BTA Account Management Information & Guides

What Is BTA?

The American Express Business Travel Account (BTA) is a centralised billing payment solution that provides a single view of all your air travel related charges, without requiring a physical Card. This enhanced visibility gives your Company maximum control over expenses, while also helping to save time and money.

Your Company's BTA is lodged with your chosen Travel Management Company (TMC), and American Express works in partnership with that TMC to arrange your centralised payments.

With the BTA in place, your Company is able to streamline their reconciliation process, as well as capture the travel and charge data required to easily identify, reconcile and allocate transactions, based on the criteria that is most relevant to your Company. With the BTA, your Company receives one convenient statement every month, rather than many invoices. This statement contains a great deal of valuable information to help your Company optimise your travel spend.

In addition, with the BTA, your Company can have complete control over who in your Company can use the BTA to charge their air travel expenses. They also have increased visibility for otherwise "invisible" travellers, who may include infrequent travellers and non-employees, such as consultants or clients.

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How BTA Benefits Your Company

Monitoring and controlling expenses is a major priority for all companies. It is essential to maximise the control and savings available through a robust expense management programme. This section reminds you of the considerable value available to your Company through the use of the American Express Business Travel Account (BTA) programme as the payment method for air related travel expenses.

Maximise Control
The BTA enables easy and effective monitoring of your Company's employee travel expenses, using rich data and your own specially defined reference fields (e.g. Cost Centre Number). Furthermore, as the product is only used with your designated Travel Management Company, it ensures preferred supplier usage and travel policy compliance.

Save Money
The BTA improves your Company's cash flow by up to 55-calendar days1, with interest free extended credit terms. When used in conjunction with the data you receive from your Travel Management Company, the BTA can allow for more effective negotiations with vendors.

Save Time
The BTA cuts down the time you need to spend in administrative tasks, as American Express provides one consolidated statement, with detailed transaction data. This removes the need to process multiple invoices from travel agents. And there is only one payment to make, rather than multiple!

American Express has a range of reconciliation options such as BTAConnect and electronic data files, to streamline your processes thus, saving you even more time. Further, the BTA requires no administrative work relating to employee reimbursements and cash advances for air travel.

1. Actual interest free period will vary based on the date of charge and the billing cycle cut-off date.

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How BTA Benefits Your Travellers

As the BTA enables a more simplified expense reimbursement process, this allows your employees more time to focus on their core responsibilities. Your travellers will have no liability to American Express for charges, no Card to keep track of, and no outlay of personal funds for business travel.

Business Travel Accident Insurance2
Complimentary Business Travel Accident Insurance provides accidental death and dismemberment insurance automatically, at no extra charge, when common carrier tickets are charged to the BTA. This provides your employees with peace of mind knowing that they are covered in the case of an accident for business trips from their departure, throughout their trip (up to 30 days), and until they return. Additionally, they receive limited coverage for personal trips charged to the BTA undertaken while on a wider business trip.

Please click here for the full American Express Business Travel Accident Insurance Terms and Conditions.

Global Assist
For legal and medical emergencies while travelling, your employees can call the free Global Assist service that will connect them with an English-speaking lawyer or doctor. The service is available 24 hours a day, virtually anywhere in the world, whenever they travel more than 200km from home, for up to 90 days.

To contact Global Assist, please call (+852) 8206-8301 (English) or (+852) 8206-8302 (Cantonese).

2. Please refer to your Travel Protector Plan for details. Insurance is underwritten by ACE Insurance Limited and is subject to the terms and conditions or cover. Exclusions and limitations apply.

Furthermore, your Company can rest assured that they have the world-class support and service of American Express Account Management and Customer Service.

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How Does Your BTA Work?

We Set-Up Your Account
We work with your Travel Management Company (TMC) to set up your account and capture the data you need.

Your Travellers Book Their Trips & Advise Their Defined Reference Fields
Air and related transaction fees, plus defined reference fields such as cost centre code etc. which your TMC bills to your BTA.

You Receive A Statement Or Data File From American Express
Statement or electronic data file, which you can use for reporting or uploading data to your internal system.

You Reconcile Your Transactions & Pay American Express
Streamline the reconciliation with our tools such as BTAConnect of data file. Pay American Express and then send payment details, list of approved transactions, including disputed transactions, if any.

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Online Statements

Online Statements are free and offer major business advantages over paper-based statements. In addition to enjoying greater accessibility to your BTA, Online Statement delivers the following benefits:

Flexible and User-Friendly

  • Receive statement data in a highly flexible Microsoft Excel format.

  • You can easily view, sort and manage transactions according to your own criteria, meaning simpler reconciliation.

  • Your billing statement will also be delivered in a convenient PDF format.

Save Time and Less Paperwork

  • Increase the efficiency and organisation of your office. With no need for paperwork or filing, you'll cut down on the clutter and find that productivity increases.

Take Control Wherever You Are

  • Get 24/7 secure online access of up to 13 months of your statements with our online Programme Management tool – American Express @Work.

Better for the Environment

  • We'll also send you an email to let you know when your most recent statement is ready to view online.

