Latest Department of Further Education Guidance on School Trips

16 November 2021

We are delighted that school trips are back for good. Whether you’re planning an international school trip, or something closer to home, the world is your oyster.

But of course, that doesn’t mean everything is going entirely back to normal. To make sure students don’t miss out, we have made changes in line with the Department of Further Education’s guidance to keep both students and staff safe, and school trips as enjoyable as ever.

What is the latest guidance from the DFE?

From 12th April 2021, the government confirmed schools could resume educational day trips. For example, to museums, galleries, and other educational settings. From 17th May, domestic overnight residential trips were resumed. And on 19th July the Department for Education confirmed international school trips can also go ahead, with schools able to plan and book new school trips abroad from the autumn term.

However, the DFE has stated that any new bookings must have adequate financial protection and travel insurance in place. And all trips must be subject to a full risk assessment, which includes the prevailing public health advice.

In addition, the traffic light system for travellers returning from abroad has now been scrapped and replaced with a simpler travel system comprising of a single red list, but the rules vary depending on the vaccination status of you and your students. You can find all the details here.

What is WST doing differently?

We know you, your students, and your parents & carers will have a lot of questions before deciding to travel post-Covid-19. But rest assured, when you’re ready to book your tour this year, you will receive the following safeguards, provided by STF Travel Sure Insurance, which is backed by ABTA and underwritten by AXA*.

Within 12 weeks prior to departure - Free postponement
When you book a tour for travel in 2021 or 2022, if you wish to postpone and it is within 12 weeks of your departure date, you can do so for free.

Within 21 days of departure - Full refund if your tour is cancelled due to 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.

Flexible Deposits
If you need support with more flexible deposit payment terms then please contact us and we can discuss what will work for you.

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 payment schedule
  • If you cancel as a group. Standard terms and conditions will apply if individual travellers choose to cancel

Your trusted partner

From arranging postponements to processing cancellations and refunds, we’re proud to have remained a trusted travel operator throughout the pandemic. So you, your students, parents, and SLT can gain peace of mind knowing we always do the right thing. Read more about our commitment to being a trusted partner.

Questions? Get in touch

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.

Otherwise, visit our Secondary Tours & Trips page to get planning your international school trip. Or read our guidebook for more information on our Covid-19 promise.