Study in UK for International students can be an overwhelming experience especially if it’s your first time at a University. Most of the undergraduate students in the UK are international students and we understand what must be going on in your mind. There are so many things to consider before moving to a new country- from visas to tuition fees, and health insurance, cheaper student accommodation- the list is never-ending. Don’t worry as we have come up with this step-by-step guide on key things you need to know as International students in the UK.
Our expert counselors have decades of experience and have placed thousands of international students. With the help of this experience, we are putting together a compilation of tips which every International student should know before arriving in the UK.
Plan your finances and research scholarships
For any course you need to study in UK, you should have the finances to fund your degree.
You will get a UK student visa only when you furnish proof or evidence that you can pay your tuition fee along with your living expenses.
If you can’t pay the expenses for yourself, then there are other options available such as international student funding and scholarships. You can also look into education loans or exchange programs.
All International students in UK (from countries outside the EU and the EEA and excluding Switzerland), you need a visa to study in the UK.
However, if your course duration is less than 6 months then you need a short-term student visa to study in the UK. It is important to note that with this visa, you cannot work in the UK which includes work placements as part of your course and part-time jobs. If you are planning to work along with study in UK, then apply for a Tier 4 visa instead.
If your course duration is more than 6 months but less than 11 months, then also you can study in UK with a short-term student visa. Also, the student’s age should be 16 or above and studying an English language course.
Prepare for British life and culture
Undoubtedly, the UK is one of the most diverse nations in the world and a majority of the student population is from overseas. Rest assured, you will find many fellow international students in UK universities. UK has always been very welcoming to its International students.
Even before you land in UK, start searching for Facebook or Linkedin groups related to your University so that you can start interacting with other International students and make some new friends even before you have reached there.
Not to forget that the UK has a very cold climate so do keep lots of woolen clothes and a waterproof jacket for winter months. The summer months are not that hot though.
Sort your student accommodation
Deciding where you will stay in the UK and the kind of accommodation you want is a very crucial decision. It will be better if you start researching your options beforehand. The last thing you would want is to reach there and having no place to stay. It’s a great idea if you get your accommodation sorted even before you land in the UK.
How to go ahead? Your first point of contact should be your University who will assist you in finding a good accommodation. Many UK universities house all their students if they apply before a certain date. If you don’t manage to get the University accommodation which is also called ‘halls of residence’ then you can rent a room from a private landlord.
Halls of residence is the best accomodation for first year students as you don’t need to spend more time in finding a suitable room elsewhere. Also, several Universities have halls only for International students which will be helpful in making new friends easily. Isn’t this amazing? These halls are either self-catered which means you will have access to a shared kitchen where you can cook your own meals or catered where the meals will be provided by the canteen.
Self-catered halls are definitely a cheaper option and also a healthier option as you can try out new recipes and feed your new friends as well. You can also go for a student meal plan.
For International students in UK, there is another option for accommodation which is finding a house near your University area.
Make sure you get health insurance
All international students need health insurance which will cover any expenses or cost for any healthcare they need while they study in UK. If you are from a country outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland, then you have to pay a health surcharge as part of the visa application. This will also give you access to the National Health Service (NHS) during your stay in the UK
Do check your existing health insurances as they may cover your health expenses while you are abroad. Another important thing to remember is that the European Health Insurance Card or the health surcharge you paid will not cover any extra expenses incurred due to any illness or injury.
Set up a student bank account
If your plan is to study in UK for more than a semester then we would suggest you to set up a personal bank account. This will save you from all the hassles, it will be a convenient way to pay bills, keep your money safe and also no need to spend on foreign currency transaction charges. A non-UK bank account will otherwise be a very costly affair for you.
How many hours you are allowed to work
Planning to work along with study in UK? Then don’t get confused and research beforehand. All students who are from a non-EU or non-EEA country can work up to 20 hours per week while studying and full-time during the holidays. This is applicable before and even after your course starts.
For any queries regarding study in UK for international students, contact Get2uni for all your concerns. We will guide you through the whole process and will make sure you face no problem in settling over there. Best part- We don’t charge any fee for our services.