Travel to high-risk areas
If you want to go on a business trip to an area that poses safety risks, you will need the prior authorisation of the University. As your employer, we are responsible for your health and safety. We have therefore drawn up ‘Guidelines for business travel to high-risk areas’, which are based on the foreign travel advice from the Dutch government.
Important: Depending on the colour code of the country where you intend to make your business trip, you will need prior written permission for the trip from the Faculty Board/Expertise Centre Director and/or the Executive Board. Make sure you submit your request no later than 8 weeks before the planned trip.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (BZ) provides advice for every country in every region of the world. Its advice is colour-coded according to the safety of the region. You can look up its advice for the place you wish to visit online or in the 24/7 BZ Reis app.
Employees going on business trips can make use of the University’s collective travel insurance scheme (via ACE). You do not need to register your trip before departure with the insurance, but the insurance company requires you to download the insurance card and install the Chubb Travel Smart app before you leave.
Travel to a red zone
Red means do not travel. In very exceptional cases, the Executive Board may authorise a trip to a red zone, for instance if the trip is absolutely essential to your research or work and cannot be postponed. If you are planning a business trip to a region classed as red, you must approach your Faculty Board to request permission from the Executive Board.
Make sure you submit your request no later than 8 weeks before the planned start date of your trip.
One compulsory condition of obtaining permission is that you take a three-day ‘hostile environment awareness training’ (HEAT) training course before you start your trip. You must have gained your HEAT certificate no more than 5 years before the trip start date. You can register for the course by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, stating your name and the SAP number that will pay for the training. The Safety Department will register you.
Travel to an orange zone
Orange means only travel if this is essential, which means that you cannot do your work without going on this trip and that you cannot postpone the trip to a later date. You will need prior permission from the International Incidents Team (IIT) on behalf of the Executive Board. The decision about whether to approve your trip is based on a risk assessment. You may have to satisfy certain conditions, such as drawing up a safety plan.
One compulsory condition of obtaining permission is that you take a three-day ‘hostile environment awareness training’ (HEAT) training course or basic safety and security training before you start your trip. (The training is not required if the Ministry of Foreign Affairs travel advice states that the region’s orange classification is because of Covid-19, and without Covid-19 it would have been classified as yellow.) You must have gained your certificate from this training no more than 7 years before the trip start date. You can register for the course by sending an e-mail to email@example.com, stating your name and the SAP number that will pay for the training. The Safety Department will register you.
Travel to a yellow or green zone
Yellow means that the safety risks are greater than you are used to in the Netherlands. Green means that the safety risks are comparable with the risks in the Netherlands. You may travel to yellow and green areas if you have received authorisation from your mandate holder or the Faculty Board or the Director.
The travel advice changes before the start of the trip
If the region’s classification changes to orange or red, you should contact the Faculty Board as soon as possible. Permission for the trip may be withdrawn, or you may have to satisfy additional conditions.
What to do if the situation suddenly changes during your trip
If you are visiting an area and its colour code changes to red, you should get in touch with your contact at the university as soon as possible, and/or contact the Safety Department (in an emergency, call +31 71 527 6666). If you are visiting an area and its colour code changes to orange, contact the emergency number of our travel insurer ACE Assistance as soon as possible: +31 010 289 3536 (24/7). The University’s policy number is NLBBBA04490.
In such an event, follow the instructions issued by or on behalf of the University immediately, as well as any instructions issued by or on behalf of the Dutch government. If you are not a Dutch national, follow the instructions of the government of your country of origin.
Registration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
It is a good idea to register with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs so that the ambassador or consulate will be able to contact you in the event of an emergency. Register at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Situations can rapidly change, for instance in the event of a natural disaster or terrorist attack. To ensure that you are aware of the latest developments, you can subscribe by e-mail to the travel advice for the area you are visiting, regularly check the 24/7 BZ Reis app or follow the BZ Reisadvies Twitter account.