Finance Division

Travel Insurance

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

Authorisation of Travel

International travel is at the discretion of Heads of School or Division and requires their approval or the approval of a member of staff to whom this authority has been delegated. Details can be found on the Health & Safety Covid-19 Resources webpage.

This is due to the potential costs of repatriation in an emergency during the current Covid-19 pandemic. There is limited cover for travel disruption (cancellation, curtailment or change of itinerary) due to Covid-19. Medical expenses and medical repatriation due to Covid-19 are covered.

For more information please see our Covid-19 and Travel Insurance webpage.

If you are applying for travel cover, you are confirming that your trip has been authorised in accordance with the above.

IF YOUR TRAVEL HAS NOT BEEN AUTHORISED BY YOUR HEAD OF SCHOOL/DIVISION/DELEGATED OTHER, YOU WILL NOT BE INSURED TO TRAVEL.

Eligibility criteria

Criteria for access to the University Travel Insurance scheme remains as follows:

  • Staff and Research post graduates travelling on University business
  • 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
  • Taught post graduates on a field trip or business trip, which is a compulsory part of the course
  • 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.

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Why have Travel Insurance?

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 Cover policy information

For trips commencing on 1 August 2021 onwards you will be covered by U.M. Association Limited (UMAL) and cover details can be found here UMAL Insurance Wording [PDF 576.26KB]

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 3.35MB]

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 cover?

Yes, you will need to arrange travel insurance.

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

Yes, even if you have your own cover.

3. Will the University's Business Travel Cover 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 FinanceServiceDesk@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?

When you travel on University Business outside your Country of Domicile, (or within the Country of Domicile, if an overnight stay and/or travel by air is involved), you are covered by our group Travel scheme administered by U. M. Association Ltd (UMAL). 

The UMAL cover includes the following:

  1. Emergency Medical treatment (including Medical Evacuation) £10,000,000; HOWEVER: **Please note that the cover does not include medical expenses incurred in your Country of Domicile which is defined as the country in which the Person Covered normally resides and has a permanent residence and/or permanent place of business
  2. Personal Liabilities £5,000,000; (excludes liabilities arising from vehicles. If you intend to hire a vehicle you must buy the liability insurance offered by the rental company)
  3. Legal Expenses £25,000
  4. Travel Disruption to a limit of £20,000 (Excludes anything arising from Covid-19)
  5. Baggage and Personal effects to a limit of £10,000
  6. Money to a limit of £2,000

The full summary of cover can be viewed here: University of Sussex Travel Cover Summary 2021 [PDF 660.30KB]

If you require cover for your Study Year Abroad, please speak to the Global Mobility team.

10. Covid-19 - Does the policy cover claims arising from Covid-19?

Please see the Covid-19 and Travel Insurance webpage for more information.

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.
  • There is limited cover due to Covid 19. Please refer to the Covid 19 and Travel Insurance web pages.

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 travel cover?

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. What travel cover 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.

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 travel cover 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 FinanceServiceDesk@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 FinanceServiceDesk@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 you receive confirmation of cover, you will be provided with a document giving the certificate number and contact details for Global Response.

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

23. How do I make a travel cover claim?

Claim forms are available from the UMAL web site: https://umal.co.uk/travel-hub/travel-claims-forms/

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 Cover 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: FinanceServiceDesk@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: FinanceServiceDesk@sussex.ac.uk

Phone: 01273 873934, ext 3934.

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