Finance Division

Travel Insurance

On this page you will find guidance on how to apply for travel insurance.

Coronavirus travel disruption and insurance claims

Important: The University is following Foreign & Commonwealth (FCO) and Public Health England (PHE) advice and information can be found on the University guidance webpages

Insurance Policy cover

The University’s travel insurance policy covers unrecoverable flight and accommodation costs if the University or traveller is forced to cancel an Insured Journey as a direct and necessary result of any cause outside the University’s or the traveller’s control. This includes FCO advice and the trip being cancelled by a third party, i.e., a conference organiser.

Cancelling/Curtailing Travel

If you were due to travel to a location that goes against FCO advice, please only cancel your trip when you are within 28 days of the leave date. If your travel date is beyond 28 days, you should of course continue to monitor FCO advice and then you can cancel the travel when you are within 28 days.

Where the FCO are advising against all but essential travel (i.e., everywhere), Aviva would expect students to return home unless they cannot do so due to safety reasons.

Aviva’s cover will remain in place if the student cannot get to the airport (for safety reasons).

Previously booked flights should be rescheduled where possible.

Should you have to cancel or curtail your trip you should contact the airline in the first instance to recoup any costs and then contact the Insurance Department via the Finance Servicedesk: rt-finance-servicedesk@sussex.ac.uk

Booking Travel

If you are due to travel in the future, please do not book at this stage. Please wait until you absolutely have to, and where possible book your flights and accommodation on a flexible basis. Doing so will mean you should be more likely to recover any flight and accommodation costs if the trip has to be cancelled.

What is covered by the Insurance Policy

If the FCO changed/upgraded their advice regarding the destination of a trip to advising against ‘all’ or ‘all but essential’ travel after the trip was booked and the trip has been cancelled or curtailed as a result, then the travel and accommodation costs which have been paid and cannot be recovered elsewhere, can be claimed for under the University’s Travel Insurance policy (subject to T&Cs of the policy), if you have applied for the insurance cover.  

If the sole purpose of a trip is specifically cancelled by a Third Party (e.g. a conference is cancelled by the organisers or a client cancels a meeting) and is not cancelled by the University, then cancellation cover may apply to any non-refundable travel or accommodation costs which have been incurred. However, before insurers will consider the claim, the traveller will have to evidence that the cancelled event or meeting was the sole purpose of the trip, was called off by the organisers and not by, or at the instigation (part or full), of the University or its traveller; and that the costs have not been recoverable from the respective Travel/Accommodation providers.

What is not covered by the Insurance Policy
  1. If the FCO do not change their advice in regard to travel to a specific location but the University or travellers choose not to travel due to Coronavirus concerns, then this will be regarded as disinclination to travel and unrecoverable travel and accommodation costs will not be covered under the University’s Travel insurance policy.
  2. Insurers will not be liable for any claim for Cancellation, Curtailment or Change of Itinerary resulting from Regulations made by any Government or public authority, for example where a country is not allowing UK travellers to enter, or where they are implementing quarantine measures. 
  3. If you are returning due to FCO guidance and did not already have a return flight booked, the new flight would not be covered by the insurance, as you would have incurred this cost anyway.
Making a Claim

If you have applied for the University’s Insurance Policy via Sussex Direct, you may ask Insurers to consider a claim.  Aviva will review each claim on its own merits and confirm cover once they have reviewed the circumstances.

To make a claim, please email AvivaTravelClaims@cegagroup.com and copy in rt-finance-servicedesk@sussex.ac.uk. Insurers will require the following information:

  • Policy Number – 100005157GPA
  • Travel Insurance application number (from Sussex Direct): TI/……..
  • Your name, occupation, date of birth and home address 
  • Evidence of travel dates (invoice, travel itinerary or boarding passes)
  • Purpose of trip or travel
  • Reason for cancellation plus supporting documentation

Please contact your Travel provider in the first instance to recoup any costs.

Further Questions

Please email: rt-finance-servicedesk@sussex.ac.uk 

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Travel insurance is a mandatory requirement for all University business travel that involves either an overseas trip, or an overnight stay if in the UK. Members of staff or students must arrange travel insurance through the University - the University will not fund privately arranged travel insurance.

This allows us to ensure a standard scope and level of cover and essential services to travellers in an emergency, including location record and emergency response, support and repatriation, and meet our duty of care obligations to staff and students.

If your travel involves high-risk destinations or exceeds 12 months, your application will be referred to the Insurance Manager before cover can be arranged.

