Covid-19 Guidelines


Updated April 4th, 2022

Almost everything is now back to normal and open again in the UK. However, your safety remains our priority, so please check the current UK government guidelines as the situation may change from day to day.

Below are answers to questions regarding the current covid situation for travelling to and studying in the UK:

Who can travel to the UK?

• There are currently no countries on the UK's red list so you can travel to the UK from or via almost any country.
• The government reviews the red list every few weeks, so please check the list before you travel in case the situation has changed.

Do you need to quarantine in the UK and what do you need to do before travelling?

• You no longer need to take a COVID-19 test either before or after you arrive in the UK and you do not need to complete a passenger locator form.
• However, please do check what is required for entry to the UK before you travel, as the situation may change. Also check in your country before departure as this varies from country to country and the situation may change at any time.

Can students have the vaccine or booster in Bristol?

• Yes, you can 😊 They are free and you can have them in one of Bristol's 'walk-in' centres. You do not need to make an appointment.
• You can have your first dose, your second dose and also your booster in the UK. You have to wait for 8 weeks after your first dose before having your second dose.
• You do not need an NHS (National Health Service) number to get the vaccine, but it helps as it will then be easier for you to get an official record of your vaccine.
• NHS numbers are given to you if you are staying in Bristol for 12 weeks + and you are registered with a local doctor. If you would like to register with a local doctor, we recommend the Pembroke Road Surgery as it is only 5 minutes’ walk from the school.
• If you can, we recommend you to have the vaccines before leaving your country.

Do you have to wear a mask or socially distance in the UK?

• It is no longer obligatory to wear a mask in shops, cinemas, theatres, on public transport, in pubs, restaurants cafes and bars In England. However, many people are still choosing to wear a mask, so please do what you think is best for you and please keep safe. If you are travelling to Wales, Scotland or Ireland, different guidelines may apply, so check the latest rules before travelling.
• Although you do not have to wear a mask in most places, we do recommend you ‘socially distance’ whenever possible and also wear a mask when indoors and close to other people if you can.
• There are still some other places that still ask you to wear a mask, such as hospitals and doctors' surgeries and some shops, so you should bring a supply of masks with you.
• We also ask you to wear a mask whenever possible in communal areas of the school and when facing or near another person inside the school.
• If you have a cold or cough, we ask you to wear a mask in class even if you have tested negative for COVID.
• Lessons are face-to-face in school but with safety precautions in place.

What can you expect in homestays?

• We have provided guidance to our homestay hosts on how best to keep themselves and their students safe at home.
• We are only providing single room accommodation, except for family members or friends travelling together.
• We have measures in place in case you need to self-isolate in your homestay, in line with current government guidance.
• We will ensure backup/emergency accommodation is available should it be needed.

What can you expect in the school residences?

• Students staying in self-catering accommodation are provided with clear guidance to ensure their safety and we have carried out measures to ensure the residences are COVID-19 safe.
• Common areas in the self-catering residences will be sanitised regularly. Students will be expected to keep the houses clean and work surfaces clear.
• We have measures in place in case you need to self-isolate in line with current government guidance. Students required to isolate are kept apart from the other (non-quarantining) students.
• Our Residence Managers live in the residence and will help you when needed.
• People from other households are strictly not permitted to visit the residence during this period.

Watch this video to see how Laetitia, our amazing proficiency student, kept herself busy in March 2021 during her 10 days of quarantine in St John's House, ELC Bristol's school residence.

What if you get COVID or symptoms of Covid-19 while you are in Bristol?

• If you test positive for covid, there is no longer a legal requirement for you to self-isolate.
• However, we would like you to stay at home until you feel well again and have a negative test result.
• You should not mix with or go close to people you live with until you have had a Lateral Flow or PCR test and a negative test result.
• Telephone the school. We will then help to arrange for you to be tested. While you wait for the test results, you should self-isolate.
• When you return to school, you are advised to wear a mask and socially distance for several days after you come out of isolation to be sure you are no longer contagious to other people.
• During your period of self-isolation, you can attend your lessons on-line.

What happens if a close contact gets COVID?

• If you have been in close contact with or live in the same household as someone with COVID-19, there is no longer a legal requirement for you to self-isolate.
• However, we would like you to stay at home and self-isolate until you take a test and the result is negative.
• If you are staying in a school residence you may be asked to change your room. You can order food online and we will make sure it is delivered to your room.
• If you are with a homestay family and self-isolating, they will look after you. If this is not possible, then we will provide suitable alternative accommodation. Homestay families will provide food for your lunch (+ £5.00 per day).
• While you are at home, you can join your normal class online every day.

Do ELC’s normal terms and conditions apply?

• Yes, generally the school’s normal conditions apply as set out on the school website, however, due to COVID we are making some special allowances – see below.

What if you want to cancel your course before you arrive?

• Until further notice, you can cancel your course with no costs up to 7 days before your course start date.
• If you cancel less than 7 days before your course start date, we will give you a credit voucher for your course. If you have booked our accommodation, we will charge you one week’s accommodation cancellation fee.
• If you have booked via a representative, the representative's terms and conditions will apply.

What if the school cancels your course before you arrive?

If, before you arrive, the school cancels your booking because we are unable to open, you can either
• attend the course on-line
• receive a credit voucher valid for one year, or
• receive a full refund (minus bank charges)
Credit vouchers can be used by you or by another member of your family.

What if, during your course, the UK government forces the school to close?

• In the unlikely event of a Government shutdown, all courses will be moved online. If you are in Bristol, you will be very welcome to stay in your accommodation and remain in the UK or return home and continue studying from there. If you do not wish to transfer to an online course, you will be offered a credit voucher for your tuition fees valid for one year from the last day of studying with us. Fees paid for your unused accommodation weeks will be refunded in full.

Do you need insurance?

• Please remember that, as per our terms and conditions, our tuition fees are generally non-refundable, so we strongly recommend that you take out Student Travel Insurance before you come to the UK.
• The school does not arrange insurance, so we suggest you arrange insurance yourself before travelling
• Insurance should cover the loss of your fees and flights in case of cancellation or curtailment (shortening your course), medical expenses, personal injury, personal liability, overseas legal expenses and the loss of personal belongings and money.

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