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If you have a specific query about our school trips, you may be able to find the answer below in our frequently asked questions. For any questions that aren't answered below, feel free to get in touch with one of our expert travel consultants who will be happy to help. 

  • Who are WST?

    WST have been providing educational travel for more than 30 years. Our team have arranged thousands of successful tours for students from schools and colleges across the UK and it is testament that most of our clients come back time and time again. We pride ourselves on giving first class personal service with an unrivalled attention to detail. We fully understand that every single detail matters to you as parents / students and that is why we work closely with the group leaders during the tour planning stages to ensure everyone’s expectations are met.

    Many of our team here at WST are parents themselves and with over 370 years combined experience in educational travel, we fully understand the need to feel that your money is not only secure but also invested into an experience your child will treasure for many years. You will feel reassured in the fact that WST is fully ABTA and ATOL bonded and we are members of the School Travel Forum which regulates safety and service standards, and have been awarded the Learning Outside the Classroom quality badge.

  • Why should I give permission for my child to go on the tour?

    WST provide safe, secure, educational visits that are affordable. Trips away from home help your children develop their sense of independence, learn about a new culture and encourage bonding with their class.

    WST know how valuable these experiences are and that is why we provide high quality trips that are expertly delivered so that your child’s enjoyment of the trip is not spoilt in any way. All the visits we suggest for the itinerary have strong educational content and we recommend the most enjoyable, interactive and hands on visits so your pupils get the most from their time away.

    We know how precious your child is and every element of a WST trip is designed with safety in mind whilst ensuring your child is given the opportunity to “grow” as an individual and experience / develop skills taking them into adult life.

    WST deliver exceptional tours, expertly delivered – why would you send your child with anyone else!

  • How do I keep in contact with my family whilst on tour?

    For most groups that travel, the group leaders will advise on whether or not students are permitted to take mobile phones.

    This is obviously the easiest way to contact your child, however we would advise that when taking mobile phones abroad there are number of things to consider:

    • Those on phone contracts may need to pay significantly higher “roaming” and connection charges for calls and text messages both received and made abroad.

    • The WST Travel Insurance policy (and most other travel policies) does not cover loss, theft or damage of mobile phones. Therefore alternative insurance is required for any mobile phones taken.


    Because of the two issues above, we would actually advise against taking “expensive” mobile phones and other electronic equipment (iPad, gaming equipment etc..), and opt either for a more cost effective “pay as you go” sim card phone or pre-paid telephone cards.

    Advice on what to discuss with your child before they depart:

    • Ensure that your child fully understands that the group leaders / teachers are there to keep them safe – requests / instructions from the teaching staff should be listened and adhered to.

    • They should stay with their group at all times and not be tempted to wonder off on their own – no matter how tempting the view or new dress in the window!

    • Remind them that continental traffic comes from a different direction – time to “look both ways” again! Oncoming traffic will be on the left hand side.

    • They should never go swimming or enter water (rivers, lakes, streams) without permission / instruction from the teachers in charge.

    • Ensure your child is fully aware of the different cultures in Europe and indeed in “city” areas. They should remain respectful at all times and remember that most people understand English (particularly bad language), so please encourage them to avoid causing possible “conflict” with locals.

    • Ensure that they make themselves fully aware of the hotel “rules” on arrival – if they aren’t allowed to use lifts… don’t use the lifts etc.. Please ensure they listen fully to the fire evacuation and other safety procedures when they arrive at the hotel.

    • No smoking or drinking of alcohol is permitted on school tours (without permission off the teacher in charge for older students). Please ensure your child understands, no matter how tempting, drinking / smoking could result in sickness and there is nothing worse than a hangover, particularly on a coach journey!

    • Ensure they are “sensible” with their money whilst on tour.

    Finally, ensure your child is ready to appreciate the experience they are about to undertake. They should be encouraged to challenge themselves academically whilst away and have lots of fun! Like most children before them, they will return with countless memories of their “school tour” and tales to share.

  • What about healthcare in Europe?


    If you are a UK resident, you are entitled to medical treatment that becomes necessary, at reduced cost or sometimes free, when temporarily visiting a European Union (EU) country, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland. Only treatment provided under the state scheme is covered. However, to obtain treatment you will need to take a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with you. Please note: Not all UK residents are covered in Denmark, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland.

