Expensify Trips: Track your itinerary from your expense report

David Barrett —  May 8, 2012 — 24 Comments

Most travel is booked online, and the email receipt has both purchase information and itinerary details.  But don’t you hate forwarding those receipts twice: once to Expensify to get reimbursed, and once to <insert competitor here> to track during the trip?  No more!

Just forward your travel docs to receipts@expensify.com and we’ll not only get you reimbursed after the trip, our mobile apps will now organize your itinerary DURING your trip.  After all, travel and expense are two sides of the same coin: your travel itinerary is just an expense report begging to be submitted.  Why use two apps when you only need one?  It works like this:

  1. Book travel online, as normal — Orbitz, Kayak, or wherever your usually book.
  2. Forward the confirmation email you get to receipts@expensify.com
  3. Watch the trip details appear in the “trips” screen on the Expensify app (iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone).
  4. 4 hours before your flight you’ll get an email travel update.
  5. Open the app and the next itinerary action is highlighted on the dashboard for instant access.
  6. Enjoy your trip!
  7. After you get home, another email will tell you your expense report is ready.
  8. Finish your report in one click: all your travel receipts are there, purchases imported off your credit card, and receipts SmartScanned.
  9. Click Submit; you’re done.

It all seems so obvious in retrospect.  But it only occurred to us to do it when we noticed while optimizing our SmartScan system that so many of our receipts are already travel itineraries.  Everything we’re doing here is with data we already have; we’re just repacking it up in a new way to provide a ton more value.

It doesn’t cost anything extra, there are no ads, and you needn’t upgrade to some premium plan — just keep using SmartScan like you already do (free for 10 receipts/mo) and this massive new feature comes along for the ride.  Just one more way Expensify is getting a little better, every day.  Give it a shot — you’ll never travel the same way again!

   

David Barrett

Posts

Founder of Expensify, destroyer of expense reports, and savior to frustrated employees worldwide.

24 responses to Expensify Trips: Track your itinerary from your expense report

  1. 

    Could we have you read data from our TripIt accounts instead rather than having to forward all plans twice to two different services? I’d rather Expensify focus on the core product and make it kick ass.

  2. 

    @Dave – Agreed, that would be slick. Unfortunately the TripIt API doesn’t allow us to import the original receipt information, so we can’t create an expense report from the data it provides alone: we need the original receipt. So if you’re using Expensify for the reporting function, there’s no real alternative to forwarding the original itineraries to receipts@expensify.com. So nothing has really changed on that front. The only change is that now you have the option of *not* forwarding them to TripIt. In other words, just like before you still need to forward to Expensify to get reimbursed, but now you don’t *also* need to send them to TripIt to track. So it’s definitely aiming to solve the “double forward” problem, but from the other direction. Does this make sense? Thanks!

  3. 

    In forwarding the emails, do we still have to put our special code in the subject line? Or can it deduce our account via the email address that was used? If email address, what if that email address is a different email address than the address used for our Expensify account?

  4. 

    @Mark – The code is only necessary if you’re writing from a new email address, as that is how you add a “secondary login” to your account. Once added, all email forwarded to us from that address will go to your account — no code needed. Does this make sense? More information is here: https://blog.expensify.com/2011/04/11/pro-tips-secondary-logins/ Sorry for the confusion!

  5. 
    Mark Spritzler May 23, 2012 at 8:35 am

    Perfect. Thanks David. As always your implementations are exactly as they should be.

  6. 

    @smoothsavoy – Sorry for the confusion — the trips feature is only on iPhone/Android/BlackBerry/Windows Phone versions of the app. It hasn’t yet been brought to the iPad version, or the website.

  7. 

    So I followed the directions and added all my email addresses like suggested a few weeks ago and forwarded my travel receipts from orbitz etc but the travel did not appear in the iPhone app. The receipts showed in the receipts section but this travel stuff didn’t work.

    I followed the directions posted here.

    Mark

  8. 

    Really? Hm — Orbitz should definitely be supported. Just to confirm, when you see it on the Receipts page on the website, is there a “scan” button on the receipt? If so, when you click it, does that make the trip show up in the “trips” section? Thanks, I appreciate your patience as we iron out these kinks!

  9. 

    DOH! Yes I guess you would have to scan it in order to read it and discover it being travel plans.

    Thanks. I’ll do that on my next trip.

    Mark

  10. 

    @David, I have to agree a bit with @Dave, I would also love an integration with TripIt. I’m sure that the feature you describe here will be excellent for a lot of people, but personally TripIt is really an integrated part of my business life. I don’t mind sending travel itineraries/receipts to two services if those two provide me with exactly what I need. If Expensify would integrate with TripIt just to be able to group together receipts into trips, my life would be so much easier.
    By the way, thank you for an excellent product that makes my life easier already!

  11. 

    David, we use your app and love it. I’m the spouse of retired Navy SEAL Admiral and founder of Rosie’s List(.org) the nation’s largest non-profit search platform featuring only verified veteran and military spouse-owned small businesses. We also provide training/mentorship/networking, etc. as partners of Hiring Our Heroes. We’d like to share your app with our over 5,000 military members, can someone in your org contact me? Thanks!

  12. 

    Stephanie, that’s so great to hear! Would you mind filling out the form at the bottom of this page – http://use.expensify.com/ – so that a sales rep can contact you?

    Let me know if you have any questions!

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