2. Travel arrangements

NHMRC Business Services

P: 02 6217 9090

E: NHMRCtravel@nhmrc.gov.au

Booking travel

All NHMRC business related flights are booked and paid for by NHMRC through our travel management company, QBT Pty Ltd. This mandatory practice complies with Whole-of-Australian-Government (WoAG) travel arrangements. Under WoAG travel arrangements members must not book their own NHMRC business related travel. 

NHMRC is unable to make bookings for a member’s personal travel that may coincide with NHMRC business related travel. If a member requires travel to be booked to/from a location other than their home base, a cost assessment will be required in the first instance. Please discuss these requirements with your secretariat.

Confirmation of your travel booking together with the itinerary will be forwarded to you by NHMRC’s Business Services travel team prior to travel. To avoid disruptions to your booked travel, please check all details as soon as possible upon receipt of your email itinerary.

NHMRC Travel Principles and Guidelines support Government policy by considering all airlines servicing the route and applying the Australian Government’s  Lowest Practical Fare policy. This is the lowest available fare at the time the travel is booked on a regular service that suits the practical business needs of the traveller.

NHMRC will not pay any additional costs incurred as a result of personal travel you may wish to undertake that coincides with NHMRC official travel.

While members are entitled to Tier 2 travel entitlements (business/premium economy class travel Remuneration Tribunal Determination 2016/07: Official Travel by Office Holders), it is NHMRC’s policy to book economy class in the first instance unless (a) there are significant extenuating circumstances, injury, disability; or (b) actual flight time exceeds four hours for a single sector. Semi-restricted fares will be booked for the forward journey and flexible fares for the return journey.

If you require a change to your flight booking, please call NHMRC’s travel service provider, QBT on:

  • +61 1300 781 390 (select 99#) and quote your booking reference number.

Due to lowest practical fare booking practices, we ask that members keep change requests to a minimum.   Date and time changes are acceptable and can be made directly with QBT using your booking reference number and the contact number included on flight itineraries.

Airline staff at the airport are not able to make flight changes, you must telephone QBT.

Frequent flyer points and airline lounges

Frequent flyer points are not accrued for government travel. Airline tier status credits still apply, but serve only to maintain or recognise status level.

NHMRC does not pay airline lounge membership for members, nor is NHMRC able to make travel bookings based on a traveller’s personal preference for an airline, aircraft type or airline lounge.

Use of private vehicle

While air travel is NHMRC’s preferred means of transport, alternative travel arrangements may be approved prior to travel being undertaken. Where an airline service is not available, the motor vehicle allowance will be paid.

Hire cars or chauffeur driven limousine costs will not be reimbursed by NHMRC.

If you wish to use your own vehicle (not a fleet vehicle or your institution’s vehicle), you may be eligible for an allowance provided you have received prior approval. The motor vehicle allowance,  is paid according to the Remuneration Tribunal Determination 2016/07: Official Travel by Office Holders.



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You will need to contact the Business Services travel team and provide a copy of your current driver licence, comprehensive insurance and registration documentation. You will receive the calculated motor vehicle allowance or the amount NHMRC would have paid for a return airfare or for a hire car booked by NHMRC through one of the WoAG providers, whichever is the lesser. Any traffic or parking infringement notices incurred are your responsibility.


NHMRC complies with mandatory WoAG travel arrangements by booking all accommodation through the appointed accommodation program manager, the AOT Group. NHMRC travel staff will arrange the booking and payment of all accommodation for members.  Accommodation is determined by business requirement, proximity to the meeting venue and expenditure as established by the Remuneration Tribunal Travelling Allowance Rates.

Consideration will be given to value for money when arranging accommodation at the expense of the Commonwealth.

Should members require additional accommodation for non-NHMRC business, you must organise and pay for the accommodation directly with the hotel. NHMRC is unable to make bookings for members’ private accommodation requirements.

Travel allowance

In accordance with the Remuneration Tribunal Determination 2016/07: Official Travel by Office Holders, NHMRC committee members are entitled to receive travel allowance and reimbursement for certain additional expenses.

An incidental component is included in your travel allowance to assist with travel associated costs such as private telephone calls, internet usage, beverages, additional food, laundry costs and newspapers. The current rate for incidentals is $28.00 per overnight stay.

The full amount of travelling allowance will not be paid in the following circumstances:

  • where you receive a travel allowance or reimbursement of travelling expenses from any other source for the same travel;
  • where the travel does not require an overnight absence; 
  • where the cost of a meal is met by the NHMRC and
  • when you stay in non-commercial accommodation, for example the home of a family member or friend, rather than commercial accommodation.

Other travel expenses

NHMRC may reimburse reasonable and legitimate additional expenses such as tolls, parking, taxis, buses, trains and other public transportation. Reimbursement should be evidenced by the original tax invoice or receipt. Additional expense claims will be assessed for reimbursement taking into account the cost effectiveness of the arrangement.

An Additional Expense Claim Form will be provided with your travel arrangements, or a copy can be obtained from NHMRCtravel@nhmrc.gov.au.