Coronavirus-information for residents


During the evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) situation this page will provide you with the latest updates and answers to frequently asked questions relating to accommodation. We are monitoring the latest advice and guidance issued by the UK Government, Public Health England (PHE) and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and will continue to take all appropriate and necessary steps to ensure that our residences remain a safe place. 

Have you got a question?

Self-isolation in University accommodation

If you need to self-isolate, please see our 'information for students who are self-isolating' webpage for frequently asked questions and information.


Due to the ongoing situation in relation to Covid-19, we have updated our policy regarding visitors to manage the risk of infection. Students who live in Exeter are not allowed to meet indoors with anyone who is not part of their household. This means you will not be allowed to have any external visitors to your rooms or university accommodation.

However, it is also acknowledged that visitors, including family members, provide a benefit to health and welfare. If this is the case students should contact the Residence Management Team via

Residents wishing to have a guest should provide the following information:

  • Student name and student ID number
  • Residence - building, block, flat number and room number
  • Date of visit
  • Confirmation that the guest is over 18

Overnight visitors outside of their households is not allowed in University accommodation. There will be some married students and others in long-term relationships whose partner lives sufficiently far away to merit an overnight stay, if this is the case students should contact the Residence Management Team via However, it should be noted that there might be times when it is not possible to accommodate these visitors due to local restrictions.

Eating in catered residences

Once you have been allocated to a room we will assign you to a particular zone in the dining room. You will remain in this dining zone for all your meals throughout the whole duration of your catered contract, to ensure your safety and help us with tracing should a need to do so arise.

We will also implement the following safety steps: 

  • Your table will be 2 metres apart from the next with sufficient space to move around safely
  • Dining rooms will be ventilated to allow free flow of air
  • Cleaning regularity will be increased and every touchpoint will be sanitised regularly
  • All dining rooms and catering areas will feature clear signage and floor markings
  • Sanitisation stations will be installed at regular steps through the dining areas

 You will still be able to socialise with other students safely and have the flexibility of enjoying your meal at different times each day.

We have completely revised the dining journey to protect our students and will provide an excellent dining experience with a choice of quality meals. We have a developed a new booking system that will allow you to choose when you want to enjoy your breakfast, weekend brunch or dinner. Through the booking system you will choose time slots and the system will automatically know which safe dining zone you are in and will place you there, at your desired time slot. The live system will allow you to change or cancel your booking if your plans change. Once you arrive at the dining room a dedicated host will take you through the process step-by-step, to ensure you are looked after and dine comfortably.

Here are the extra measures we have taken:

  • We have rearranged dining spaces and furniture to adhere to the current social distancing regulations
  • Each safe dining zone will be thoroughly sanitised after each diner
  • We have installed several hand-sanitiser stations at convenient points throughout the dining journey, as well as clear and simple signage to help you through the one-way dining rooms
  • We have limited the amount of touch points in the dining halls and will have adequately ventilated spaces
  • We have given our teams refresher training in safe cleaning practices and they will be available to speak to for further reassurance and guidance


You will have the option of our takeaway service. You can use the booking system mentioned in question 2 to tell us you are coming. When you arrive you will be looked after in a dedicated takeaway waiting area and collect your meal and drink from the host when ready. You can then return to your room and enjoy your meal there.

There will still be spaces to socialise that will have been sanitised thoroughly before you arrive. They have been configured to adhere to social distancing guidelines to ensure everyone is safe while they socialise. It may look a little different but you will still be able to mix with your friends. 


Accommodation contract

Even though the accommodation contract start date is 13 September, due to Government guidelines and recommendations to manage the risks in relation to Covid-19, we will be implementing staggered arrivals. We will notify you by email of your allocated arrival date which will be a date between 10 September and 20 September. We will then offer you a refund if your allocated arrival date is after 13 September 2020. Similarly, we will not charge for the period between 10 and 13 September if your allocated arrival is before 13 September.

The exact refund amount will be calculated according to your allocated arrival date, not your actual arrival date.

We will be processing refund for changes to arrivals in term 1 and it will appear on your student statement before payment date for term 2. If you have paid for the whole year, you will be able to review your account in January and discuss any overpayment with our Finance team by logging an enquiry via SID Online if your contract was issued by the University.

Remote Study in Term 1

We have worked incredibly hard to create a flexible learning experience which can respond to changing UK government requirements during this pandemic, which includes as much face to face teaching and other on-campus activities as possible. While the number of cases in the UK has risen recently, giving rise to stricter rules, as and when cases reduce and restrictions are eased we hope activities on campus will increase.

However, if you have made a formal request via your College and it has been confirmed that your programme is eligible for remote study and you have accepted an offer for University accommodation and received your Contract Formation Email, but do not live in our accommodation until January 2021; we will continue to hold the room for you with no charge for the first payment period, i.e. 12/13 September 2020 to 3 January 2021 (or your arrival date if you decide to come before 3 January). If you then remain enrolled on your course for the remainder of the academic year we will charge you for the accommodation from 3 January 2021 (or your arrival date if you decide to come before 3 January) until the end of the contract.

Please ensure that you have made your formal request to study online by following the guidance for current students on the main University website.

You should then let the Accommodation Office know that you plan to study remotely by completing the online form which is available here. We will write to confirm the amendments to your contract arrangements once we have received notification from your College that your request has been approved. 

If you have a Contract Formation email as above, we will hold the room that you contracted for in Term 1. However, this would not apply to you if you are a new January starter (e.g. PGT January starts). You will need to apply for accommodation at least one month before you intend to arrive and you will be allocated accommodation as available at the time of your application.

If you have been confirmed to be on Remote Study for Term 1 and you have a room held for you, you will be able to book an arrival time with us for your arrival for Term 2. Please check our website from October for further details of how to do this.

Please refer to our question is the section under Accommodation Contract section above about arriving after 13 September.

Yes, if you did not have an accommodation contract confirmed in Term 1, you may apply for accommodation from Term 2 only and we will allocate accommodation to you, if there is accommodation available.

Applications for University accommodation at Exeter can be made via our accommodation login page.

If you intended to arrive to campus but then later decide to request remote study and if this is approved, then the processes as described in the above FAQ for "What if I enrol for a course but decide to study remotely for Term 1?" will apply from the date that you vacate the accommodation by removing your belongings and returning your key/fob. You should let the Accommodation Office know that you plan to study remotely by completing the online form which is available here. We will write to confirm the amendments to your contract arrangements once we have received notification from your College that your request has been approved. 

If you secure accommodation in the private sector in either Exeter, each accommodation agreement will vary and you should clarify with the provider of the accommodation what will happen BEFORE you agree to the accommodation contract. The University will not be able to assist you with any negotiations with private accommodation providers.