Can travel costs be incurred before Horizon 2020 project starts?

Ready, set…. travel?

It’s so exciting! Your SMEI Grant Agreement is signed and now you’re waiting for the project to officially start. You are ready to begin technical, commercial and communication activities, some of which immediately.

For example, let’s say your project plan foresees participating in an important industry event which takes place at the very start of the project. You registered for the event and now need to book plane tickets. So you ask yourself: are travel costs eligible if incurred before the official project start?

The answer in this particular case is “yes”. Normally only costs incurred during the project are eligible but there are some exceptions from to this rule. One of them are costs of travel which is organized and paid in advance. The only condition is that the travel itself takes place after the project starting date.

The project starts on June 1st and the kick-off meeting is on June 3rd. But plane tickets and accommodation for participants were booked and paid two weeks earlier, on May 15th. In this case you can charge costs to the H2020 project. If the meeting took place before June 1st, they would not be eligible.

Things to remember:

• Travel charged to the project must be directly related to implementation.
• Always keep travel documentation which proves that your travel was connected to the H2020 project.

Still not sure if your travel cost is eligible? We can help!