Travel Information

If your airfare is being paid by federal funds, you are required to use a U.S. Flag Carrier, per the federal regulation printed below. (Federal funds are ISU fund numbers within the ranges of 401 - 404, 406 - 449, and 601 - 699, as well as federally-funded 47X state accounts. Federally-funded accounts have a Revenue Code beginning with 02 or 04.) If a U. S. Flag Carrier is not available you are required to complete the Fly America Act Waiver Checklist.

§ 301-3.6 Use of United States Flag Carriers.

(b) Use of United States flag air carriers.

(1) Definitions. As used in this section, the following definitions apply:

(i) The Fly America Act. The "Fly America Act" refers to provisions enacted by section 5 of the International Air Transportation Fair Competitive Practices Act of 1974 (Pub. L. 93-623, January 3, 1975), 49 U.S.C. App. 1517, as amended by section 21 of the International Air Transportation Competition Act of 1979 (Pub. L. 96-192, February 15, 1980), 94 Stat. 43.

(ii) U.S. flag air carrier. The term "U.S. flag air carrier" means an air carrier holding a certificate under section 401 of the Federal Aviation Act of 1958 (49 U.S.C. App. 1371). Foreign air carriers operating under permits are excluded.

(iii) United States. For purposes of the Fly America Act, "United States" means the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the territories and possessions of the United States (49 U.S.C. App. 1301(41)).

(iv) Gateway airport in the United States. A "gateway airport in the United States" means the last airport in the United States from which the traveler's flight departs, or the first airport in the United States at which the traveler's flight arrives.

(v) Gateway airport abroad. A "gateway airport abroad" means the airport abroad from which the traveler last embarks en route to the United States or at which the traveler first debarks incident to travel from the United States.

(2) General requirements of the Fly America Act. The Fly America Act, 49 U.S.C. App. 1517, as implemented by the Comptroller General's guidelines, Decision B-138942, March 31, 1981, requires Federal employees and their dependents, consultants, contractors, grantees, and others performing United States Government financed foreign air travel to travel by U.S. flag air carriers:

(i) Unless travel by foreign air carrier is a matter of necessity as defined in paragraph (b)(3) of this section, or

(ii) When U.S. flag air carrier service is available within the guidelines in paragraphs (b)ÿ1A(4) and (5) of this section.

(3) Necessity for use of foreign air carrier service. Use of foreign air carrier service may be deemed necessary if a U.S. flag air carrier otherwise available cannot provide the air transportation needed, or use of U.S. flag air carrier service will not accomplish the agency's mission.

(4) Availability of U.S. flag air carrier service.

(i) General. U.S. flag air carrier service is available even though:

(A) Comparable or a different kind of service can be provided at less cost by a foreign air carrier;

(B) Foreign air carrier service is preferred by or is more convenient for the agency or the traveler; or

(C) Service by a foreign air carrier can be paid for in excess foreign currency, unless U.S. flag air carriers decline to accept excess or near excess foreign currencies for transportation payable only out of those monies. (See also paragraph (b)(5)(iv) of this section.)

(ii) Scheduling principles. In determining availability of U.S. flag air carrier service, the following scheduling principles should be followed unless their application results in the last or first leg of travel to and from the United States being performed by foreign air carrier:

(A) U.S. flag air carrier service available at point of origin should be used to destination or, in the absence of direct or through service, to the farthest interchange point on a usually traveled route;

(B) Where an origin or interchange point is not served by U.S. flag air carrier, foreign air carrier service should be used only to the nearest interchange point on a usually traveled route to connect with U.S. flag air carrier service; or

(C) Where a U.S. flag air carrier involuntarily reroutes the traveler via a foreign carrier, the foreign air carrier may be used notwithstanding the availability of alternative U.S. flag air carrier service.

(5) Guidelines for determining unavailability of U.S. flag air carrier service.

(i) Travel to and from the United States. Passenger service by a U.S. flag air carrier will not be considered available when the travel is between a gateway airport in the United States and a gateway airport abroad and the gateway airport abroad is:

(A) The traveler's origin or destination airport, and the use of U.S. flag air carrier service would extend the time in a travel status, including delay at origin and accelerated arrival at destination, by at least 24 hours more than travel by foreign air carrier;

(B) An interchange point, and the use of U.S. flag air carrier service would require the traveler to wait 6 hours or more to make connections at that point, or delayed departure from or accelerated arrival at the gateway airport in the United States would extend the time in a travel status by at least 6 hours more than travel by foreign air carrier.

(ii) Travel between two points outside the United States. For travel between two points outside the United States, U.S. flag air carrier service will not be considered to be reasonably available:

(A) If travel by foreign air carrier would eliminate two or more aircraft changes en-route;

(B) Where one of the two points abroad is the gateway airport en route to or from the United States, if the use of a U.S. flag air carrier would extend the time in a travel status by at least 6 hours more than travel by foreign air carrier, including accelerated arrival at the overseas destination or delayed departure from the overseas origin, as well as delay at the gateway airport or other interchange point abroad; or

(C) Where the travel is not part of a trip to or from the United States, if the use of a U.S. flag air carrier would extend the time in a travel status by at least 6 hours more than traveled by foreign air carrier including delay at origin, delay en route and accelerated arrival at destination.

(iii) Short distance travel. For all short distance travel, regardless of origin and destination, U.S. flag air carrier service will not be considered available when the elapsed travel time on a scheduled flight from origin to destination airport by foreign air carrier is 3 hours or less and service by U.S. flag air carrier would involve twice the travel time.

(iv) Travel financed solely with excess foreign currencies. U.S. flag air carriers render themselves unavailable by declining to accept payment in foreign currencies for transportation services required by certain programs or activities of the Government which, under legislative authority, are financed solely with excess foreign currencies which may not be converted to U.S. dollars. In these instances, and notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (b)(4)(i)(C) of this section, foreign flag air carriers that will accept the required foreign currency may be used to the extent necessary to accomplish the mission of the particular program or activity. The statement of justification required under paragraph (c)(3) of this section must indicate that the transportation service needed can be paid for only in excess foreign currencies and that otherwise available U.S. flag air carriers declined to accept payment in the foreign currencies.


This page was last updated on December 18, 2014.