The Overseas Travel Safety and Security Risk Assessment (OTSSRA) is a Health and Safety document, owned by the Health and Safety Division.  Any questions regarding completion of the OTSSRA should be directed to: HealthSafety@sussex.ac.uk

Any risk assessments, including the OTSSRA, must be undertaken and retained by the School/Division in the usual manner.

How to apply for travel insurance

Travel insurance applications for staff and post graduates are completed online via Sussex Direct. Once you have logged in to Sussex Direct:

  • Navigate to 'Admin' and 'Travel Insurance'
  • Click 'New application'
  • Select whether you are applying for individual or group travel insurance
  • Complete the form - including your travel dates, destinations and the purpose of your trip. You will need to declare that you are authorised to travel and that a risk assessment has been undertaken
  • Click 'Submit'
  • The details of insurance cover will be sent to you automatically by email and your School or Professional Services Division will be notified that cover is in place for the trip.  

Students undertaking a 'Study Abroad' year must contact the Study Abroad department.

Travel insurance policy information

Aviva Business Travel Policy Wording 

Associated documents and policies

OTSSRA Risk Assessment Form [DOCX 27.48KB]

Fieldwork Policy

Travel and Working Away from Base, Hospitality and Out of Pocket Expenses Guide [PDF 3.82MB]

Travel, Working Away from Base, Hospitality and Out of Pocket Expenses e-learning

FAQs

1. I am going on a trip, do I need travel insurance?

Yes, you will need to arrange travel insurance.

2. Do I need to apply for the University's business travel insurance?

Yes, even if you have your own cover.

3. Will the University's Business Travel Insurance Policy cover me?

The University Business Travel Insurance Policy covers:

  1. Staff and research post graduates travelling abroad on University business, or within the UK where the trip involves an overnight stay on University business.
  2. All undergraduates on a field trip organised by the University and accompanied by University staff, and which is a compulsory part of the students' degree course.
  3. Taught post graduates on a field trip or business trip, which is a compulsory part of the course.
  4. Emeritus Professors where they are employed as Associate Tutors or Research Collaborators and/or using devolved University funds or School funds for travel, with the authorisation of the Head of School.

There is no cover for staff who are over 80 years of age.

4. Does the policy cover UK trips?

Yes, where the trip involves an overnight stay or an aerial flight .

5. How do I apply?

You can apply online via Sussex Direct. Please see the instructions at the top of this page. If you have any issues when applying, please contact the Finance Service Desk at rt-finance-servicedesk@sussex.ac.uk.

6. The 'Admin' tab doesn't show up on my Sussex Direct account. What should I do?

Please contact the IT Service Desk to arrange set up. Alternatively, your School Co-ordinator may be able to complete the application on your behalf.  

7. When should I apply?

You should make your application when travel is first booked and paid for, thereby ensuring cancellation cover is in place. Ideally, applications should be made at least 10 days before your trip commences.

8. Do I need to complete an Overseas Travel Safety and Security Risk Assessment?

The OTSSRA is a Health and Safety document, owned by the Health and Safety Division. Any questions regarding completion of the OTSSRA should be directed to: HealthSafety@sef.fm

Any risk assessments, including the OTSSRA, must be undertaken and retained by the School or Division in the usual manner.

9. What does the policy cover?

The Aviva Insurance Policy provides cover for following main events:

  • Emergency Medical treatment is unlimited; (excluding medical expenses incurred in your Country of Residence where you have access to a national scheme or private health insurance.  Country of Residence is defined as the country in which the Insured Person has resided for the last 12 months or more)
  • Personal Liabilities £5,000,000; (excluding liabilities arising from vehicles.   If you intend to hire a vehicle you must buy the liability insurance offered by the rental company)
  • Legal Expenses £50,000;
  • Cancellation and curtailment to a limit of £10,000;
  • Baggage and Personal effects to a limit of £10,000 (£3,000 single item);
  • Money to a limit of £5,000; (cash limit £3000)
  • Rescue/Assistance is unlimited

The full policy document can be viewed here.

10. What insurance do I need if I hire a car abroad or in the UK?

If you intend to hire a vehicle you must buy the liability insurance offered by the rental company. You should also refer to the University’s Health & Safety Driving at Work Policy.

11. Is anything not covered by the policy?
  • You must not be travelling against medical advice or for the purposes of obtaining medical treatment
  • Suicide or attempted suicide or self-inflicted injury are not covered.
12. What if I have an existing medical condition?

