We understand that you may have a number of questions or concerns around areas such as booking guidelines, safety measures or insurance queries for travel in the future. Our FAQs will provide you with more information to support your planning.

Is it ok to start planning a trip?

The DfE recognises the significant benefits of educational visits for children’s educational development, as well as their mental health and wellbeing. They are taking steps to allow pupils to enjoy visits in line with the government’s roadmap.

The roadmap is driven by data, not dates. The government will only move from one step to the next when it is safe to do so and based on 4 tests. For that reason, all dates are indicative and subject to change. This advice has now been updated to reflect the Prime Minister’s announcement regarding Step 3. Advice will continue to be updated in line with the roadmap.

The latest guidance from the DfE confirms the following key points when planning your school trip:

  • 12th April – Domestic educational day visits can resume
  • 17th May – Domestic residential visits can resume
  • New bookings can be made for domestic residential educational visits from 10th May
  • It is not recommended that schools go on any international visits this academic year up to and including 5 September 2021. Further guidance is expected.

Further information from the DfE can be found here

We see these as positive but sensible steps. As the term goes on we will await further guidance and working alongside ABTA, the DfE, STF, LOtC and OEAP and we are looking forward to the time when we can offer you a trip to suit your needs.

You can start planning with a tour operator at a time that suits you, whether that’s now or in the future. At WST, we will discuss itinerary, accommodation and transport, along with any concerns you may have regarding safety, before providing you with a quotation. This will give you an idea of cost and content to share with SLT, students and parents. A quotation does not put you under any obligation and is a good way to gauge interest.

Once you know if you have interest and permission to travel you can provisionally hold services, still at no obligation. As many groups postponed due to Covid-19 and interest is starting for 2021 and 2022, availability of accommodation at key dates will become an issue. As transport services come on sale, demand will dictate price increases. So, our advice is to make a provisional booking as soon as possible, so you can avoid price increases and secure your preferred suppliers.

For peace of mind take a look at our Book With Confidence Promise

Parents are more nervous now at the thought of sending their children on a school trip. How can we support them?

We can provide you with a power point covering all planning details that we can tailor make to your trip and your group of parents. You can then send this as an attachment on your school portal for interested parties.

Our advice is to give them as much information as possible. Gather together their questions and concerns and talk to us. We will support you in answering these concerns. The landscape of travel is changing rapidly at the moment and we may not have all the answers on the spot but we will find out and come back to you.  

If you would like to talk through with a member of our team face to face, we can arrange a video call with you so we can cover your requirements and questions in more detail.

I usually take a trip to a city but I’m worried about the safety issues in this destination.

We can discuss with you a range of destinations that are less busy and can provide smaller hotels, visits with more open spaces etc that can minimise risk, but where you will still get the same level of education value balanced with bonding and wellbeing.

I usually take a trip abroad that supports our learning objectives, but I’m worried about safety issues around leaving the country

We have developed new learning experiences in a range of locations around the UK that can still support learning objectives whilst not travelling too far away from home. Ask us for more information.

Will our money be insured if we are no longer able to travel due to travel restrictions with Covid-19?

If as an educational Tour Operator we are liable for the cancellation of your tour, in the first instance we will offer you the chance to postpone and we will work through a series of suitable alternatives for you and your group.

Alternatively, if you are not able to postpone and as a Tour Operator we are liable for the cancellation, you will be issued with a refund credit note for the full value of your tour, which is financially protected by ABTA. If these options are not suitable for you and if we are liable under Package Travel Regulations, then we will arrange a full refund.

We advise that you check your school RPA business insurance cover before booking a trip as in many instances they will provide cover for this.

For peace of mind take a look at our Book With Confidence Promise, along with the T&Cs.

What will happen if a pupil or teacher develops symptoms on tour?

We provide 24 hour emergency support so, if you contact us should this happen we will work with you to agree the best solution for you. Our current travel insurance covers contraction of Covid-19 whilst on tour. If you have your own travel insurance we advise you to check this prior to travel.

How will we know the rules on social distancing in our destination?

We are in regular contact with our suppliers in all our destinations who are keeping us updated with their local regulations. We are also following the FCDO and government advice closely. As the social distancing rules are evolving, we can give you information on an ongoing basis with final confirmation on social distancing in your destination closer to your departure date.

What safety measures are airlines and airports taking?

All airports are working hard to ensure all travellers are informed of regulations. See this example from London Heathrow.

We will keep you updated with their procedures throughout your booking process, with final confirmation on social distancing in the UK and your destination airport closer to your departure date.

All of our flight tours include a UK airport representative to support you at check in and to meet you on arrival. They will be fully briefed on airport guidelines and will provide you with extra assistance.

What safety measures are Eurotunnel and ferry companies taking?

Eurotunnel and P&O are working hard to ensure all travellers are informed of regulations. As an example please see the latest information from Eurotunnel and P&O Ferries.

We can give you information from them on an on going basis with final confirmation on social distancing whilst travelling with Eurotunnel or ferry closer to your departure date.

What will be the safety rules on board a coach?

Instructions for safety on board coaches for schools are evolving at the moment. We will be ensuring that all our coach suppliers comply with the guidelines set out by the DfE prior to departure and will keep you informed of this. We will issue you in advance with the safety rules of the coach company taking your tour.

Will our money be insured if we are no longer able to travel due to travel restrictions with Covid-19?

If your trip is affected by Covid restrictions within 21 days of travel and you are unable to postpone, we will give you a full refund.

Full Refund Applies Only:

  • If school/college RPA / Government backed indemnity insurance will not cover your claim
  • To bookings made before 31st July 2021 for travel from 1st September 2021
  • If you are due to travel within the next 21 days
  • If the FCDO advise against travel to your destination
  • Quarantine is required upon arriving in your destination or upon returning home from your destination
  • If local or national lockdowns in the UK prevent your departure
  • If there are local restrictions in your destination that will impact on the main purpose of your tour
  • If you have adhered to the deposit payment schedule
  • If you cancel as a group. Standard terms and conditions will apply if individual travellers choose to cancel

We advise that you check your school RPA business insurance cover before booking a trip as in many instances they will provide cover for this.