelers are required to use whenever possible.  If it is necessary to rent a vehicle from a non-contract vendor (e.g. no contract vendor is available at a location, the contract vendor at the location does not have vehicles available), the traveler will be reimbursed provided he/she includes justification for the non-contract purchase with their reimbursement request.  Full contract details can be found at UWTravelWIse under “Discounts.”

  • Big Ten Contracts:  Use of the National and Enterprise Big Ten contracts is required for UW employees, graduate students, guests and consultants over 21 years of age traveling on University paid business.  All authorized University employees may use the contract for personal use, including insurance coverage.
  • State of Wisconsin/WSCA contractsThese secondary contracts are to be used by authorized student drivers traveling on University funded business.  Hertz, through WSCA, is also available within the Concur booking tool.

Booking Methods

  • Concur: The contract booking tool is accessible through UW TravelWIse.  Contract vehicle rental rates are automatically applied when reservations are made in  Concur. 
  • Fox World Travel: Travelers can contact Fox World Travel directly at
    Toll-Free: 866-230-8787 or 920-230-6467 to reserve a vehicle. Contract vehicle rental rates are automatically applied when reservations are made through Fox World Travel.
  •  Contract Car Rental Agencies: Travelers must reference the UW contract codes available within UW TravelWIse under “Discounts/Contract Car Rentals” when booking online or via phone directly with the rental agency.

Note: Orbitz is not in compliance with State of Wisconsin sales tax collection requirements and must not be used for booking business-related travel.

Payment Methods

Whenever possible, travelers should utilize university purchasing cards or the personal-liability My Corporate Card to pay for UW-Madison business-related vehicle rentals.  The purchasing card may also be used to pay for gasoline for rental vehicles.

Receipt/Documentation Requirements

Note:  Required documentation should be retained in the payment mechanism files.  When entering University Prepaid Expenses in e-Reimbursement, an additional copy of the expense receipt is not required in the receipt packet.

Vehicle Rental: Include the original vehicle rental agreement. The receipt must indicate the following:

  • Traveler’s name
  • Rental date(s)
  • Vendor name
  • Amount paid
  • Form of payment

Vehicle Classes: If a vehicle larger than the Standard/Intermediate class is required, justification must be provided for payment/reimbursement (e.g. three or more passengers, bulky equipment). When determining the number of passengers, only individuals traveling on State/UW business are included in the count. View the Car Rental Industry Codes to determine the type/size of vehicle and additional services rendered, that are typically coded on the car rental agency agreements and/or receipts.

Gasoline:  All Purchasing Travel Card gasoline purchases, regardless of the amount, and all gasoline purchases greater than $25 made with personal funds, must be supported by a receipt.


The contract vendor rates typically include collision damage waiver (CDW) and liability insurance for most rentals. Travelers should verify that the State/UW's contract ID number is referenced on the rental agreement to ensure contract coverage.  If the contract vendor does not provide insurance, or it is necessary to rent from a non-contract vendor, collision damage waiver and liability insurance must be purchased and will be reimbursed.  Any additional insurance coverage is considered a personal expense. Questions involving insurance should be directed to the UW - Madison Risk Management Office.

Fueling a Rental Vehicle

The traveler is responsible for fueling the rental vehicle before returning it to the vendor.  If the traveler fails to return the vehicle with a full tank of fuel, the cost of the vendor refueling the vehicle will not be paid or reimbursed by the university unless unusual circumstances outside of the traveler’s control prevented the individual from adhering to this requirement.

Other Equipment and Services

Other equipment and services (e.g. GPS, roadside assistance protection) are not contracted for and will not be paid or reimbursed by the University unless there is an exception granted by the traveler’s Divisional Business Office.


Travelers and departmental staff should contact their respective Divisional Business Office for policy or procedural questions.

Divisional Business Offices may contact uwtravel@bussvc.wisc.edu with questions.