Travel updates and guidance

Risk assessment

Guidance on risk assessments and submission deadlines.

Update 15th July 2021

Following the UK Government’s announcement that, from 19th July, the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) will no longer advise against travel to amber countries, the University Executive has agreed to approve travel, where possible, for students who wish to undertake their planned mandatory and optional study and work abroad activities in 2021/22.    

The University Executive has agreed that students who would like to proceed on an exchange, work placement or traineeship can do so where travel guidance permits, on condition that a thorough risk assessment process is undertaken prior to departure.  

Risk assessment process

The risk assessment form will be made available to you on your Mobility Online pipeline if and when you are eligible to submit one.  International work placements students will be invited to submit a risk assessment via InPlace.  You should complete the risk assessment as soon as possible after being instructed to do so. 

The risk assessment consists of two stages. Both stages must be approved for your activity to go ahead. 

Risk assessment - stage 1 

In stage one, you will need to provide evidence of: 

  • FCDO travel advice for your host country 

  • entry requirements for your host country

  • whether your host country is currently in lockdown and/or a state of emergency 

  • your host institution's acceptance of you to study in person 

  • risk assessment of the activity you plan to undertake

  • your overall health and wellbeing, and how you plan to manage any conditions whilst abroad 

  • how your mental health might be impacted whilst abroad and what coping mechanisms you could put in place

You should also review the international travel regulations and restrictions in the country you are departing from (and any countries you may be stopping over in). 

Once SWAY has approved your stage 1 risk assessment, you will automatically receive University insurance cover and will be authorised to make your travel and accommodation arrangements.  You should not book travel or accommodation until you are authorised to do so by SWAY.  

You can view an example of the stage 1 risk assessment below (not for completion): 

Risk assessment - stage 2

You will then be given access to stage 2 of the risk assessment.  This will require you to confirm your travel and accommodation arrangements. 

In stage two you need to provide evidence of: 

  • the accommodation you have in place for your time abroad. (Note: this must be long-term accommodation for the duration of your placement (i.e. not a short-term hotel/hostel) and should be provided or approved by your host) 

  • your return flights (for both the outbound and inbound journeys) that you book for your destination  

You can view an example of the stage 2 risk assessment below (not for completion): 

Completing your risk assessment

Read through the guide on how to complete your risk assessment


Deadlines for submitting risk assessments

Stage 1 risk assessments should be submitted as early as possible, and at least one month before your activity start date.   

Stage 2 risk assessments must be submitted at least 1 week before your outward travel date.  

SWAY will aim to process risk assessments in 5 working days; however, please note that during peak periods it may take longer.  

Revocation of approval to travel   

Changes to FCDO guidance (e.g. if there is high risk alert in your host country), your host country’s entry requirements, or your host institution’s ability to accept you in person may impact on your approval to travel. 

If approval to travel is revoked after your risk assessment has been approved, you will be covered under University insurance for any bookings made after the approval decision was given.  

 In this case, you should also liaise with your exchange coordinator and/or personal tutor about alternative study arrangements.

Changes to FCDO guidance after you travel

If FCDO travel restrictions change once you are abroad, we would only recall you if there was a significant risk to your health and/or safety.