Nursing placement travel and accommodation

Guidance on travel and accommodation for undergraduate nursing students when on placement.

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Expenses SAAS will pay and how to claim

Your Nursing Bursary includes £5 for travel each day of your course. You can therefore only claim for placement travel which costs more than £5 per day using the cheapest ticket possible. This is true even if it costs you nothing to get to University. You need to now deduct the first £5 per day from any claim. If you are thinking of using the train, it may be possible to claim that depending on shift times etc. Contact the School for clarification.

If you wish to use private transport you may do so but you can only claim the cost of travel by public transport. If you claim more than the cheapest fare available, SAAS will restrict your claim to the cheapest fare.

If you decide to use a car, you'll need to make sure you have business use on your car insurance. If you have an accident without proper insurance your insurer may not pay out.

You need to take advantage of season tickets, zone cards and student railcards wherever possible. If you buy a railcard or coach card in order to get the cheapest fare, SAAS will repay the cost of the card as well as the fare. You need to tell SAAS what you would normally spend when in full-time attendance at your university. SAAS will deduct £5 per day to cover the amount of your normal daily travel costs. They expect you to meet the first £5 of daily travel expenses from your Bursary.

  • Weekly and monthly passes (for example UniRider) need to be purchased if it works out cheaper than daily tickets.
  • Journey time should not be a factor when claiming mileage as this is down to convenience rather than necessity.
  • If public transport gets the student to their placement in time for their shift they should not claim for mileage.
  • If mileage is being claimed, shift times need to also be supplied to show public transport was not available for the student to use.

Mileage should only be claimed when there is no public transport available at all (not just because of a long journey time), the student is doing patient visits that day or the student has a physical disability which would prohibit them from using public transport. Mentors are encouraged to think of ways to support a student appropriately for their stage in the programme. Students may be able to walk or use public transport. They may also use other methods to manage the case even while being with their mentor.

SAAS claims need to be submitted to the School Office within 3 months of incurring the expense to ensure appropriate time for the form to be processed to guarantee the claim is reimbursed and does not fall outwith the 6 month SAAS timescale.

Incomplete forms

  • Please ensure all fields in the form are fully complete.
  • A lot of forms have return journey instead of specific details. The method of journey and to and from details should always be included.
  • Dates for the claim should be detailed.
  • Students need to either enter normal daily travel expenses or write a reason why they have none. Leaving the box empty or scoring through it is not acceptable.

If we receive claims which do not follow these guidelines, the form will be returned to the student explaining why.

All travel claims - that you may only claim for the cheapest form of transport between your home and the placement area.

If it is essential that you use your car then you should provide a note on the SAAS claim form detailing why private transport was used. You are most likely however to only get the public transport cost refunded. If you are using your own car then please ensure you have the correct insurance cover as the University cannot accept liability.

In the form guidelines it states that private transport may be used if more convenient for the student, however this does not entitle the student to claim mileage. If public transport is available to get the student to their placement in time for their shift, then the cheapest ticket option should be claimed for rather than mileage.

SAAS forms

SAAS forms are available from the SAAS website, and forms specifically are on the Nursing Forms section of the SAAS website.

Can I stay in accommodation, rather than travel?

If you require accommodation to attend your placement then SAAS limit the cost to £25 per person per night. Students considering this should contact the School Office in the first instance. The School has an accommodation directory which students should consult regarding more distant placements, as well as guidance information and wording that your accommodation can use to help you claim from SAAS. 

Travel costs when accommodation is also being paid - SAAS have confirmed that travel costs for one return journey only will be paid to students who are claiming for accommodation when undertaking placements away from home. This is to cover the cost of getting to the placement at the beginning and returning when the placement is complete. If students choose to travel home during their placement then you have to do so at their own expense.

If you have any questions about placement travel or accommodation, call 01382 388534 and ask to speak to the staff member dealing with student travel and accommodation claims, or email