To learn more about Online Statements, click here.
Or to see a sample Online Statement click on one of the links below:
Illustrative PDF Statement Sample
Illustrative XLS Statement Sample

BTA Online Statement is easy and quick to implement. To upgrade your view at no additional cost, sign up online today by clicking here.

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BTAConnect

Upgrade Your View
Your Company can choose to upgrade your view with BTAConnect, to start enjoying a more streamlined reconciliation process. Available at no additional cost, BTAConnect is a new feature of the American Express Business Travel Account (BTA), designed to help you save time by making your reconciliation process easier at every step.

BTA Benefits Include:

  • Flexibility to customise how you view data, ensuring the solution is tailored to your Company's needs.

  • Additional online data fields (e.g. Cost Centre Number), to help your reconciliation matching process.

  • Quick and simple exporting of data, making it easier for you to send information to other departments.

  • One network used by you, American Express Customer Service, and your Travel Management Company, meaning transaction enquiries can be managed securely online.

Watch BTAConnect Demo

Flexible Data
BTAConnect can also help you to save time by simplifying the Business Travel Account (BTA) reconciliation process. Having the data you need, in a format you need it, is the key to faster and easier reconciliation. With this in mind, American Express designed BTAConnect to enable a more streamlined and flexible BTA reconciliation process.

Upgrade to BTAConnect at no cost and enjoy greater visibility of your data, including the:

  • Ability to control the information you see by selecting and deselecting fields. These user preferences are automatically saved.

  • Flexibility to sort and filter data. For example, by Cost Centre Number or Project Code.

  • Convenience of a search function to quickly find the information you need.

  • Ability to easily select, submit and view your approved transactions for payment to American Express Customer Service, by simple clicks.

Secure Queries
American Express offers a significant benefit with BTAConnect, allowing you to enjoy a smoother reconciliation process by asking questions about transactions, and receiving replies directly within BTAConnect. Available at no cost, this unique online network can enable better communication by securely linking you with both American Express Customer Services and your Travel Management Company (TMC). Know who is answering your enquiry, and benefit from a streamlined process that allows all parties involved to view questions and responses.

Save time with BTAConnect's enhanced query feature:

  • Ask a question about a transaction directly through BTAConnect. No need to wonder if it should be answered by American Express or by your TMC, the system does this for you.

  • Receive replies from either American Express Customer Services or your TMC within BTAConnect, enabling easier tracking of queries raised and resolved.

  • Complete visibility of enquiries and responses for all parties, meaning no need to explain a situation a second time.

BTAConnect also gives you flexibility to customise how you view data. Click here to learn more.

BTAConnect is easy and quick to implement. To upgrade your view at no additional cost, sign up online today by clicking here or calling the BTA Hong Kong team.

Case Study
American Express understands that every Company has their own travel spend reconciliation process, so to illustrate how BTAConnect can help make reconciliation more simple, please see below a fictional example with a Company called "Anon Ltd." Anon Ltd has a turnover of $375m and 1200 employees, of whom 30% are frequent travellers across Europe. While the Company in this case study is fictional, the benefits that can be gained from BTAConnect are entirely correct.

John, an Accounts Administrator at Anon Ltd used to wait for his Business Travel Account (BTA) statement before he could start his reconciliation process. One of his frustrations when reconciling the account was that he did not know if he should send transaction queries to American Express or his Travel Management Company (TMC). Sometimes he had to ask the same question separately to both parties. He also found it difficult to manipulate travel data to send to other departments for approval. However, since upgrading to BTAConnect at no additional cost, John has noticed his reconciliation process is much more efficient, in the following ways:

  • John now receives transaction data 2 to 3 days before he receives the BTA statement, so he can get a head start on his reconciliation process.

  • Asking questions is now simple, as John can submit queries in the BTAConnect online portal, and track the status regardless of whether they should be answered by American Express Customer Services or his TMC.

  • He finds BTAConnect's sort, filter and search functions helpful when manipulating travel spend data. Being able to export into other programmes also saves him time when sending data to his colleagues.

  • Sending American Express Customer Service reconciliation advice is also simple and effective, all he needs to do is to select the transactions and click the submit button.

  • John has recommended BTAConnect to his peers, and what surprised him most was that upgrading to BTAConnect didn't cost his Company anything.

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Programme Management

How to Raise a Dispute on a BTA Charge
BTA statements are payable in full, upon receipt of the statement. For any transactions you are not paying, you are required to notify American Express and specify the dispute reason to avoid being charged a late payment fee.

If you wish to raise a dispute on a transaction appearing on your BTA statement, the disputed transaction should be clearly identified with a valid dispute reason on the Reconciliation Advice or by calling the BTA Hong Kong team prior to the next billing cycle. Please click here for a list of valid dispute reasons and support required. You must ensure you supply all necessary details and references to support your claim.

Once you advise a transaction is in dispute and if the dispute reason is valid, American Express will remove the transaction from the statement. However, if the investigation confirms that the transaction is valid, it will be re-billed to your account. All other non-disputed transactions must be paid on receipt of the BTA statement.

