Department of Commerce

Travel allowance for phone calls home

Travel regulations allow employees to claim phone calls home, not to exceed $6 per lodging night. There was a day when this allowance made sense, but that time has passed. The majority of higher ranking federal government employees carry a government issued cell phone (blackberry, etc.). And almost all employees carry personal cell phones. They are not paying any additional expense to call home whle traveling. It's not like it used to be, when calls home were made from hotel rooms, with overpriced hotel charges for those calls. I think that the government would save a fortune, if the travel regulations for phone calls could be amended to allow phone calls only in cases where the traveler has no cell phone (personal or government issued) If they have to charge the call to their hotel room, they would be required to provide a receipt showing the actual cost of the phone calls.

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Idea No. 9018