Frequently Asked Questions
- Q: General
- Q: Trip/Travel
- Q: Dublin Visa
- Q: Europe Visa
- Q: Accommodation
- Q: Insurance
- Q: Cancellation
- Q: Payment
- Q: Other
Can I bring friends or family members?
Yes you can bring whoever you want. They just need to be 18 years old or over.
Do I have to be a student?
You do not need to be a student to attend our trips. Most people on our trips are University students, just remember that if you like meeting new people while exploring UK and Europe, then come and join us as our trips are for you!
How old are the other travellers?
Most people on our trips are between 18 and 35 years old, sometimes older. But age is not important!
We once had a 65 year old lady joining our trip to Edinburgh. And surprisingly (or not?!), she spent her entire time with us, either at the pub, or in a bunk beds room! We offer intergenerational trips, so come and join!
How can I find out more about trips?
Please register on our mailing list so you can receive trips information, next events, opportunities, etc. It’s simple: please click on ‘Join our Newsletter’ or email firstname.lastname@example.org with your full name, nationality, course title and level (if you are a student) and your preferred email address. You will then be added to our list!
What should I wear?
We always suggest people to wear comfortable shoes. We do not recommend you to wear heels, as many English towns will have cobbled streets, and you know how difficult it is to walk on! We also advise to bring an umbrella and/or a jacket with you, clothes that are adaptable to rapidly changing weather, as you may know, the English weather is very changeable! If travelling to the North of the country, bring winter clothes as it can be very cold. If travelling to hot countries, then bring light clothes.
How should I behave during the trip?
Any inappropriate behaviour will not be tolerated during the trip.
Students are expected to conduct themselves politely and respectfully towards each other and other people.
During free time, we always recommend that students remain in a group of 3 or more.
What happens if I’m late for the departure?
Please make sure you arrive 15 minutes before the departure, so we can check everyone’s ticket and leave on time. Times are shown on the website, on Facebook, we also send reminders on Twitter, and by email the day before the departure. Please make a note of this when buying your ticket. If you are late, the coach will leave without you and you will not get a refund. Please remember to come back to the coach on time at the end of the trip, as if arriving late, the coach will also leave without you and you will have to find alternative transport to return to Coventry/ Warwick/ Lemington/ Birmingham/ Wolverhampton/ Walsall. Please make a note that we will not refund the cost of this.
Will there be an organised tour?
Yes. However, you are free to visit the places you find interesting on your own and not follow our guide. A map and a list of attractions will be provided in the coach on the departure day.
Can I not come back with the group after the trip?
Yes. You are free to stay in the destination after the trip finishes. You do not have to come back with the group to the start point. However, we would kindly ask you to let your trip leader know what your plans are, before or on the day of departure (so the group does not wait for you unnecessarily).
What can I do if I left something on the bus/at the accommodation?
Let us know as soon as possible and we will try to get it back for you.
Please email us at email@example.com with the following information:
– Your full name,
– Your email address
– Subject: Lost property
– Message: give us the name of the trip and a full description of what you have lost (e.g. black scarf, brown jacket with a hoodie) and where you think it might be (e.g. on the coach, behind the seat about six rows from the front, under the bedroom in room number 4).
Do I need a visa for Dublin trip?
Yes. An Irish visa might be required if you wish to come with us to Dublin. Applying for a visa is your responsibility and is not included in the price of the tour. However, we can help you with the process. Please see below some information.
As a quick indication, people of the majority of African and Asian countries WILL need an Irish visa, among others.
If you are a citizen of EU/EEA/EFTA countries, you DO NOT need a visa to enter Ireland.
How do I apply for an Irish visa?
1 Apply through the online visa application service*. Click here for more details.
*Specific guidance notes (in 7 languages) available from the Embassy’s website.
2 When you have completed the online application process, follow the instructions on the summary application form that is created by the online system.
3 Print, sign and date the 2 page summary sheet.
4 Collect all supporting documents.
5 Pay the visa fee. The processing fees for the Visa Office (London) are as follows:
– Single entry visa: £53
– Multi entry visa: £88 (depending on the tour, e.g. one tour including St Paddy’s in Dublin (and Belfast) and Northern Ireland). Even though there is no border control between the Republic of Ireland (Dublin) and Northern Ireland (Belfast) you should have a valid visa that allows you to re-enter Ireland (Republic of).
Moreover, you need to carry the required documents that permit you to enter the UK (for Northern Ireland, as well as for the return to the UK after the trip). This would be your passport with UK visa or any other relevant documentation.
This fee cannot be refunded if your application is refused or withdrawn. Some applicants are exempt from the requirement to pay the visa fee, so please check if the visa fee does not apply to you.
Payment is by postal order, bank draft or cash. Postal orders and bank drafts should be made payable to the Embassy of Ireland. For postal applications, payment must be by postal order or bank draft only.
