DTMO provides oversight of the Department's Restricted Fares policy. DoD policy states that "Contract city pair airfares (and other airfares limited to official GOV'T business) provide savings to the GOV'T. However, there are circumstances when restricted airfare available to the general public should be authorized when the cost savings outweighs any risk of trip cancellation or itinerary changes" (See JTR, par. 3500, B1).
When a city pair fare is available, the Authorizing Official must use the decision support tool available in Joint Travel Regulations (JTR) Appendix H, otherwise known as the Restricted Airfare checklist, to assist in determining if a restricted airfare is advantageous to the Government.
When a city pair fare is NOT available, the traveler and Authorizing Officials must consider (1) the chance that the flight will be changed or canceled, and (2) applicable charges and fees that may be incurred, when determining if the savings is worth the risk that the trip will change. Use of the Restricted Airfare checklist is not required, but travelers must follow their Service or Agency guidelines for using restricted tickets.
Important items to note about the use of restricted fares:
- Authorization for use when a city pair fare is not available must be obtained on a case-by-case basis. Blanket authorization and justification for use of restricted fares is prohibited.
- If a restricted airfare is approved, the funding command accepts total responsibility for the restricted airfare ticket should the trip be changed or cancelled for any official reason.
- Restricted airfares must be purchased through the TMC and paid for with a GTCC. Restricted airfares may not be purchased through on-line booking services.
- If approval is given for use of a restricted airfare, the traveler must contact the TMC to have the ticket issued; DTS does not do this automatically upon Approving Official approval.
- Both travelers and Authorizing Officials should be aware of the fare rules and shortened ticketing timelines. Typically, restricted airfares require approval within 24 hours or less, are not transferable if cancelled, and can have specifics on when a cancelled ticket must be rebooked.