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REVENUE MEMORANDUM CIRCULAR NO. 86-2019 issued on August 23, 2019 publishes the full text of Department Order No. 049-2019 issued by the Secretary of the Department of Finance (DOF) entitled “Revised Travel Guidelines for Officials and Employees as Contained in the DOF’s Officials and Employees’ Travel Guide”.

DOF officials, Heads of DOF-attached bureaus/agencies, and organic employees of the DOF and attached bureaus/agencies may be authorized to travel in an official capacity.

Authority to travel may be granted in case of necessity for non-organic employees, such as consultants of, and/or those engaged by way of contract of service by, government agencies, except in highly meritorious circumstances (e.g., unavailability of qualified employees in highly technical or specialized fields), provided it is stipulated in their contract/s and upon written justification submitted to the authorized approving officials to travel in the exigency of public service.

Personal travel may be undertaken by any government employee provided all documentary requirements have been submitted and all procedures have been complied with. The management reserves the right to decline requests for personal travel if the schedule is deemed in conflict with a significant official undertaking.

All travel applications pertaining to official travels shall be submitted to the DOF at least ten (10) working days or more prior to the date of departure. Non-compliance therewith may be considered as a ground for disapproval of the request.

Priority should always be given to attendance and participation in activities directly related to the strategic priorities of the DOF (e.g. Congressional hearings, meetings with the President, etc. by concerned authorities over other meetings and all travels).

DOF officials who represent the Philippines or the DOF as members of Philippine delegations to international conferences, conventions, special missions, Technical Working Group meetings or the like, where officials are supposed to present an official position, are required to clear with the Secretary the official positions to be taken during said events on various critical issues.

No petty cash fund for miscellaneous expenses granted for specific purposes shall be utilized for travelling expenses. No cash advances shall be granted to any official or employee unless and until proper liquidation of cash advance for previous travel has been made or the same is first settled in accordance with the periods prescribed under Section 22 of Executive Order (EO) No. 77. Neither shall reimbursement of travel expenses be allowed until the claimant’s full liquidation of previous cash advances nor shall it be allowed beyond the fiscal year of the travel period. Liquidation of cash advances beyond the prescribed period may be
considered as a ground for denial of the travel request. No foreign travels with government funding shall be allowed for those who have not liquidated their expenses for previous government-funded travels abroad.

Travel applications for group delegation shall be consolidated and only one travel authority shall be issued. The approving authority reserves the right to disapprove the application for authority to travel of members of a delegation if it is evident from the travel application or proposal that he/she does not have a key role in the delegation or if the number of delegation members will prejudice the regular operations of the office.

The Secretary may authorize, subject to availability of funds, officials’ and employees’ claim for reimbursement of actual travel expenses incurred in the course of official local travel under Section 5(d) of EO No. 77.

Certification or affidavit of loss shall not be considered as appropriate replacement for the required airplane, ship or bus fare, boarding pass, terminal fees, hotel or lodging bills and receipts. No portion of the actual cost of travel expenses allowed shall cover the expenses of any of the staff accompanying an official and the expenses incurred for representation.

Any official and/or employee whose travel period is extended due to sickness shall not be entitled to reimbursement of actual expenses incurred from the onset of ailment up to the time of recovery inasmuch as no government service has been rendered, unless the illness was contracted in the course of the performance of his/her duty in the field as established by supporting medical documents.

Any official and/or employee whose travel period is cancelled or extended due to fortuitous event and/or directives of the Secretary and/or Head of the Agency shall be entitled to reimbursement of actual expenses incurred during his/her stay in the temporary station.

DOF officials who represent the Philippines or the DOF as members of Philippine delegations to international conferences or meetings, or who undertake official missions or assignments in the exigency of service with prior approval of the authorities listed under Section 10(a) of EO No. 77 may be allowed reimbursement of actual reasonable representation expenses that may be incurred not exceeding the rates prescribed under Section 16(a) of EO No. 77 when justified by circumstances and in conformity with the generally accepted customs, usages and practices, provided there expenses are duly supported by bills or receipts.

A Post-Travel Report for official travels shall be submitted within thirty (30) days after returning to the permanent official station. The contents of said Report are specified in the Order.

In case of participation in an international conference or convention abroad in which the Philippines is represented by a delegation, a report of the delegation shall be submitted to the President of the Philippines through the department head concerned, copy furnished the Department of Foreign Affairs, not later than thirty (30) days after the closing of the conference or convention. Any member of the delegation may also submit a supplementary report.

Violation of the foregoing rules on the submission of reportorial requirements shall subject the officials or employees concerned to disciplinary action.

The guidelines for personal travels and travel of Group Delegation are specified in the Officials and Employees Travel Guide of the DOF, which forms part of the Circular as Annexes.