Travel Related Meals

The GSA (U.S. General Services Administration) establishes the maximum CONUS (Continental United States) Per Diem rates for travel customers. Rates are set by fiscal year, effective October 1.

They are reviewed annually and differ by travel location.

State Administrative and Accounting Manual - Meal Section


Current Meal Per Diem Rates

The M&IE Rate is the allowable meals and incidentals amount for one person, per day. As needed, this can be split per meal by percentage (rounded to the nearest dollar):

  • 25% for Breakfast
  • 30% for Lunch
  • 45% for Dinner

Below are meal rates for a few popular local destinations:

  • Bellingham: $11, $14 $21 = $46/day
  • Portland: $16, $20, $30 = $66/day
  • Seattle: $18, $21, $32 = $71/day

Instructions to finding other Per Diem rates...

Per-Meal Breakdown for all Continental US Per Diem Meal Rates ...


Coffee & Light Refreshments

Coffee & Light Refreshments Esign Form

This form is applied to purchases made with all University monies. The purchase of food for meetings is subject to State and university regulations. The University is not required to provide coffee and/or light refreshments at meetings.

  1. The Fund Financial Manager or Budget Authority insures that purchase requests meet all applicable conditions and approves the request.

  2. The Fund Financial Manager or Budget Authority will determine that the refreshment request meets all of the following conditions:
    • The refreshments must be essential to the completeness (i.e., an integral part) of an official University meeting or training session, and
    • The University must require that the employee attend the meeting or formal training session, and
    • The purpose of the event must be to conduct official WWU business or to provide formal training to WWU employees, and
    • Cost per person served may not exceed $5.00 for refreshments or the allowable per diem for meals (SAAM 10.40.40), and
    • The meeting must be away from the employee's regular work place, and
    • Indicate whether or not a state of Washington facility is to be used for the event. State regulations require that state facilities be given preference when possible (SAAM 10.10.55). If a State facility will not be used, you must fill out and submit an Event/Conference Authorization Form (see Business & Financial Affairs Procedure 5320.02).

  3. To purchase coffee and light refreshments/meals, a Coffee/Meals authorization form must completed and approved prior to the event.

  4. The cost of refreshments may not be supported by University monies when the purpose of the meeting is to conduct one of the following kinds of activities:
    • Normal daily business of University employees.
    • Regularly scheduled staff meetings.
    • Anniversaries of units.
    • Anniversaries of individual employment.
    • Retirements.
    • Elections or election celebrations.
    • Lobbying a legislator or government official.
    • Employee meals with candidates seeking University employment.
    • Social events, open houses.
    • Extra fees charged for late orders and late payment fees.
Page Updated 10.16.2013