on this page
A Safe Travel Plan is an agreement between a student, their parents and their school or hostel. It gives everyone clear instructions on what to do if something unexpected happens during the trip.
Safe Travel Plans ensure students can travel safely between their boarding school or hostel and their home.
Students who need a Safe Travel Plan
Each student under 18 must have a Safe Travel Plan for trips booked through ABSTUDY. This includes students who are independent for ABSTUDY purposes.
This is extra important for students from remote communities with long and complex journeys. If anything happens and they get stuck, they need to know what to do, who to contact and who to speak to.
When you book travel for a student directly instead of through ABSTUDY, you don’t need a formal Safe Travel Plan. You still need to ensure the student is travelling safely.
When you organise student travel, you’re responsible for making the student’s Safe Travel Plan. You also need to involve their family in this. As the travel organiser, you need to:
- review and update the student’s Safe Travel Plan for each trip
- consult with the student’s family about each plan for each trip
- check the plan the day before travel in case there’s a last minute change like a flight delay.
Contents of a Safe Travel Plan
A Safe Travel plan should contain all the information the student needs during their trip. This includes what to do if something happens to disrupt it, like a cancelled flight.
Complete the plan as much as you can before requesting an ABSTUDY travel booking. You can add specific travel details when you get the itinerary from us.
If the student is with a supervisor the whole trip, the plan can have basic information and the supervisor’s contact details.
If they‘re travelling alone for some or all of the trip, they need a complete plan with more details.
A complete Safe Travel Plan contains contact details for the student and their:
- school or hostel, including after hours
- parent or guardian
- local emergency services
- someone who can help the student if something unexpected happens while they’re travelling alone
- doctor, if needed.
The plan also contains:
- photo ID with the student’s information, such as a student ID card
- the itinerary - where they’re going, what flights, buses or ferries they’re taking, route numbers, ticket details, departure and arrival times
- any allergies, medical conditions, medicines and treatment plans
- instructions for what to do in certain scenarios where they might get stuck.
A useful Safe Travel Plan template is on the Department of Social Services website. You’ll also find examples of plans for different kinds of trips.
Using the Safe Travel Plan
Keep a copy of the plan. You don’t need to send a copy to ABSTUDY.
Attach the student’s safe travel plan to their itinerary. They need to carry it when travelling.
If there are travel disruptions or cancellations, the safe travel plan gets activated.