Steinhardt Guideline: Acela

Administration and Finance

Steinhardt Guideline: Acela

Rail travel may be used whenever feasible and/or when it is more economical than air travel. Travelers are expected to choose the lowest economy priced fare vailable. Individuals are encouraged to take advantage of University discounts by booking preferred rail services. Preferred vendors for rail services can be found at:

– New York University Policy on Business Expenses, Rev. June 27, 2016, p. 8


Acela is a frequent option for rail travel and does not require special approval. It is not, however, permitted to be used for federally funded projects. This is because federal guidelines require economy class. As Acela offers only First Class and Business Class, it does not qualify. Thus, within the Steinhardt School: 

  • Fund 25 projects: Acela is not permitted
  • All other projects and chartfields: Acela may be used if it offers the lowest priced logical mode of transportation.

In some cases, Acela may be preferred when the total door to door travel time is less than flying, even if the actual fare on occasion is lower for the shuttle. Rail travel may avoid flight delays, reduce travel time and expense getting to airports, and allow University business to be transacted while en route.

Note: NYU has a contract with Amtrak which provides a 5-20% discount (determined by city pairs) on Acela Express Business Class service. The discount may only be obtained by booking your Amtrak Acela Express reservation through Egencia, NYU's preferred travel agency. Please note, the discount will not be applied until clicking the final purchase button.

October 6, 2016