Conference Lodging Allowance
Frequently Asked Questions
Updated: 08 September 2015
- What is the lodging per diem allowance when attending a conference?
- What if the lodging rate for a conference exceeds the maximum locality lodging ceiling rate?
- Does the AEA rate apply to the locality M&IE rate?
- What were the conference lodging rules prior to 1 January 2014?
- Are there additional JTR authorities for a special needs traveler required to attend a conference?
1. What is the lodging per diem allowance when attending a conference?
The lodging allowance is limited to the maximum locality lodging ceiling rate, where the conference is being held, regardless of the rates established during conference planning (effective 1 January 2014). See GSA FTR Amendment 2013-01 for more information.
2. What if the lodging rate for the conference exceeds the maximum locality lodging ceiling rate?
The traveler should seek other lodging, within the conference lodging location area, using the contracted CTO/TMC of the respective organization.
If the contracted CTO/TMC cannot find suitable lodging within the maximum locality lodging rate, the traveler may submit an AEA request to the designated Service/DoD Agency authority that authorizes the conference attendance. AEA is a discretionary allowance that is subject to the organization decision made in the Gov’t’s interest (never for personal convenience) IAW JTR, par. 4320.
3. Does the AEA rate apply to the locality M&IE rate?
AEA, for M&IE, may apply as a rare exception to Service/DoD Agency policy, IAW JTR, Ch 4, Part C. AEA is intended for unavoidable excess per diem costs during official TDY travel. TDY travel planned in a timely manner usually eliminates AEA use.
4. What were the previous conference lodging rules prior to 1 January 2014?
The conference lodging allowance (CLA) rule and AEA were the per diem allowance options that were available to the Service/DoD Agency before 1 January 2014. See Q1 for CLA elimination. TDY travel that starts prior to 1 January 2014 may be reimbursed at 125% of the maximum locality lodging rate until the TDY is terminated, when authorized/approved by the Service/DoD Agency.
5. Are there additional JTR authorities for a disabled or special needs traveler required to attend a conference?
JTR, par. 7815 does allow additional allowances for an eligible special needs civilian traveler who is validated as such by the Service/DoD Agency reasonable accommodation policy. Additional allowances may range from accompanied escort to dietary concerns, subject to the verification by the organization.