At a time when every agency is feeling the effect of tightening budgets, GSA is helping our federal partners cut their travel costs through our travel programs like SmartPay, City Pairs, FedRooms, and our per diem reimbursement rates for official travel. This past year GSA helped the federal government save billions of taxpayer dollars on travel, and in 2014 we’re expecting to save even more. GSA’s programs allow agencies to serve the American people performing the tasks necessary to complete their missions.
Since the beginning of 2013 federal agencies have already lowered their travel spending by approximately $2 billion, and the federal government is bringing travel costs down to 30 percent below 2010 levels in response to the May 2012 Office of Management and Budget directive on efficient spending.
Federal employees occasionally travel to fulfill responsibilities that range from inspecting airplanes to ensure passenger safety, to performing criminal investigations that span across multiple jurisdictions, and to assisting victims of natural disasters. For many public servants, travel is a necessary part of their jobs, and GSA provides the tools to ensure the federal agencies can travel efficiently and effectively.
SmartPay – Leveraging the GSA SmartPay program allows agencies to get the most out of travel budgets, streamline the payment processes, and earn refunds that can be used to support their missions. The purchase card program helps the federal government pay for official travel, supplies, and services. Last year, federal agencies saved $1.6 billion by using their SmartPay cards while traveling.
City Pairs – Our City Pair Program is the largest managed airline program in the world, offering significantly discounted airfares for federal government travelers and saves agencies an estimated $2.2 billion annually in airline fares. The City Pair Program provides benefits not available in any commercial program, including: no restrictions; last seat availability; no change or cancellation fees; no blackout periods.
Per Diem Rates – Every year, we set the per diem rates for the federal government based on local market costs and set caps on costs that can be reimbursed to federal employees on lodging and meals while on official travel. We also provide agencies with the policies and tools needed to reduce costs.
FedRooms GSA’s FedRooms program offers 12,500+ hotels worldwide with rates that are at or below per diem with no additional fees. FedRoom bookings are flexible and can be canceled by 4:00pm day of arrival without cancellation fees.
E-Gov Travel Service (ETS) – ETS is the backbone of GSA’s governmentwide managed travel programs, allowing users to easily book travel and efficiently track spending, approvals, and vouchers. The next generation ETS2 will build upon the successes of the original service. It will help the government consolidate online travel booking services and expense management platforms to increase efficiency, transparency, accountability and save taxpayer dollars. New capabilities such as mobile apps are featured. ETS saves the government more than $20 million dollars annually.
GSA’s ongoing commitment to deliver the best value to our customers is a critical part of our mission. Through these programs, we ensure that the federal government saves taxpayer money and uses their resources efficiently.