Moving to the UK to study - Urban Student
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Moving to the UK to study

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September is right around the corner and that means so is a brand-new academic year!

Whether you’re taking a year abroad or you’re a fresher, here is everything you need to know if you’re moving to the UK to study as an international student…


Plan your funding

Our first piece of advice for international students in the UK is to make sure you have the money to fund your degree. The funding available to you depends on where you’re from in the world and the date you start uni. A lot has changed since Brexit so it’s important to find out the different types of funding you’re eligible to.

Find out all relevant information here:


Organise your student visa

As an international student coming to the UK, you might need to apply for a visa. If you’re from a country outside the EU/EEA (excluding Switzerland), you’ve always needed a visa to study in the UK. To learn more about what you’re eligible for, check here:

You may have to pay a healthcare surcharge as part of your visa application. This costs £235 for six months or £470 for the whole year and allows you to use the NHS.

If you’re applying for a student visa from outside the UK, you can apply up to six months before you start your course. You have three months if you’re applying from inside the UK (and you must apply before your current visa expires).

You could get a response within a few weeks, but it’s best to apply as soon as possible. Check out the government’s website for a list of visa processing times for each country.


Prepare for British Life

Culturally, the UK is diverse and welcoming of people from all around the world. All universities have plenty of international students, and most have societies to help you meet like-minded people and those from similar backgrounds.

Check out Instagram pages and Facebook groups related to your Uni so you can discuss any questions you have and even make friends before you arrive.

Our Urban Creation Instagram and Facebook pages are also great places to keep up to date with what’s on in the area.


Set up a student bank account

If you’re staying in the UK for longer than a few months, we recommend opening a bank account.

This makes it easier to pay bills and keep your money safe. It also helps you avoid the foreign currency changes you’d pat if you used a non-UK bank account to pay for things in Britain.

Opening a bank account can be a lengthy process, as banks need lots of information to verify your identity and credit rating.

Check whether you’re able to get the ball rolling from your home country to save time. Also look into whether your current bank has any links to UK banks, as this should make the process smoother.


Figure out public transport

We know how daunting it can be trying to figure out different public transport systems when first landing in a new country. Here’s a simple guide.

If you’re looking for local travel – all cities have a local bus service, which is often the best way of getting around. There are plenty of bus links near out Urban Creation student accommodation. It may be worth buying a student buss pass to save money.

If you’re confident enough, travelling by bike can help you save money while being eco-friendly too. At Urban Creation, we currently have a discount on Voi e-bike travel on our guest exclusive Duve app.

If you’re travelling further afield – the two main modes of public transport are coach and train. If you qualify – look into getting a 18-25 railcard for a discount!


Know the hours you’re allowed to work

If you want to make money while you’re studing, you need to know your options and rights to work in the UK.

With your student visa, you’ll be able to work up to 20 hours per week while studying. You can work full-time during the holidays, as well as before and after your course starts. This is different if you have EU settled status. Then are you free to work as many hours as you wish and can work for as long as you want after graduation.


 …and one last final tip:

Have fun!


Check out our student accomodation here


Date Published: Wednesday 30th September 2023 by Phoebe Clutton