Overseas students in Dundee could avoid coronavirus quarantine at Scottish hotels, with university bosses in talks with the government about on-campus alternatives.
It was reported that several universities had asked the Scottish Government if overseas students arriving in the country could avoid the mandatory hotel quarantine period.
Under the current coronavirus rules in Scotland, anyone arriving from overseas must quarantine in a hotel at a cost of £1,750 for 10 days.
But some universities have said this could be a barrier for international students, arguing for them to be allowed to undertake their isolation on-campus instead.
Universities Scotland said it was “sensible” to undertake a pilot.
A spokesperson said: “We want to make best possible use of this planning time available to us and we think a pilot exercise is a sensible route.
“Students start a relationship with their university months before they arrive, so they already have that connection, and we think quarantining in a university-managed arrangement could offer more students more practical and wellbeing support whilst maintaining high standards of Covid safety.”
Each year around 20 per cent of Scottish university students come from either the EU or elsewhere in the world.
A spokesperson for the University of Dundee said a pilot for such an alternative was currently underway at a number of other universities.
The BBC reported that it was not known which universities planned to take part, but added that Heriot-Watt University, the University of Stirling, and the University of Aberdeen had all expressed an interest.
A spokesperson for the University of Dundee told The Courier: “We are currently awaiting further guidance from the Scottish Government regarding on-campus quarantine for students arriving from overseas, which is currently being piloted at a number of other universities in Scotland.
The Scottish government is currently exploring options for managed isolation
“The majority of overseas arrivals are not expected until late summer/early autumn, in line with the start of the next academic year.
“We will continue to offer support and advice to any students arriving in the UK, in line with UK and Scottish Government advice on international travel to the UK.”
The Scottish Government said: “Restrictions around international travel are in place to limit the risk of importing new cases and variants to Scotland.
“The Scottish government is currently exploring options for managed isolation with the university sector.”