I work in the IT field and I just started working at a new company. One of the requirements of the job (which I view as a positive benefit) is to travel around the world handling client migrations.
The amount of travel was made clear during the interview process. What was not brought up was that I would be responsible for handling my own travel arrangements including the upfront cost of travel and lodging expenses. Travel is 25% of the job, and includes mostly traveling to the other side of the world for a week or two at a time. A plane ticket will be around $3000-$4000 and a week's worth of lodging around $1500. I was told that expenses checks usually come within a week after being submitted.
This was brought up as a side note that it was the way they did things and that was it. My issue, is that it is A LOT of money for me to front, plus I don't have any credit cards (nor do I want to get one). Also, I feel with the money I make, that they could justify me having to pay it upfront. This was a big career move for me, and now I am worried.
Is it normal for a company to have these requirements? If so, what should I do if I simply cannot afford it?
( 6 months ago )
It's not necessarily "normal" to handle travel expenses this way, but not unheard of either. I've been with companies who managed all travel arrangements internally, companies which provided an internal self-service interface that employees could use to arrange their own travel (restricted to preferred providers/companies, etc.), and companies which had employees arrange travel themselves and then provided reimbursement after the fact.
As much as you may not want to, the best way to deal with your current situation is to get a credit card with a limit high enough to cover your anticipated costs (or AMEX charge card). Submit your reimbursement claims promptly, and pay the balance off in full each month. Try to get a card that earns points when you use it; you'll rack up a ton.