Frequently Asked Questions
1. Q: How often are new per diem rates
A: The Office of Allowances
issues updated per diem rates once a month, effective the first of each month.
2. Q: How often are per
diem rates reviewed to reflect exchange rate changes?
A: All per diem rates
denominated in a foreign currency are reviewed monthly for the impact of exchange
rate fluctuations. Incremental exchange
rate adjustments are not made when a country is experiencing hyperinflation.
3. Q: When will a new
per diem survey take effect?
A: In order to analyze and
publish new per diem rates, post must submit surveys via eAllowances no
later than the 10th of the month (opening of business Washington, D.C.
time). If the 10th of the month falls on a weekend or holiday, post must
submit surveys by open of business on the last Washington working day before
4. Q: How often should
post review per diem rates?
A: Office of Allowances
recommends that posts check the rates at least once a year.
5. Q: There is an
upcoming POTUS visits, summit, major conference, or other event that will cause
hotel costs to increase above the per diem rate, what should we do?
A: POTUS visits, summits,
major conferences and other events can quickly make the "normal"
published rate obsolete, even if only for a very short period of time. The
simplest route is to ensure travelers are authorized "actual
expenses" at up to 300% of the published per diem rate per 14 FAM 576.2-2 or FTR 301-11.303.
Sometimes even that is not adequate. In such cases, Allowances can make a short
term change to per diem rates. To do this, communicate early in the planning
process with Allowances Team Supervisor covering
your region. You'll need to start by providing the reason for a short term
adjustment; later, you'll need to submit via eAllowances the special cost data
in the timeline outlined in FAQ 3.
6. Q: What if a location
doesn't have a per diem rate but USG employees travel there?
A: If there are other sites
where USG employees travel relatively frequently, but that are not listed in
eAllowances as separate locations, the lead agency at the nearest post should
collect and submit survey data for those locations. To determine lead agency go
to Allowances by Location,
select the applicable country and select "View" under Reporting
Schedule. Until a per diem rate is established for that location you should use
the per diem rate listed as "Other".
7. Q: What documentation is required to support reported
lodging and meal costs?
A: Per DSSR 074.4 the
following documentation MUST be submitted with the Hotel and Restaurant Survey
(DS-2026) or explanations included in either the DS-2026 Comments sections or
on the cover memo:
a. Submit hotel reservation logs supporting
b. Submit menus (in English) for all
restaurants, fast food establishments and cafeterias reported
c. Explain changes in hotels and/or restaurants
d. Explain significant increases in hotel and/or
e. Explain all prices reported in U.S. Dollars
f. If applicable, explain new seasonal hotel
g. If applicable, explain why there is not a
discounted hotel rate for USG travelers
h. Report when hotel rates include one or more
i. State whether taxes and/or service charges
are already included in reported meal costs
j. State whether taxes and/or service charges
are already included in reported hotel costs
k. Submit a statement from the postís security
and/or medical officer when it is necessary to report hotel restaurants instead
of local market establishments
l. Submit a statement from the postís security
and/or medical officer when it is necessary to report superior/deluxe hotels
normally reserved for VIPs or Congressional delegations instead of moderately
priced adequate hotels
m. Submit a cover memo signed by the officer
responsible for preparing the DS-2026
Last updated 5/4/2022