Overseas Travel Procedures

Guide to overseas travel procedures and risk assessment

Basic procedural outline

  • You should log your trip on the travel log as soon as you have booked travel and accommodation
  • For low/medium risk travel (defined below), please do this at least 48 hours before travel.
  • For high risk travel (defined below), you must also complete a travel risk assessment as well as the travel log at least 14 days before departure.
  • For extreme risk or travel to prohibited areas, please contact the university insurance officer or the Director of Health, Safety, and Security at least 28 days before travel.  This has to be signed off by the DSO (Dave Hay), the HoD and the Director of Health, Safety and Security.

Prohibited travel locations

Prohibited areas are currently:

Afghanistan
Iran
Iraq
Libya
Mali
Niger
Nigeria
North Korea
Somalia
Syria
Yemen

Low risk travel

Most trips on University business present a low risk, equivalent to most trips within the UK, and so there is no requirement to prepare a specific risk assessment for your travel. However, when completing the online Travel Log you must still acknowledge that you have considered the risks.

Low risk trips would typically involve travel to North America, Central or Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand to attend conferences, or visit colleagues at other organisations. Host organisations are responsible for your safety and should have appropriate safety provision in place.

Medium risk travel

If you are travelling to a destination that is within a medium risk category and/or you are carrying out a medium risk activity, then you will be required to complete a written risk assessment. The Health, Safety and Security Office do not require a copy of the risk assessment but it should be available if required by insurers in the event of a claim. In this case, please send a copy of your risk assessment to me.

High/Extreme risk travel

If you are travelling to a destination that is within a high/extreme risk category and/or you are carrying out a higher risk activity, then you will be required to complete a written risk assessment. Please send a copy of your completed risk assessment to insurance-enquiries@york.ac.uk.  The assessment must be signed off by the DSO (Dave Hay).

Travel Log

Please note that when completing your travel log, tick the box (low, medium or high risk) which applies only to the location you are travelling to. This rating does not take into account your activities whilst there. If you are performing any of the operations below, you will also need to submit a detailed and separate risk assessment to the DSO (Dave Hay).


To obtain University Business Insurance for foreign travel a specific risk assessment must be prepared for the following activities:

  • All fieldwork outside of the UK
  • All student placements
  • All trips to countries where the FCO advises against all but essential travel or advises against travel at all - please do not book tickets and/or accommodation to these areas until you have gained permission to travel - this has to be signed off by the DSO (Dave Hay), the HoD and the Director of Health, Safety and Security.
  • All other trips where there are specific health and safety concerns

    This applies to work carried out by:
    • staff working alone or with colleagues
    • students and staff as part of a course of study
    • students carrying out research, either alone or with others
    • students on work placement.

Further information

Please check both the FCO and Red 24 websites for details when travelling and filling in travel logs and risk assessments. Red 24 in particular is the source of information used by our insurers.  If you need to register with Red 24, please ask Dave Hay for details.

by WSDOT, Flickr