The company will cover all work-related travel expenses. This includes lodging and meals during the part of the trip that is work-related. Depending on the distance of your travel, it can also include one day before and one day after the work related business. For example, if you are attending a 3 day conference in a jetlag-inducing location, the company will cover your lodging and meals those 3 days as well as one day before and one day after.
The company can accommodate custom requests. It is OK to stay longer on your trip. However, the extra days will not be covered by the company.
Understand that the guidelines of Spending Company Money, especially the part about spending it like it is your own money, still apply for all expenses.
Always bring a credit card with you when traveling for company business if you have one.
Hotels will generally expect you to have a physical credit card to present upon check-in. This credit card will be kept on file for the duration of your stay. Even if your lodging was pre-paid by the company or by using a company credit card, the Hotel may still require a card to be on file for "incidentals".
If you incur any work-travel related expenses (on your personal card or a GitLab company card), please make sure to save the original receipt.
When your trip is complete, please file an expense report via Expensify or include the receipts on your next monthly invoice.
Self Stay Incentive Policy
If you decide to stay with friends or family instead of a hotel / Airbnb for a business trip, the company will pay you 50% of what would have been the cost of a reasonable hotel. A reasonable hotel would be the negotiated hotel rate a conference provides. This is in keeping with our values of frugality and freedom, and intended to reward you for saving company money on accommodation expenses. Contractors should take a screenshot of a hotel search from the same location in NexTravel and submit this along with your expense report or invoice. Employees will be paid through payroll by submitting the screenshot by email to People Operations for processing.
Booking travel and lodging
Before booking any flights please ensure that you have the proper visas in place.
Setting up your NexTravel account
Below is some more information to help you get set up with your NexTravel account.
Follow the link in your onboarding issue to create your NexTravel account and set a secure password. (Contact People Ops if you need help finding the link).
Once you are in your dashboard, make sure to set up your info in your profile and the preferences tab (see link at top middle right corner of page).
Add your passport information to your profile (only passport information is accepted), this will populate your info directly when booking a flight.
Now let's start booking!
Booking travel through NexTravel
If you book through NexTravel, the costs will be added to the GitLab invoice and no credit card is needed.
Basic economy in NexTravel
Many airlines offer basic economy fares by default. This can create confusion and stress on the traveler if the conditions of their airline ticket aren't known.
To ensure a trouble-free experience with air travel booked through NexTravel:
Ahead of time, using the value in the CONFIRMATION field in a NexTravel trip entry, look up your flights with the airline's own website to ensure times and conditions are what you expect.
Check in using the airline's website (not NexTravel) as soon as check-in becomes available. This will make it clear ahead of time if checked baggage must be added to a flight at additional cost, and provide time to contact the airline in case of any other issues.
How to book
Please note that some budget airlines might not show, so, if you want that, make sure to check those to be sure there is no better option out there. (SouthWest, JetBlue, etc.).
Login to your account. If you've not yet set up your account, do this first.
The dashboard gives you the option to start a booking directly. The options are to book flights, hotels, or rental cars.
Input info for the flight you want to book. You can pick return as a combo or each leg separately
Select "continue to checkout" and fill out the reasons for booking.
Once confirming all details are correct you can select "complete booking" and the flight will go for approval to your manager
You can add a hotel or car by clicking the boxes between the flight details and "complete booking" and go through the same steps.
Note: Once a flight is booked, re-routing is at person’s own cost unless requested by the company or force majeure (in the latter case often the airline will cover the difference).
FAQ about travel
Please read through these FAQ entirely, before contacting travel@. They won't respond to these FAQ sent over email to them.
If you have trouble finding travel within a budget, contact your manager about this, not travel@
If your flight hasn't been approved, contact your manager, they are responsible, not travel@
If your flight does not have a seat selection or checked bags included, you need to arrange that with the airline. Usually done upon check-in online, 24H before your flight.
If part of your travel has been changed after you've booked, contact NexTravel Support about this, they can help.
Booking shows Out of Policy
Sometimes there is no way around booking a flight or hotel that is out of policy.
This means that the option selected is more expensive than the cheapest option + our buffer.
When you try to book this, an email will be sent to your manager for approval.
Please provide extensive reasoning to make approval easier and faster.
After 24 hours without any manual action (approved/denied) the booking will automatically be accepted.
GitLab offers travel insurance for business travel. Full details of GitLab's Business Travel Accident Policy can be found in the benefits section.
Booking accommodations through Airbnb
If you need an Airbnb for your stay on a business related trip, you can either book it yourself, or send a request to People Ops.
For People Ops, please include a link to which Airbnb you would like to stay in, the corresponding dates, and the purpose of your travel.
If you are booking the trip yourself, you may be reimbursed for the portion of your stay that was business related by submitting in Expensify or on your monthly invoice.
Tips on Working Remotely While Abroad
Working remotely while being abroad can be quite different. For example it can be harder to arrange good working internet and you may need extra tools to have a similar level of comfort to be able to work effectively.
Planning flights far in advance can help you get cheaper fares when booking. For example you can set alerts when there is a significant drop in price for your travel destination.
During your working travel your restricted data could be exposed. If you feel that your travel frequency may expose your data please keep in mind the following points to ensure that sensitive data contained in your devices will not be compromised:
VPN - If you are connecting from an untrusted network you should use a VPN connection to avoid MITM Attack or similar.
Devices in public places - If you are using your device in a public place someone could read restricted data from your screen, you should protect your screen with a special film that ensure your privacy, here you can find some samples
Speaking in crowded places - Ensure that when you are talking about restricted data you are in a secure place and no-one can hear you.
1Password travel mode - If you are approaching travel in a risky country or you have to leave your devices in an unsecure place, please use Travel Mode in 1Password to ensure that your vaults will be safe in case of device compromission.