How Satisfied Are University Students With Their Freshers’ Experience This Year Given COVID-19?

As providers of student insurance, we at The Insurance Emporium recently surveyed* 1000 undergraduate students asking them about the impact Covid-19 had had on their student life so far during this academic year. Sadly, just 3.4% said they felt ‘very satisfied’ with their freshers’ experience.  Over half (53%) felt dissatisfied, and nearly a quarter (24%) wished they’d stayed at home instead.   

Did students feel they’d been misled when signing up for student accommodation?

Over a third of students (34%) in our survey felt they’d been misled when they signed up for student accommodation only to discover that most of the lectures were online and that mixing with a wide range of other students was not possible because of social distancing rules. 

Sadly, over half (54%) were dissatisfied with their social life so far, with 51% saying they’d found it difficult to make friends at university this year due to social distancing.

How many had caught COVID? Were they afraid of catching it? And how many had broken COVID-19 rules?

26% of students said they’d caught Covid-19 this academic year or knew a student who’d had to self-isolate because they’d caught it.  A significant 44% of students said they were afraid of catching the illness because they’d seen how ill people can get.

When it came to knowingly breaking Covid-19 rules, almost a fifth (19%) admitted they had done so since the start of term.  Three quarters (75%) of these breaches involved knowingly being way too close to other students, meeting up in bars (36%) and house parties (35%).

Did students find people hostile or negative towards them due to their being students during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Yes, over a fifth of students (24%) on average had experienced negativity or hostility towards them because they were a student during the Covid-19 pandemic.  This included people on the streets giving them ‘looks’ (over 50% had experienced this); negative comments against them posted online (38% had experienced this); negative comments made against them in person (32% had encountered this); and friends avoiding them (9% had experienced this).

Did students feel they’d still be home in time for Christmas?

Happily, it seems that the students in our survey were still an upbeat lot, with 70% expecting to make it back home in time for Christmas.  We wish them all the best for very happy holidays ahead.

The Insurance Emporium’s Chief Executive Officer Francis D Martin said:

“These survey results reflect how the class of 2020 have experienced an academic year unlike any other so far.  It’s been a difficult time for many people on many levels, including students.  We admire their tenacity, positivity and resilience and we would particularly like to wish all UK students the very best of luck in their academic studies for the rest of this academic year. 

We truly hope that things get back to as normal as soon as possible for students over the coming months and that they can enjoy the rest of their year at university as much as they can. As providers of student insurance, we are always here if any student wishes to discuss any aspect of insurance cover which we provide. More details of our student insurance can be found on our website here:

* The independent survey was commissioned by The Insurance Emporium and conducted on their behalf by Censuswide, with 1000 undergraduate university students aged 17-23 in the UK. It was carried out between 13.10.2020 – 23.10.2020. Censuswide abide by and employ members of the Market Research Society which is based on the ESOMAR principles.

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