Find out about future study and work abroad opportunities in Europe, post-Brexit, and the implications for immigration, funding and insurance.
Future study and work in Europe
Following the UK’s departure from the European Union, the UK government has decided not to participate in the next Erasmus programme (2021-2027).
Participation in Erasmus will be replaced by the new £100 million Turing Scheme. Through this scheme, UK universities will be able to support 35,000 student work and study placements across the world, with priority support for disadvantaged students.
Erasmus+ funding available until 2023
The UK government’s decision not to participate in the 2021-27 Erasmus+ programme does not affect the UK’s participation in the current Erasmus+ programme (2014 – 2020).
The University of Edinburgh will continue to participate in the current Erasmus+ programme until the end of our 2020 project, which has been extended until May 2023. This means that all current and planned activities taking place under the current Erasmus+ scheme will continue to be eligible for Erasmus+ funding.
We will continue to support students undertaking Erasmus+ activities during 2021/22 via use of our existing Erasmus+ funds.
The new Turing Scheme
The Turing Scheme is the UK's new global programme for study and work abroad. The University of Edinburgh intends to fully participate in the new Turing Scheme to seek to provide the required support and funding for international work and study placements for our students, and particularly for those students who have mandatory periods abroad as part of their programme of study.
Under the Turing Scheme, UK organisations with successful applications will receive funding towards delivering placements and exchanges. This will include providing participants with grants to help cover travel expenses and costs of living, and administrative funding for delivering the projects. The rates provided will be broadly in line with what has been on offer under Erasmus+.
Changes to immigration and visa requirements
The end of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020 brings with it changes to immigration rules for UK citizens travelling to/residing in the EU/EEA/Switzerland.
UK nationals will be eligible to stay in the EU for no more than 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa. If you intend to stay in the EU for more than 90 days, you will require a visa to stay in your host country. The immigration rules for each of the 27 EU member states will apply (except for Ireland, where Common Travel Area arrangements will be applicable).
Students should be aware that leaving their host country, even temporarily, might affect their immigration status (and ability to return to their host country).
You are advised to check the validity of your passport well in advance of travel. It should cover the full duration of your placement abroad, and we recommend it should be valid for at least 6 months after your planned return date.
If you need evidence of your student status, placement dates, financial support or insurance cover, a 'Confirmation of Erasmus+ Status' letter will be available to print off from your Mobility-Online workflow.
Find out more about visa and entry requirements for your host country
Immigration and visa enquiries
University of Edinburgh staff are not qualified or permitted to answer specific visa/immigration queries and cannot be held responsible for issues that might arise due to a lack of compliance with immigration regulations.
All queries about visa and immigration requirements for UK citizens should be directed to the local embassy/consulate in your destination country and your prospective host institution.
If you are an EU citizen and have questions about how your placement will impact your immigration status in the UK, please refer to the Student Immigration website.
All Erasmus+ and Swiss mobility students will be covered, free of charge, by University of Edinburgh travel insurance for the duration of their study or work placement. This insurance covers you for emergencies abroad during your placement.
You may be required to take out additional private medical insurance for any routine treatment or pre-existing medical conditions, as the University’s travel insurance does not provide cover for these. You may also be charged to access GP surgeries and medicine in your host country.
Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC)
UK students going to the EU are advised to obtain a student Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) which is a replacement of the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). You can find detailed information about how to apply for a GHIC card on the NHS website.
You should refer to the section "UK students going to the EU". Please note that there is a specific student GHIC card which is different from the standard one. You will need to download the Erasmus+ status letter from your Mobility Online workflow which has all the information you need to apply for your GHIC through the NHS.
The GHIC gives you the right to access emergency state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay in the EU and enables you to get state healthcare in Europe at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. Not all state healthcare is free in the EU and you may have to pay for services that you’d get for free on the NHS. You'll have to pay the same as a patient from that country.
If you already have a UK European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) it will be valid until the expiry date on the card. Once it expires, you’ll need to apply for a GHIC to replace it. However, you should check the visa requirements of your host country to ensure that the EHIC is accepted - some countries now only accept the GHIC.
Find out more about the GHIC and healthcare in the EU
- Find out more about the GHIC, including how to apply for one, on the NHS website
- Read the UK Government’s healthcare guidance for UK nationals visiting the EU