5. Travel

Should students and staff travel?

Students and staff should follow government guidance and Foreign & Commonwealth Office travel advice and not travel abroad unless it is essential.

I am a Queen Mary student on an Exchange programme overseas. What should I do?

You should continue to follow the guidance from your host institution. If you have any questions please contact

I have an international field trip coming up, what should I do?

To minimise risks to students and staff, we are cancelling all international field trips for undergraduates scheduled between now and 1 July 2020.

We are keeping all other planned field trips under review. If you are directly affected by this decision, please contact your school or institute directly.

I have concerns about the effect of the coronavirus outbreak on my visa or my immigration status in the UK

On 24 March, the Home Office updated its visa guidance to provide greater certainty for international higher education students and staff in the UK currently unable to return home due to COVID-19. Read this guidance on the UK Government website.

Queen Mary's Advice and Counselling Service have published information for current Queen Mary students with Tier 4 immigration permission.

If you have concerns about your own immigration status in the UK, or that of a family member, please contact the Advice and Counselling Service for confidential advice.

If you are a member of staff affected by the outbreak and you have concerns about your immigration status, please contact

Can I make a travel insurance claim for cancellation of a conference or university related trip?

If the Foreign & Commonwealth Office travel advice is that it is safe to travel but the hosts cancels the trip, this is beyond the control of the traveller or the university.

Insurers will therefore provide cover in this situation. Visit the Travel Insurance page (internal link) for details of how to make a claim.

How do I make a travel insurance claim for flights and hotels for a cancelled trip to a high risk area?

In the first instance check with the airline or travel management company (Key Travel) for any refunds.

If that fails, we can claim through RSA Travel Insurance.

If I decide not to travel can I make a claim on travel insurance for the trip?

If the event is still going ahead and the traveller decides not to travel, a travel insurance claim will not be accepted as this will be considered 'disinclination to travel'.

How do I make a travel insurance claim?

All travel insurance claims should be notified directly to RSA (Travel Insurer) and sent to with supporting documents where claims will be reviewed and considered under its own merit.

Along with a completed Travel Insurance Claim Form you will need to supply the following:

  • A letter or email from the host organisation of cancellation of event due to coronavirus
  • Evidence of flight invoice
  • Hotel invoice
  • Travel insurance cover note.

Visit the Travel Insurance page (internal link) for details of how to make a claim and to download a Travel Insurance Claim Form.


Is there a travel insurance excess?

For any travel booked outside of the Travel Management Company (Key Travel) a £50 excess will be deducted.

How long will a travel insurance claim take to settle?

Due to the high number of claims, this process can take up to six to eight weeks.

Can I return home to the UK if I’m on a placement or study programme and it has been cancelled by the host?

Yes, if the purpose of your visit is cancelled by the host you can come home and claim the cost of rearranging your flights.

The university has decided to cancel my trip not the host, can I make a claim?

Unfortunately we are unable to claim for flights or hotels through the Insurers as this is considered as 'disinclination to travel'.

Please check with the travel management company if any costs can be reimbursed.