Travel and accommodation
When travelling outside the UK, we advise you and your institution to take the following precautions in case you need to leave your placement country at short notice:
- Before you travel, consult the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website for foreign travel advice. For travel to European cities, we advise you to keep checking the security status of your destination.
- If you experience any disruption to your travel or accommodation arrangements please contact your sending institution for advice and support in the first instance.
- Make sure you have enough money to cover emergencies and any unexpected delays.
- Ensure you have more than one means of payment with you (cash, debit card, credit card).
- Carry a copy of your passport or other photographic ID which confirms your nationality at all times.
- Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.
- Where possible ensure you have a return ticket in advance.
- Stay in touch with the UK institution that has arranged to send you abroad and make sure you have their contact details with you. We recommend you get in touch with your institution for advice and support if you experience any disruption to your travel and accommodation arrangements.
- If you are abroad and need emergency help, please contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission, or your own embassy if you do not have British nationality.
Shop around before booking your flights to find the best deals. Check your baggage allowance before packing, and remember that you should be able to get everything you need in your host town. Alternatively, use one of the companies who specialise in couriering student luggage.
Taking the train will reduce your carbon footprint and Europe has a comprehensive rail network. For information on rail passes covering travel in up to 20 countries, have a look at Eurail. The EU has a guide on your passenger rights when travelling by train.
If you decide to take your car abroad, check that it is properly insured. Regulations and requirements vary between countries. For example, in France the law stipulates that you must always carry a fire extinguisher, approved breathalyser kits, and a high-visibility jacket in your vehicle.
Students - if your university does not arrange accommodation for you, contact your host coordinator in good time before you depart. They will have local knowledge, such as reputable websites to search for rooms available for rent. If possible, arrive a few weeks before the start of term starts to get everything organised, but you can start before you go. Housing Anywhere is a free platform to help exchange students find accommodation.