Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations

DOD’s Improper Use of First and Business Class Airline Travel

Date: November 6, 2003
Time: 2:00pm
Location: Room 342, Dirksen Senate Office Building

Description: Over the past three years, Congressional hearings and reports by the General Accounting Office (GAO) and the Inspectors General have consistently shown that government-issued travel and purchase cards have been subject to continuing waste, fraud and abuse. A recently completed GAO investigation of premium airline travel by the Department of Defense’s (DOD) employees during fiscal years 2001 and 2002 determined that most first and business class travel was not properly authorized and/or justified. As a result, DOD wasted millions of taxpayer dollars for premium airline tickets. These tickets were purchased with a travel card from a centrally billed account for DOD travelers who should have been flying coach class. According to GAO, this abuse occurred because of weak or nonexistent internal controls within DOD. The purpose of the November 6th hearing was to identify the types of abuse, discuss the causes, determine the magnitude of the problem, and identify what corrective action is required. The hearing objective was to conduct continuing oversight over the use of government-issued travel cards to ensure that expected cost savings are realized.


Panel 2

Gregory D.


Director, Forensic Audits and Investigative Services

U. S. Government Accountability Office

Panel 3


Charles S.


Assistant Secretary of Defense (Force Management Policy)

U. S. Department of Defense

Related Links

Printed Hearing Record