Payment Options
Please note that payments are due on receipt of statements. There are a number of methods for paying an American Express BTA statement:

Direct Debit (Autopay)
Your nominated bank account will be debited 14 days after your statement cut-off date. To enable this payment option, please click here to access the Direct Debit Authority Form.

Cheque
All cheques must be accompanied by a reconciliation advice and be sent to:

American Express International Inc.
G.P.O. Box 10066
Central, Hong Kong
Hong Kong

Please include BTA number(s) with the cheque (e.g. attach a list or write on the reverse side of the cheque) to ensure your account is properly credited. Please allow 7 days for receipt and allocation of cheque payments by mail.

Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT)
Pay into the American Express bank account.

Bank Name: Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Ltd
Bank Address: 1 Queen's Road, Central Hong Kong
Account Holder Name: American Express International INC
Bank Code: 004
Account Number: 111 159604 001
Swift Code: HSBCHKHHHKH

Please email then, email the date of payment, BTA number(s) and total amount of the payment to Corporate.Remittances.HK@aexp.com and BTAHongKong@aexp.com on the same day the payment is transferred into the American Express bank account, advising the date of payment, BTA number(s) and the amount of payment.

Reconciliation Advice
A Reconciliation Advice must accompany all cheque and EFT payments if you are not paying the full account balance*. The Reconciliation Advice details all the transactions you wish to pay, and those you may wish to dispute.
If you are using a Reconciliation Advice from the paper or PDF statement, email it to bta.client.services@aexp.com on the same day the cheque is mailed or payment is transferred into the American Express bank account.

If you want to prepare your own Reconciliation Advice, please click here for instructions on how to create and send an electronic Reconciliation Advice file online.

*American Express requires this so they can accurately allocate payment to the transactions. However, there is no need for this if you pay the full statement account balance. That is, if you are not disputing or withholding payment of any particular transactions in that statement.

Missing or Misallocated Payments
If there is no Reconciliation Advice accompanying a payment, or if the Reconciliation Advice is incorrect, the payment(s) will remain unallocated. This means that the BTA may become overdue and late payment fees may apply.

Late Payment Fees
Late payment fees are easily avoided, simply by making sure the full account balance is paid upon receipt of the statement. If the account is not being paid in full, then a Reconciliation Advice must be sent to American Express, along with the matching payment, clearly indicating which transactions are being paid and which are being disputed.

If the full balance is not paid by the receipt of the next account statement, American Express may charge your Company late payment fees on the overdue balance, monthly in arrears. Payment must be made at least 3 working days before the next statement cycle ends to ensure allocation of payment.

If a BTA account is 45 days overdue for payment, late payment fees will apply, the Programme Administrator may be contacted via letter or telephone, and the account may be suspended. This will only happen after the Programme Administrator has been advised that this will occur.

Forms
Direct Debit Form
Change of Company Details Form

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How to Reconcile & Pay Your BTA

Simple Steps
Our range of options make reconciling your BTA easy and effective.

Statements
Check the statement for errors. Pay particular attention to the New Debits, Overdue Transaction and New Allocated Payments and Credits sections. Your previous payment should show in the Cleared Transactions section. If you believe you have already paid for an Overdue Transaction and can see the payment has been received, it means that the payment is not yet allocated. In this situation, you should contact the BTA Hong Kong Team at (+852) 2277 1096.

Reconciliation Advice
If you are not paying the total balance due, complete the Reconciliation Advice page. Paper and PDF statements can complete the Reconciliation Advice page in their statement. Tick all transaction that you want to pay and indicate the total amount you are paying. If you are receiving an excel statement or eData file, you can complete an electronic Reconciliation Advice file. The completed form should be returned to the BTA Servicing Team via fax or email, along with the date of payment, total amount and BTA number(s).

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FAQs

How Do I Add or Change My Company Contacts?
If your Company wishes to add or change any of your contacts, including Authorised Signatory and Programme Administrator, please click here to fill in a Change of Company Details form. Then have it signed by an Authorised Signatory and fax it to BTA Hong Kong team. These changes should take up to 10 working days to finalise, from receipt of the Change of Company Details Form.

How do I change the @Work online user details?
The Programme Administrator or authorised person from your Company can contact BTA Hong Kong team.

Who can help me with a question regarding a transaction in the statement?
You can contact the BTA Hong Kong team.

How Do I Cancel a BTA?
A BTA can be cancelled by faxing a letter on Company letterhead requesting the cancellation to BTA Hong Kong team. The letter needs to be signed by the Authorised Signatory of your Company.

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Useful Contacts

Business Travel Account (BTA) Servicing Team:
Phone:   (+852) 2277 1096
Fax:       (+852) 2811 2414
Email:  BTAHongKong@aexp.com
Operating Hours:  8:30am – 5:30pm Hong Kong time, Monday to Friday (except Public Holidays)

Programme Administrator Corporate Support team:
Phone:   (+852) 2277 1095
Fax:       (+852) 2811 2414
Email:  casthongkong@aexp.com
Operating Hours:  9:00am – 5:30pm Hong Kong time, Monday to Friday (except Public Holidays)

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