Wondering if travel cards are right for your company? Here are the answers to some of the most common questions we’ve been asked concerning virtual travel cards.

About Virtual Travel Cards

What is a virtual card?

A virtual card is an electronic form of payment associated with a credit card number. There is no physical card involved in transactions. 

What is Visa® Virtual Travel Card Service?

Offered by PNC to qualified commercial card clients, Visa® Virtual Travel Card Service generates a unique on-demand virtual account number (VAN) for each travel event, thereby eliminating the need for employees to use a personal or physical credit card for booking and paying for qualifying purchases.

What are the main travel applications for this service?

The Virtual Travel Card Service can be used for air, rail, hotel and rental car purchases.

Does this new service replace corporate cards?

No, the Virtual Travel Card Service is a complement to corporate cards. Virtual cards are often used for employees, consultants or contractors who travel for business but do not have a corporate card. Virtual cards also may be used for the airfare and hotel expenses of employees issued a corporate card to keep the cardholders’ credit card limits lower.

What are the main differences between virtual cards and central travel accounts (CTAs)?

One of the key advantages of virtual cards over traditional CTAs is that virtual accounts better support reconciliation because a unique card number is associated with each travel event. In addition, unlike CTAs, virtual accounts are only activated — and stay activated — for the time of usage and have controls to limit use to in-policy purchases.

Do I qualify for the Virtual Travel Card Service?

Clients must have an existing PNC commercial card program that is used for corporate travel, with at least $1 million in annual spend.

Using the Virtual Travel Card Service

What travel spending qualifies for the Virtual Travel Card Service?

Virtual Travel Card Service can be used for air, rail, hotel and rental car purchases. Your company must use a travel management company that is part of the Conferma Travel Procurement Network.

What is the Conferma Travel Procurement Network?

The Conferma Travel Procurement Network is a network of travel providers who have contracted with Conferma to connect their booking systems to Conferma’s technology platform.

Travel providers requisition single-use accounts and submit data describing the purchase, then use the virtual card number to complete the purchase.

Conferma gathers data from the travel provider and merchant to automatically reconcile the booking/invoice data with the transaction data. Travel providers can provide this data to PNC clients.

Travel Program Management 

What are the key benefits of this service for program administrators?

Key benefits for program administrators include:

  • Greater efficiencies from automated reconciliation
  • Reduced fraud exposure through a range of spending controls
  • Greater visibility into the organization’s total travel spend

Additionally, spending on virtual cards is included in the calculation for an organization’s annual rebate.

How does automated reconciliation work?

The unique identifier for each virtual account ties travel booking data to transaction data.

How do travel program administrators control spending on the Virtual Travel Card Service?

Program managers can set spending limits based on the travel itinerary, such as amount, travel dates and merchant category codes.

What program billing methods are supported for the Virtual Travel Card Service?

The program billing method is corporate pay only; individual pay is not supported.

How does the Virtual Travel Card Service work with Visa IntelliLink® or PNC ActivePay?

Virtual Travel Card Service data can be loaded to these platforms for summary viewing.

How can I enroll my organization for the Virtual Travel Card Service?

Contact your PNC Treasury Management Officer, who will guide you through the enrollment process.

Are incidental travel expenses accomodated on virtual travel cards?

Yes, the virtual card program can be configured such that the final charge amount exceeds the booking amount by a defined percentage, specifically to account for incidental expenses while traveling.