Health and safety


If you have any health concerns, you should discuss these with you GP prior to departure, and ensure you seek advice if you have any prescriptions which may need renewed while you are abroad.  If possible, ask your doctor for a letter to explain any medications you need to take with you. You should check that your medication is legal in the country you are visiting. 

Please ensure that you have all necessary vaccinations before you go. Please remember that some immunisations must be obtained well in advance of travel, so you should investigate this as soon as you know you are going.

See the Department of Health website for further information and general health advice for travellers.

Students travelling to Asia and South America – Zika virus

ZIKV is a dengue-like virus that is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, most commonly Aedes aegypti. The infection often occurs without symptoms but can also cause an illness similar to dengue. The Zika outbreak is affecting parts of South America and Asia.  Students travelling to these areas should take the necessary precautions. You should follow the advice of the National Travel Health Network and Centre and discuss your travel plans with your healthcare provider, particularly if you’re pregnant or planning to become pregnant.


The majority of students will enjoy their study abroad without incident. However, it is important that you take the same safety precautions while studying abroad as you would do in any new city, and be alert and observant. You may wish to consult the general student safety information.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has very helpful online travel guides by country; these include information on entry, local laws and customs, health and safety. It's a good idea to get a reliable guide book as well, and find out as much as you can about your destination.

Natural disasters

Prior to travel, you should research whether your host country is subject to natural disasters, such as earthquakes or hurricanes.  This is particularly important if you are travelling to a country such as New Zealand, where earthquakes can be common. The FCO country guides can provide helpful information regarding adverse weather conditions.  However, you may also wish to refer to the following pages:

Top tips

  • Remember to photocopy all of your important documents (including your passport) and leave the copies at home in safe hands.
  • Keep a note of the University's out of hours details.
  • Keep a note of the University's Insurance details.
  • Be aware of consular assistance available in your host country.
  • Don't carry all your bank/ credit cards with you when you're there - leave one in a secure location.

In the event of any international incidents, the University will follow UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advice. The safety of students on external programmes is our primary concern.