The FCO have now issued unprecedented advice to travellers currently overseas:

“If you live in the UK and are currently travelling abroad, you are strongly advised to return now, where and while there are still commercial routes available.”

Whilst Curtailment in such circumstances is not covered under the travel wording, UMAL is now extending its discretionary offer to cover the additional costs of returning to the UK as a result of the FCO advice. As before, this only extends to additional expenses and would therefore be predicated on the traveller already having a pre-booked ticket to return. If that ticket cannot be amended for an early return, we would then be able to consider the cost of a new ticket. If they do not already have a ticket however we would not be able to assist as they would have needed to book a ticket at some point anyway and this is not therefore an additional item of expenditure.

If travellers elect to remain in place when the FCO has advised them to leave and UMAL has agreed to cover curtailment as set out above, the travel cover will cease unless specifically agreed otherwise with UMAL.

For those travellers who are unable to return home due to the lack of any available flights, we would urge them to contact Global Response to see if any other means of return can be arranged. The UMAL travel cover will continue to operate and will also cover reasonable additional costs of sustenance, travel and accommodation necessarily incurred until the end of the original planned duration of the journey.

If travellers are still unable to return home by the end of the original planned duration of their journey, the UMAL travel cover will continue to operate but travellers must contact Global Response before the end of the original period of the journey in order to assess whether there are any other options available to return.

Please remember…

  • For any cancelled travel arrangements please ensure that any available refunds are claimed back before submitting your claim to UMAL for any shortfalls.

  • In order to ensure that Global Response are able to respond to any urgent queries during this period, please only contact them if you are in urgent need of assistance.

  • We are dealing with an unprecedented number of claims under the travel cover so please bear with us. We will deal with claims in order of receipt except for urgent matters which will of course receive priority.
  • Travel cover for UK trips only applies where the journey involves an overnight stay and/or travel by air.

  • Due to the current restriction of movement in London, we are no longer receiving a Royal Mail service to our office. It is unlikely that regular post will be received by UMAL until the office is again attended and Royal Mail service returns to normal.

  • With this in mind it is strongly recommended that you advise staff and students not to send hard
    copy post to UMAL until further notice because we cannot guarantee it will be received. In the interim, please forward your enquiries via email (available at, or call UMAL 0207 847 8670.