A bedroom in a halls of residence University of Portsmouth

Living in halls

Information on moving in and ongoing safety measures 

All our halls of residence are open, with safety measures and guidance in place to keep you safe – from deep-cleaning your room before you arrive, to installing sanitiser stations and making our reception areas contactless. Welfare support from our Residence Life Team is also available whenever you need it, 24 hours a day, every day.

Rent reduction

If your hall of residence is managed by the University of Portsmouth or The Student Housing Company, you only need to pay for 38 weeks out of your 40-week contract (check your hall page if you're not sure who manages your hall). You won't be charged for the first 2 weeks because we've extended the moving in period from 4 days to 2 weeks to enable social distancing or quarantine if required.

If you're moving into Rosalind Franklin Hall, your rent has been reduced by £10 per week due to Unite not having been able to carry out some planned enhancements due to the current lockdown.

Two students talking and laughing

Moving in

To allow for social distancing when you move in, we may ask you to book a moving in slot so the entrances to halls don’t get overcrowded. (But don’t worry – this slot is flexible if you get delayed.)

If you need to change your slot after you book it, contact the Student Housing Team by email at student.housing@port.ac.uk.

Safety measures when moving in

Contactless reception

When you arrive at your halls, you’ll be greeted by our contactless reception team. The reception will have a sanitiser station at the entrance and you’ll be asked to respect social distancing, along with our staff members helping to settle you in. Once you’re registered at reception, you’ll get your keys/access cards and anything else you need.

Entering halls

For your safety, you should wear a face covering when you’re moving in. 

You’ll be given a disposable face covering on arrival, to wear on the day, and a washable face covering in your Welcome Pack, but it’s best to come prepared with your own. When you arrive, you’ll also find sanitiser stations at the entrance to all our halls.

You’re welcome to bring as many family members or friends with you to help you move in – after all, this is a big step for all of you. But to help with social distancing, we ask that only one family member enters your halls with you at any one time.


As always, your room will be deep-cleaned before you arrive.

Cleaners will sanitise communal areas and all fixtures and fittings, such as door handles. You’ll also find University staff members on-hand, who can direct you to your room and help promote social distancing.

Travelling with symptoms

Please don’t travel to Portsmouth or move into your halls if you – or anyone you’re travelling with – has symptoms of COVID-19. If you or someone you live with has symptoms you need to follow the NHS’s stay at home and self-isolation advice in line with government guidance.

Arriving from overseas

According to current government guidelines on entering the UK, you'll need to stay in your halls and self-quarantine for the first 14 days you're in the UK. 

If this applies to you, you can move into halls from 12 September (3 weeks before teaching starts). You won't be charged for the 14-day quarantine period. You'll only be charged from 26 September. This is the case for halls owned by the University of Portsmouth and The Student Housing Company – check your hall page if you're not sure who manages your hall. 

All our halls have the support of our Residence Life Team who can provide you with food deliveries. All rooms have free WiFi to keep you connected online.

Female student working in halls

Ongoing safety measures in halls

Our safety measures won’t end on the day you move in. As a resident in our halls, we’ll provide you with:

  • Regular deep-cleaning of your communal areas such as kitchens, shared bathrooms, hallways
  • Cleaning materials and cleaning guidance, so you can wipe down communal fixtures between deep-cleans
  • Sanitiser stations in key spots around buildings
  • Contactless post-collection
  • Limits on the number of people who can use lifts

Your ‘household’

If you move into self-catered halls, everyone you share a kitchen with becomes your ‘household’. If you’re in catered halls and you don’t have a separate flat, students in your neighbouring rooms become your ‘household’.

To reduce infection in your shared ‘household’, regularly wash your hands for 20 seconds using soap and water or hand sanitiser. Also cover any coughs or sneezes with a tissue or your elbow, and wash your hands immediately after.

Meeting students outside your ‘household’

Based on government guidelines to Stay Alert, you shouldn’t let others from outside your household into your home. This includes letting other students into spaces you share with your household, such as your shared kitchen or bathrooms.

Instead, you can currently arrange to meet up to 6 people from other households in open spaces. Portsmouth has many beaches, piers and parks which are perfect places to meet up with friends and students from other households until the restrictions are lifted. You could also use our unlimited access to Google Meet to set up quizzes, movie nights and study groups with students outside your household.

COVID-19 symptoms in your ‘household’

If you or someone else in your household develops symptoms or tests positive for coronavirus, you need to follow Government guidelines for households.

If you develop symptoms of COVID-19 in halls, no matter how mild, you must:

  • Self-isolate for at least 7 days and continue to do so if your symptoms don’t improve
  • Arrange to be tested for coronavirus
  • Stay away from other members of your household as much as possible
  • Stay away from clinically vulnerable members of your household

If a member of your household develops symptoms of COVID-19 or is confirmed to have it, you must self-isolate for 14 days from the day they developed symptoms.

You’ll get support from our Residence Life Team who can provide you with food deliveries. All our rooms have free WiFi included to keep you connected online.

Perks of living in halls

Perks include: 

  • 38-week contracts from 26 September with no charge for early arrival from 12 September 2020
  • Shorter contracts available for Teaching Block 1 if you go on exchange in Teaching Block 2 (your contract can be extended if you don't go)
  • Free broadband and WiFi
  • All bills included in the cost of your room – gas, electricity, heating, water and basic insurance
  • Every room has a bed, desk, drawers and plenty of sockets for your laptop, phone and other devices
  • The majority of our rooms are en-suite, with private shower, sink and toilet
  • We have accessible rooms for students who need them, approved by AccessAble (formerly known as DisabledGo)
  • All our rooms are singles, and they're yours for the entire academic year – even over the Easter and Christmas holidays
  • Our Residence Life Team provides pastoral care 24 hours a day, every day

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