Planning a Society Trip

Tips for Planning your Society Trip!

Trips include any of the following, where travel and/or accommodation are involved:

  • Cultural visits 
  • Cultural visits including performance
  • Sporting tours 
  • Activity Trips 
  • Skiing trips 
  • Volunteering 

Planning your Trip 

The Checklist 

  1. Work out the approximate cost of the trip using one of our budget templates and also think about the risks involved with your trip.
  2. Gauge the interest from members to calculate expected number of attendees and therefore, cost. 
  3. Once a budget is approved, set a date for people wanting to go and ensure a deposit is in place by this time – a suggested deposit is £50 or 25% of the ticket price.  
  4. Make sure attendees have been informed that they should have adequate travel insurance. 
    • Did you know most policies will not cover drink or drug-related incidents?
    • Medical and health cover for an injury or sudden illness abroad is essential 
    • 24-hour emergency service and assistance are essential 
  5. Know what is covered; know the exclusions. 
  6. Make sure you have a working mobile number while abroad that every person is aware of.
  7. When you arrive, let someone know you’re there safe, including the Activities Team

If you’re going on a Trip Abroad you’ll also need to consider:

  1. Look at the FCO travel advice. Note if UK Government advises no or non-essential travel to the trip destination the trip cannot proceed. 
  2. Look at National Travel Health Network
  3. Check that attendees have:
    • A valid and in-date passport (check the FCO advice about the exact requirements). Also ask them to take a photocopy of their passport and give it to trip leaders. 
    • No Visa restriction issues
    • A European Health Card
  4. Completed a Medical Questionnaire to include any medication being taken. Any injecting diabetics will need a letter from their doctor in order to have hypodermic needles in the cabin if flying. 
    • Made sure anyone taking regular medication has a photocopy of their prescription – easier to replace any lost medication. 
    • Enquired to ensure their medication is legal in the transit and destination countries 
    • Any serious allergies e.g. peanuts  
    • No special requirements or that the special requirement can be accommodated e.g. separate male/female sleeping, access difficulties requiring ground floor accommodation etc. 
  5. What experience of the country do you have?
    • Are you familiar with laws & customs? 
    • You must comply with local laws and these can be very different from what we are used to in the UK. Behaviour acceptable in the UK may be unacceptable or even illegal. 
    • Who on the trip can speak the language?
    • Are you planning to use phrase/guidebooks?
    • Do you have enough experience to make the trip enjoyable and safe? 

Organising a trip via a Tour Operator 

Read through the offer carefully; note whether payment is owed as a single payment via the society or by individual students. 

Contracts are to be reviewed by the Activities Team before being signed. This is for your protection; remember student group committee members are responsible for any deficient. 

Tour operator organised trips will be classed as standard events and not TOMS events. This means any income will be charged VAT as usual.

Keeping your trip safe 

As trip Organisers, it is your responsibility to keep your trip safe for both yourselves as organisers and for your attendees as well. 

There are three stages to keeping your trip safe: 

  • Before the event – this happens at the budgeting and planning stages. 
  • Risk Assessment – this incorporates all the safety measures you have planned. 
  • On the trip – following the pre-planned risk assessment to keep everyone safe. 

Risk Assessments 

Trips will require either the UK Trip or Trip Abroad Form to be completed with the details of your trip.  You may not be able to complete the attendee details at this stage however these can be submitted after tickets have been sold. 

On the Trip 

On the trip – you need to simply follow the risk assessment to the letter and use your common sense for example on public transport follow the safety rules and instructions from staff. If you have any concerns whilst on your trip either email us or call us on 01392 725060. 

Advice for Societies Travelling to Europe in the event of a no-deal Brexit 

Please make sure you have read this advice and shared all relevant information with your members in advance of your trip. You must also meet with a member of Activities Staff to confirm your understanding of this advice.

This is up-to-date as of January 2019. If the advice changes significantly, the page will be updated accordingly.

For general advice on the EU and Brexit, please see the Univeristy's official guidance at


  • Make sure all of your members have checked their passports are valid for travel to Europe. The new rules will apply to passports issued by the UK, Gibraltar, Guernsey, the Isle of Man and Jersey. 

  • The rules for travel in the event of a no-deal Brexit are: 

  • You should have at least 6 months left on your passport from your date of arrival. 

  • If you renewed a passport before it expired, extra months may have been added onto your new passport’s expiry date. Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the 6 months that should be remaining for travel to most countries in Europe. 

  • You can check your passport is valid at 

  • You shouldn’t have a problem getting back into the UK as long as your UK passport is valid 

  • If a member has a non-UK and non-EU passport, they should take any visa and immigration paperwork they would normally need to enter the UK. 

  • If a member has an EU passport, they shouldn’t need any additional documents to get back into the UK.  

  • The European Commission has proposed that in a no-deal situation, if you are a British Citizen, you would not need a visa for short stays in the Schengen area, or elsewhere in the EU.

  • If the UK leaves the EU without a deal on 29 March 2019, your access to healthcare when visiting an EU country is likely to change. Your EHIC card may no longer be valid. 

  • All members need to buy their own travel insurance (including personal health insurance), just as they would if visiting a non-EU country, so they can access healthcare if necessary. 


  • Contact your coach company to check your driver will be able to drive abroad in the event of a no-deal Brexit. Current UK Government advice is that from 28 March 2019 drivers from the UK will need extra documentation to drive in the EU and EAA.  In the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal, UK drivers may also need an international driving permit (IDP) to drive in the EU and EEA. 

  • UK students can drive legally in Europe as an extension to our UK licences . This will lapse on 29th March, so minibus drivers/hire car drivers need to have a new licence to drive on the 30th and beyond. Applications for this new licence currently have a 6 week lead time. 

General Advice 

  • Contact Activities in advance of your trip to check that our contact information for your trip leaders is correct and up-to-date. 

  • Ensure your trip leaders have access to a portable phone charger in case of long journeys and delays, so you are always contactable. 

  • Make sure all members take enough water and food in case of long delays.

Useful Information Sources 

University of Exeter Students' Guild is a Charity and Company Limited by Guarantee. Registered Charity Number: 1136468 Company Number: 07217324; registered in England and Wales Registered office: Devonshire House, Stocker Road, Exeter, EX4 4PZ