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Using The Purchasing Card

Purchasing Check List

  • Refer to the University of Virginia Purchasing Card Programs website to determine if the required payment method for a purchase must be the Pcard.
  • Consult the Guidelines for Competition to determine if your purchase will require competition or other processing by Procurement and Supplier Diversity Services or if your department may order it directly.
  • Check the Goods and Services Procurement Guide and the restricted item list to verify that the purchase can be made with Pcard.
  • Ask for and receive confirmation from the vendor for each order that the requested items are not subject to the Internal Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR) and document that information. If one or more items are subject to the ITAR, contact the UVA Office of Export Controls (OEC) at or 434-982-5725 before proceeding.
  • Claim the Virginia sales tax exemption for goods and services, except for prepared food and air/rail tickets. For other states, see the State Tax Exemption Certificates website to determine exemption status.
  • REMEMBER -- Never put your full card number or your date of birth in a fax, email or email attachment. However, you may put the last four digits of your card number.
  • Make internet purchases from secure web sites only. Website addresses begin with "https://" when the Secure Socket Layer is present, although this may not appear until the order is placed. Information on the vendor's security certification can be found under Help in the browser's toolbar.
  • Maintain all receipts and/or packing slips to document purchases and reconcile to your monthly purchasing card statement.
  • If you are purchasing food with the Pcard, you must follow the Business Meal policy.


After the Purchase

  • If you mistakenly paid the sales tax, call the vendor as soon as possible and ask for them to credit that amount back to your account.
  • If you need to return an item, ask the vendor to credit the amount to your Pcard. Do NOT accept store credit for returned items. Contact the Purchasing Card Administratorpopup for direction if a vendor will only issue store credit.

Paying for University Travel with a Purchasing Card

You must ensure your planned purchase meets all University travel regulations. See the Travel Basics page.

If you are traveling outside your local area, please call the Bank of America phone number on the back of your pcard to notify them of your travel dates and destination. It is recommended that you do this at least 2 days prior to traveling to ensure the bank authorizes your transactions while traveling. If the bank is not notified they may suspect fraud and suspend your pcard.

The Pcard can be used to pay for conference registration, air and rail tickets, and car rental. The Pcard CANNOT be used to pay for lodging except for the first night lodging deposit when required by the hotel, or meals when in travel status. A Local Funds Pcards can be used to pay for additional travel expenses.

Air and Rail Spending Limits

The Purchasing Card Administrator can temporarily raise your spending limits, if necessary, to purchase air or rail tickets or remove the lodging restriction for first night deposit, if you submit the Pcard Change Request form with all requested information.

First Night Lodging Deposit

The Purchasing Card Administrator can temporarily remove the lodging restriction for first night deposit, if you submit the Purchasing Card Change Request form "Lift Hotel Restriction (First Night Lodging Only)". All University travel regulations still apply including lodging limit restrictions.

Lodging with Approved Local Contract Hotels for guests/visitors

The Purchasing Card Administrator can permanently remove the lodging restriction if you routinely pay for guests and visitors to the University if you submit the Pcard Change Request form “Permanently Remove Lodging Restriction (local hotels only).” For a list of approved local contract hotels click here.

Rental Car Charges

Please note: The car rental industry requires the driver's name to match the name on the credit card used for payment. If the traveler has a University Pcard, the reservation can be paid with the Pcard. Otherwise, the traveler will need to use their personal credit card and seek reimbursement.

The exception to this restriction is for local (Charlottesville) vehicle rentals. The two contract vendors – Enterprise and Hertz, Charlottesville-only locations – have agreed to allow renters/drivers to use the Pcards of their central administrators.

Documenting Purchases

You must keep all original receipts and other documentation for each of your purchases. All Pcard documentation must be kept in the cardholder’s department per the University's Record Retention policy.

Periodically, the University or State will audit documentation to ensure compliance with all applicable guidelines. If it is found that a card is misused, your cardholder privileges may be suspended or revoked.

Pcard Purchasing Log - Annual Workbook

Although a purchasing card log is not required documentation, it is a tool that can be used to track purchases and help analyze annual spend. To use the Pcard log, record each transaction as you make it on your current Pcard transaction log in the Pcard Purchasing Log - Annual Workbook. This will ensure that the last two tabs of the log reflect your annual usage.

Maintaining Proof of Receipt of Goods and Services

  • Maintain detailed and dated packing slips and/or credit card receipts. If goods and/or services are received by someone other than the cardholder, the documentation detailing proof of receipt must be signed and dated by that person.
  • For air and rail tickets maintain proof of purchase which must include cost and class of ticket, traveler's name, and destination. Refer to the Public Transportation webpage for detailed requirements.

  • Below is a list of transactions that require the following information to be included in the documentation:

    • Catering-purpose of purchase, including type of meal (breakfast, lunch, dinner, appetizers), number of people, alcohol purchased (yes or no)
    • Meals-purpose of purchase, including type of meal (breakfast, lunch, dinner, appetizers), number of people, alcohol purchased (yes or no)
    • Hotels-location, name of traveler, daily lodging rate, number of nights
    • Gifts (florists included)-recipient, purpose of purchase
    • Human Subject Payments-list IRB (Institutional Review Board) number (assigned by the IRB once payment compensation has been approved for participants in research trials)

Pcard Statement

Each month the cardholder will receive a monthly statement from Bank of America at the end of the Pcard billing cycle.

  • Purchasing Card Billing Dates for 2014
  • Please note: Monthly spending limits are based on the Pcard billing Cycle
MonthStarting DateClosing DateFiscal Month Transactions will post to PTAO
January 14 Dec 15 Jan February 2014
February 16 Jan 14 Feb March 2014
March 15 Feb 14 Mar April 2014
April 15 Mar 15 Apr May 2014
May 16 Apr 15 May June 2014
June 16 May 13 Jun Fiscal Year 14-15 July 2014
July 14 Jun 15 Jul August 2014
August 16 Jul 15 Aug September 2014
September 16 Aug 15 Sep October 2014
October 16 Sep 15 Oct November 2014
November 16 Oct 14 Nov December 2014
December 15 Nov 15 Dec January 2015
January 16 Dec 15 Jan February 2015


In addition to your mailed paper statement, you will be able to view your Pcard transactions 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and you may print your statement one day after cycle close through an online service called WORKS. Example: For March closing date March 15 the electronic statement would be available March 16 in WORKS.

Monthly Reconciliation

  • You are required to reconcile the Pcard monthly statement each month within three days of receipt.
  • Attach all receipts including order confirmations for online purchases to the Pcard statement. If the recipient of the goods and/or services is different than the cardholder, then the recipient should sign the receipt, packing slip, or whatever documentation is available at the time of receipt.
  • You must sign and date the Pcard monthly statement.
  • Your Authorized Approver must sign and date the Pcard monthly statement(s).
  • There is an individual in your department who has "AP P-Card Holder" responsibility in the Integrated System and whose responsibility it is to change PTAEO distributions on Pcard transactions as needed. This person is often referred to as the "PTAEO Changer". Forward the Pcard statement and receipts to the "PTAEO Changer" in your department and then to your department's Recon@UVA Preparer for reconciliation to Grants Management.