Safe travel


We have gathered some useful information to help you stay safe while travelling as a student.

Don't forget that many UHI students may buy discounted bus tickets, and if you are under 22 you are eligible for free nationwide bus travel in Scotland; visit Freebus to find out more.

Collage of 3 | Kylesku bridge | Isle of Mull ferry from Oban | Two students walking outside

Winter driving content

Winter driving

Winter driving

Driving in winter brings additional challenges.  In icy conditions the safe distance between you and the car in front may be ten times that of good weather.

To prepare for winter:

  • Check and prepare your vehicle for winter
  • Change your driving style during ice and snow
  • Be prepared in case you are stuck in snow by having emergency supplies in your vehicle
  • Take care when there is surface water on the road
  • Avoid driving in fog, and if you cannot avoid fog, adapt your driving style

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) has prepared a detailed fact sheet on winter driving. Police Scotland also provide Winter Road Safety advice.

If you would like help to drive less, car sharing may be an option.

Safe walking content

Safe walking

Safe walking

Many students get to and from college as pedestrians.  Walking has many health benefits, and can be very safe if you adopt some simple precautions.

Be aware that it is often difficult for other road users to see pedestrians, even on roads with street lighting. Difficultly in seeing pedestrians is not limited to the hours of darkness, but also during low lighting conditions.  It is advised that pedestrians wear light clothing and add reflective materials to clothing and bags.  The Highway Code states that pedestrians as well as cyclists should wear or carry materials to improve their visibility to drivers when lighting conditions are poor.  You should also carry a torch if walking in an area without street lighting.

The Highway Code should also be consulted before taking up travel as a pedestrian. Sections 1 to 35 have been written specifically for pedestrians. 

If you are walking alone at night, this blog reviews the 10 Best Safety Apps you can download. These type of apps can send instant alerts to your emergency contacts and will include GPS information on your location. Some, such as WalkSafe, also offer a feature which allows you to check-in with your friends if you are feeling unsafe.

Charity walks

The ROSPA also has advice for those arranging charity walks which is available to download as a fact sheet.

Safer cycling content

Safer cycling

Safer cycling

Cycling is fun, keeps you fit and is environmentally friendly. However, many cyclists are killed or seriously injured every year in the UK.

By taking some precautions you can greatly increase your safety:

  • Look after your bike. Regularly check your brakes, oil moving parts, tighten nuts and make sure your lights are working. ROSPA have produced a downloadable checklist
  • Wear a cycle helmet that meets a recognised safety standard
  • Wear bright and reflective clothing to help other road users see you
  • Always use bright lights and reflectors in dark, dull weather or poor visibility
  • Participate in a training course, see Cycling Scotland, if it has been some time since you have cycled
  • Plan your route, making use of off – road cycling routes, less busy roads and avoiding busy junctions etc.
  • Take extra care at junctions and around large vehicles. Large vehicles often have areas around the vehicle where you will not be visible to the driver

See ROSPA for more information on safe cycling, or visit Cycling Scotland who have safety videos to watch.

Bicycle security is also important. Check out this guidance from Secure By Design, who work with Police forces to help you protect your bike and prevent theft.

Train and ferry travel content

Train and ferry travel

Train and ferry travel

Travel by train

Many of our campuses are connected to the rail network, or are located close to busy rail lines. If you travel by train or have a railway line nearby, there are resources written to help you stay safe.

The British Transport Police (BTP) have advice to keep you and others safe. You can find out about service disruptions at National Rail.

Travel by ferry

Many of our campuses are accessible by ferry.