    Click this link for further information: https://www.ehic.org.uk/

    Further information regarding healthcare abroad can also be found at: Healthcare Abroad

    Your educational tour normally includes insurance through WST Travel. If the group leader has opted out of our insurance provision, please ensure you view full policy details of your child’s alternative cover. You can view our full travel insurance policy details here

    Take a look at our key travel insurance facts for travelling in Europe

    Take a look at our key travel insurance facts for travelling worldwide

     

  • How much spending money should the children take?

    There is no right or wrong amount, however, we recommend that you set reasonable and affordable levels for all pupils.

  • Can we take iPads/iPhones and other electrical goods?

    You should follow your school’s policy. Don’t forget to check your insurance policy to ensure these items are covered.

  • Are pre-existing medical conditions covered?

    Yes, most are with WST, however some companies won’t cover them. Always check with your insurance company.

  • What should we pack?

    Think about the climate, consider how long you are staying for and insist on comfy walking shoes for everyone. 

    If you're not sure what to take on a school trip, we also have a handy packing checklist for students to make sure they don't leave any important items at home.  

  • What should happen in the event of a terrorist attack?

    These attacks, whilst in the news recently, are relatively rare. If an attack happens in a destination within a week of your travel dates, your tour operator will take advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office. As an experienced tour operator, WST would normally advise against immediate travel (within a few days) irrelevant of the FCO guidance.

    Even when FCO travel restrictions are relaxed, WST will happily work with schools uncomfortable continuing with their original plans.

    WST will endeavour to keep your learning outside the classroom plans on track and where necessary look to change dates or switch destination, often at no extra cost.

    Educational tour operators who are fully STF bonded are bound by high standards of safety management and must have a 24 hour emergency system in place. Should events occur whilst you are on tour, you can be assured of expert advise and support to quickly and effectively place your group in the safest place possible.

    In the event that the FCO advise against travel, STF members are bound by the Package Travel Directive to offer either a full refund or an alternative tour.

  • What happens if there is a disruption to our travel plans i.e strikes at ferry ports?

    Tour operators who offer a 24 hour emergency helpline will able to offer you support and advice around the clock. An efficient tour operator should be able to ensure you carry on with your planned tour by arranging alternative crossings or solutions; providing it is safe to do so.

  • Will my tour price change once I’ve booked?

    You’ll find no hidden surcharges with WST. Our pricing is transparent and honest. In your quotation and provisional booking letters we will tell you what is and is not included in your price. We also fairly estimate any future rates, not falsifying prices to create ‘cheap deals'. Often flights will come on sale after you have confirmed your booking. As we have no way of controlling these prices, we always advise you to build in a contingency should the flight price be higher than our estimate.

  • Will currency changes affect my tour price?

    Our approach is always to protect against currency fluctuation by buying currency as bookings confirm. Once your tour has been booked you will see no adjustments to your tour price because of currency. If currency fluctuates whilst you are at quotation stage, we’ll advise of you of any changes to the tour price before you progress with the booking.

  • What happens if I have students on the trip who are not British Citizens?

    Any children who are not British Citizens will need to have the correct VISA. You can visit https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration for more information.

  • Who is responsible for obtaining the groups Collective Passport?

    You are – we are not able to apply for this passport on your behalf. We advise that this is done as soon as possible as these can take as long as 10 weeks to process through. Further information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/collective-group-passports/overview

  • When do you need the final passport information submitted?

    Final passport information is normally required four weeks prior to your departure, however some airlines may require this as soon as the first point of booking. We are not able to print boarding passes until we have received all passport information.

  • What happens if my flight is delayed?

    We always arrange airport assistance for our customers, so if your flight is delayed your contact at the airport will stay with you, find a location where you can all stay together and work with the airlines to keep you informed. They’ll also contact us so that we can cover any amends to your itinerary.

  • Can you cater for special dietary requirements?

    Provided you give us the information in advance we will work with your accommodation or restaurants on providing vegetarian options and allergy/special dietary requirements.

    We always advise you to double check with the hotel/restaurant when you check-in to reconfirm they understand these requirements. Should you have more specific requirements as a group such as Halal or Kosher food then you must advise of this at enquiry stage and we will research the availability of relevant restaurants before we take your enquiry any further.

  • When will I receive my rooming?

    Rooming will be requested once all forms have been completed and returned to WST (this should be no later than 6 weeks before travel), this will then enable us to finalize your tour to the suppliers and request your rooming list. Ideally your final rooming plan is then supplied to us at least two weeks prior to travel.

  • Do you have specific risk assessments?

    We can provide documents to help you fill in your school trip risk assessments, and we also have generic risk assessments which we can send you to help with the visits. If you would like a specific coach or accommodation audit, we can also email these out to you.