We’re sick of it. I know. You probably really don’t want to hear about any more rules and regs –there’s hope though, as we’re coming into summer after nearly a year and a half of pretty strict stuff, finally there’s a lot more flexibility and freedom.
But there are still some important bits to bear in mind. Whether we like it or not, there are some regulations in place that we’ve got to listen to – and as much as we might like to think it, Covid hasn’t gone just yet. So, with that in mind, I thought it best to round up some of the rules to make it a little more accessible. It might be particularly useful to bear these in mind as we come to the end of the uni term, with lots of us wanting to have send-off parties, and others going back home over the border or across seas – where, rather unhelpfully you might have to comprehend two sets of rules, for both Wales and your home country.
Let’s start with the homeland.
The Welsh Gov have got a current restrictions page here – so I’ll summarise.
- Wear a face covering inside.
- Extended household with only 2 other households which should stay the same.
- Not meet with anyone inside other than with the extended households.
- Not meet with more than 5 other people in indoor regulated settings e.g. pubs, cafes, restaurants – UNLESS you are meeting with people you live with.
- Not meet more than 29 other people outdoors including private gardens, public spaces, outdoor regulated premises e.g. pubs, cafes, restaurants.
- Follow social distancing rules when meeting people who are not in your household or extended households.
- Work from home where possible.
- Minimise travel to covid-high areas (the ones on the list below in England, and here might be good ideas to avoid for now – bear in mind these might change with time so keep checking the numbers).
Now to those moving across the bridge… let’s take a summary of the rules that apply to you.
England is currently in Step 3 of their Road Map, with a view to move to Step 4 on July 19th – so do bear in mind that these rules could change at that point – and according to what we’re seeing/hearing in the press – they are likely to.
If you’re returning to an area where the Delta variant is high, the gov recommend that
- you get BOTH doses of the vaccine when available;
- do the surge testing in your local area;
- self-isolate if you have any symptoms or test positive;
- get tested twice a week for free and isolate if positive;
- work from home if possible.
For specific guidance on the areas where this variant is high – check this page and scroll to that heading.
The councils currently listed on there are:
- Blackburn and Darwen
- Cheshire East
- Cheshire West and Chester
- Greater Manchester Combined Authority
- Liverpool City Region Combined Authority
- North Tyneside
When in England, you MUST…
- Wear a face covering inside.
- Minimise the number of people you meet.
- Not exceed 30 people in gatherings outside. It is your choice whether you choose to keep your distance from seeing family and friends in this situation.
- Not exceed 6 people in indoor gatherings. You can meet with any number of households indoors up to 6 people, and in a group of any size if from up to 2 households, each household can include an existing support bubble.
- Still follow the COVID rules, even if you’ve been vaccinated.
Returning home from University
The current government guidance states that students should take a test twice a week and before you travel away from University for the summer recess.
What might get a little confusing is if you’re suddenly having to self-isolate…when
your tenancy is up in a couple of days and the isolation would overlap – so…at the moment, our advice to students is:
· If you are struggling with your symptoms, you can find some more information about managing these here and by calling 111
· In terms of your landlord’s position, unfortunately you’re not entitled to stay in the house past the contract end date (legally speaking). As your contract will have ended they are within their rights to ask you to leave, or to charge you a daily rate for staying in the property
· A daily rate might have significant financial pressures on you. In this case, try contacting Student Funding and Advice at firstname.lastname@example.org to get some info about the Financial Assistance Programme (FAPA) and the COVID-19 Student Support Fund.
· It you can’t stay and/or you can’t pay, you need to think about what this means for you and where you are moving to. If you are moving back to your family home, or to another household, they may have to self-isolate as a result of your positive test. Basically, I don’t know, and if I was giving the best advice it would be to check with Public Health Wales/the NHS COVID Hotline on what to do next.
· Remember not to use public transport in your isolation period though yeah? And keep washing your hands. You dutty pig.
You can also access these Welsh and English Covid-19 rules by logging into the Student Intranet.
If I were writing about returning to Cardiff in the Autumn (which we will be, so stay tuned), there would be a lot more to say here. But as everyone is leaving Cardiff, my best advice is to check in with the returning rules for your respective home countries, these may have requirements such as:
- Proof of negative testing on arrival
- Track and trace documents on arrival
- Vaccine proof
I hope this helps to round up some of the rules for you, but do keep checking the pages linked throughout because we all know how fast these rules can change.
If you need some extra support and guidance about moving out, don’t forget to check out our Student Advice Team’s leaving accommodation page and blog, and the Advice page on Covid-19 health and wellbeing. As always, get in touch with the Team using the details below if there’s anything that needs a little more clarifying.
This blog has been written by Charlie Mallinson from the Student Advice Team in the Students’ Union. If you would like further help and support with the issues raised in this blog, or any aspect of your student experience, please get in touch using the following links:
Contact Student Advice
+44 (0)2920 781410