6 Submit your application to the relevant Visa Office (shown on your summary sheet)*.
*You do not have to go to the Visa Office in London to submit your application. You can simply send your application by post, by including a self addressed Royal Mail Special Delivery envelope as it is a guaranteed next day (secured delivery service).
Processing times can vary between countries and during high volume periods during the year. However, you can generally expect a decision within 8 weeks from the date on which your application is lodged at the Visa Office/Embassy/Consulate.
Can someone else apply for an Irish visa on my behalf?
Yes. If applying in person, you can ask someone to submit your application to the Visa Office on your behalf. You still NEED to sign the summary sheet after completing the online application form yourself.
If you wish for someone to collect your passport once the visa decision has been made, you must provide them with a letter of authorisation giving them permission to do so and they must bring a form of photographic ID when they come to collect. This even applies to family members.
Please note that a Schengen visa or UK D visa is not valid for travel to Ireland.
Do I need a visa for European Tour trip?
If you are not a EEA national and want to travel with us to Europe, you may be required to apply for a Schengen visa before you travel. Applying for a visa is your responsibility and is not included in the price of the tour. However, we can help you with the process. Please see below some information.
What is a Schengen visa?
A Schengen visa allows foreigners to travel to all Schengen countries (currently 28* European countries) on just one visa. You must apply for a Schengen visa of a country of your maximum stay (i.e. most nights spent in that country). In case the duration of the stay is the same in several Schengen countries, the country you are applying to must be the first point of entry to the Schengen area.
* The European countries that you will probably need are: Belgium / Netherlands / Germany / France / Spain / Italy.
How do I apply for a Schengen visa?
1 Download the application form here and fill it in cautiously. It is strongly recommended that you submit your application with all necessary documents.
2 Once it’s determined in which embassy/consulate one will apply in, the applicant will apply in the embassy/consulate of that country that has jurisdiction of over at your place of residence.
– In cases where the applicant will be traveling to one and only one Schengen country, the applicant has to apply at the appropriate embassy/consulate of the certain country.
– Whereas if the applicant is planning to visit two or more Schengen countries, it is highly recommended to be applying for the visa in the embassy/consulate of the country you will be residing in for most of the traveling days, referred to as the main destination.
– In case there is no main destination but just a random visit to several Schengen countries, the applicant has to apply for the visa in the embassy/consulate on the first Schengen country he/she will enter according to the itinerary.
How much a Schengen visa costs?
When applying for a Schengen visa there is a non-refundable mandatory visa fee every applicant must pay. The Schengen visa costs vary depending on the type of visa. The Schengen visa fee can be paid in the designated consulate/embassy via cash, debit or credit card. However, some consulates may not allow you to pay by credit card.
– £44 (short stay Schengen visa, less than 90 days)
– £26 (Nationals from Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, Kosovo, FYROM (Macedonia), Montenegro, Russia, Serbia and Ukraine).
Click here for more details.
Please make sure your supporting documents are dated less than 1 month from the deadline.
How long does it take to get a Schengen visa?
Unfortunately there is no fixed answer to this particular question due to different time-frame policies of the embassies/consulates in different parts of the world. Nevertheless it’s highly recommended to apply for a Schengen visa around six weeks prior to ones departure, in order to make your trip as planned.
Although it takes no more than 72 hours for processing a visa in general, there are times when this process takes quite much longer, for 14 up to 21 days in some countries concerning some citizens.
Periods for an appointment vary between 1 up to 10 days. However, on holiday seasons, these periods can increase.
What are the accommodations we will stay in?
We stay in top-rated hostels in each destination. All rooms are single-sex (all male or all female) and sleep 6 – 18 people, depending on the hostels possibilities.
We automatically allocate you to a room with other travellers (of the same sex) from our group. You can also request to choose to share with your friends, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, immediately after your booking with us.
What should I bring?
DO NOT FORGET YOUR PASSPORT (and visa if required). Please make sure you carry your passport with you and not in your overnight bag underneath the coach. It is a good idea to bring a photocopy of these documents with you (just in case you lose the originals).
DO NOT FORGET YOUR CAMERA – you join our trip to see beautiful places and come back home with lots of memories, so do not miss any great photo opportunities, you might regret it!
BRING A TOWEL – most of our hostels provide towels for rent, but we advise to bring your own as it is cheaper.
PACK COMFORTABLE SHOES AND ADAPTABLE CLOTHES – you will be spending a lot of time outside exploring our beautiful destinations. We recommend waterproof jacket at least, as some places may be cold and/ or rainy. Hopefully some will be warm! If you and your friends have planned any extra activities, bring appropriate clothes. If we do plan extra activities which required appropriate clothes, or if there are any changes or specific rules, we will let you know in our pre-trip email and on Facebook.
Where can I get travel insurance?
Safety is as important as enjoyment when travelling with VisitUK.
We are working in partnership with … to offer our travellers a policy specifically designed to meet our travellers’ requirements. This policy is also suitable for students who need travel insurance as a part of their Schengen visa application.