If you have an existing medical condition, you will still be covered by the policy but you must be fit to fly and must not be travelling against medical advice. Please note: the Medical Expenses section covers emergency treatment, it does not cover routine or follow-up appointments or prescriptions.

13. Are there any countries which are not covered by the insurance?

The following countries are not covered and require prior notification and agreement by Insurers:

  1. Afghanistan
  2. Iran
  3. Iraq
  4. Libya
  5. Mali
  6. Niger
  7. Nigeria
  8. North Korea
  9. Somalia
  10. Syria
  11. Yemen

In addition, we must give prior notification to Insurers when travelling to any region where the Foreign and Commonwealth office have issued an advisory notice against ALL travel to the region. You can see the FCO advice here.

If you submit an application for travel to any of the above areas, your application will be referred to the Insurance Manager for special consideration. Insurance cover will not be in force until such time as you receive confirmation from the Insurance Manager.

14. Am I covered for medical expenses in my country of residence?

The insurance policy does not cover medical expenses incurred in your Country of Residence where you have access to a national scheme or private health insurance. Country of Residence is defined as the country in which the Insured Person has resided for the last 12 months or more.

15. Is my spouse and/or family covered?

Cover can be provided for your spouse/partner if they are accompanying you on a trip. Employees must meet the cost of the travel insurance for children themselves - it cannot be met from University funds.

16. What if I am doing some personal travel in conjunction with the business trip?

If you stay on in a location for a few days after a business trip, this should be covered by the insurance policy as long as the holiday element of the trip does not exceed the business element of the trip. Please make sure you give all relevant dates in your application.

17. What is the maximum duration the insurance will cover?

If your trip is in excess of 12 months we must notify our Insurers and there may be a requirement to supply further information and an additional premium may be applied. If you submit an application for travel which is over 12 months, your application will be referred to the Insurance Manager for special consideration.

18. I've made a mistake on the application form. How do I amend it?

Please email rt-finance-insurance@sussex.ac.uk.

19. What do I do if I need to extend my trip?

Please reapply online via Sussex Direct, giving your additional travel dates.

20. What do I do if I forget to apply?

You must still complete your application after your trip has commenced, completing your travel details retrospectively, to ensure cover is put in place as soon as possible.

21. What if my plans change and I do not travel?

Please email rt-finance-insurance@sussex.ac.uk and your application will be amended to reflect that you did not travel. If you have had to cancel your trip for reasons beyond your control, you may be able to make a cancellation claim. Please refer to the FAQ entitled 'How do I make an insurance claim?'.

22. What do I do in a medical emergency?

When the insurance cover is confirmed by email, you will be provided with a document giving the policy number and the contact details for Aviva Emergency Assistance. The Emergency contact number is: +44 (0)1243 621066. 

Important: You should keep the Emergency Assistance information to hand at all times.

23. How do I make an insurance claim?

Information on how to claim, and the information you will need to provide in support of your claim, can be found here.

Contact numbers:

  • Emergency Medical Assistance Number: +44 (0)1243 621 066
  • Non Emergency Claims: +44 (0)1243 621 416
  • Advice Before You Travel: +44(0)1243 621 556

For non-urgent claims, or advice, please contact the Insurance Manager on 01273 873934 or email rt-finance-insurance@sussex.ac.uk.

24. Do I need permission to travel?

You may only apply for travel insurance if you are authorised to travel by the Head of School or Director of Professional Service, or under authority delegated by the Head of School or Director of Professional Service for the approval of travel in your School or Division.

25. Can I get an annual Travel Insurance Policy?

It is not possible to get an annual policy to cover multiple trips. It is essential that the University's travel pattern is accurately captured so you must apply for each individual trip.

26. Do I need to do anything else?

You should ensure that you have completed the necessary Risk Assessments for your trip in accordance with the University’s Fieldwork Policy.

You should check the Foreign and Commonwealth website before you travel.

Who to Contact

If you need more help, you can contact the Finance Service Desk by email or phone.

Email: rt-finance-servicedesk@sussex.ac.uk. Use your University of Sussex email account and quote your University IT System login username.

Phone: 01273 877172, ext 7172. Telephone support is available for urgent enquiries from 8.30am to 5pm.

For insurance critical issues, contact the Insurance Office:

Email: rt-finance-insurance@sussex.ac.uk

Phone: 01273 873934, ext 3934.

For information on property, computer, liability and motor insurance visit the Insurance web pages.