The policy includes the following benefits:
– cancellation or curtailment charges – personal accident – emergency medical expenses
– overseas legal expenses – personal liability – winter sports activity cover available
– personal money, passport and documents – search & rescue (available on comprehensive policy) – airline failure Insurance
– baggage cover – over 100 sports and activities covered as standard – annual multi trip and single trip insurance available
This is only a summary of the cover provided. The full policy document can be read here.
It is best to take out your travel insurance when booking your trip as cover will start for pre-departure cancellation from the policy issue date. This will provide you cover if you should have to cancel your trip for an insured reason such as illness or serious accident preventing you from travelling.
How do I cancel my booking? Can I get a refund if I change my mind?
If you want to cancel your booking or part of it (e.g. the return by coach, the second day for a weekend trip, etc.), you or the person who made the booking for you(lead name) must email us at email@example.com as soon as possible. We will need the booking trip and the full name of each person who needs to cancel.
In order to cover the cancellation process cost and to compensate us for the risk that we may not be able to resell your seat, we take a cancellation charge from the payment you made, depending on the period of notice, as shown below. Please make a note that the period of notice does not include the day of departure nor the day we receive notification.
PERIOD OF NOTICE CANCELLATION FEE FOR ONE DAY TRIPS:
– 30 days or more : 25% or loss of deposit (whichever is greater)
– 29 – 15 days : 50%
– 14 days or less : 100%
PERIOD OF NOTICE CANCELLATION FEE FOR OVERNIGHT TRIPS:
– 60 days or more : 25% or loss of deposit (whichever is greater)
– 59 – 30 days : 50%
– 29 – 15 days : 75%
– 14 days or less : 100%
If you have taken out an insurance policy, please check with it so you know if you may be able to claim for the cancellation charge.
Can I swap my booking to another trip?
Yes. You can swap your ticket to another trip, depending on the spaces left on the specific trip you want to swap with. However, you have to let us know 30 days before the day of departure (one day trips) or 60 days before the day of departure (all overnight trips), by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org, so we can allocate your seat to someone else. However, there’s a £5/ person charge for any amendments. If less than 30 days before the day of departure, tickets are non-transferable.
Can I transfer my booking to someone else?
Yes. You can transfer your booking to whoever you want, unless this person is 18 years old or over. Please make a note that if you booked an overnight trip with accommodation, we will normally request the person to be the same gender as you (e.g. if you are a female, the person you want to transfer your booking to must be a female too). If not, please contact us as soon as you can and we will let you know if there are still a bed available in another room of a different sex. To transfer your booking to someone else, email us at email@example.com and send us the following information:
– Your full name
– Your email
– Subject: Transfer booking
– Message: Tell us your booking trip, the departure date, the pick-up point of the trip, the full name, address and mobile number of the person you would like to transfer to.
There is a £5/person amendment fee.
We cannot normally make a change later than 7 days (one day trips) or 30 days (all overnight trips) prior to the day of departure.
Do I need a Paypal account to make a payment?
No. You do not need a Paypal account to make a payment. You can simply enter your details and bank card to make a full payment if you do not want to create your own Paypal account.
Can I pay by bank transfer or by cash into your bank account?
No. All payments need to be made through a Paypal secure payment, or in cash when buying your ticket with one of our staff.
I paid a deposit. Can I get a refund?
No.In order to cover the cancellation process cost and to compensate us for the risk that we may not be able to resell your seat, deposits are non-refundable.
How do I pay and confirm bookings made by the VisitUK team?
If we met and reserved trip places for you, we will send you an email in the evening or next morning, so you can pay to confirm your bookings.
Any travel tips?
EXCHANGE MONEY – if you are joining one of our trips abroad, make sure you exchange your money into the local currency (Euros for France, Spain etc.). You can buy some cash in the local currency at any UK post office, bank, travel agents, etc. Ask around for the best rate!
CHECK YOUR MOBILE PHONE – using your mobile phone abroad can be very expensive, so do not forget to check your calls, texts and data costs outside your allowance with your supplier when travelling abroad. To make sure you will not receive a super expensive bill when coming back home, we recommend to switch off the data roaming (i.e. web browsing, emails, and other data services) in your settings. It is best to use wifi at our hostels or other locations, wifi is almost available for free everywhere!
GET A PLUG ADAPTER/POWER CONVERTER – countries in Europe use a different system from the UK one. Bring one or two so you can charge your phone, camera, etc.
PACK YOUR LUGGAGE – We recommend not to pack too much as you will have to carry your luggage (e.g. from the bus to the hostel, which is sometimes a 10 minutes walking distance). For a one day trip, we advise you to bring a small day bag/ backpack to keep with you on the bus. For all overnight trips, you can bring a medium bag or suitcase of 15kg max to put underneath the bus, and a small day bag/backpack to keep with you on the bus.