Five questions every international student asks
Moving to the UK for your studies? Well, we bet you’ll have these questions.
- Are things expensive in the UK?
Yes and no! You can certainly make your budget work by making smart choices and by working out how much you want to spend during your time in the UK and then working out a monthly budget.
It’s also important to understand that the cost of living can vary greatly from city to city. And it goes without saying that the major cities such as London, Manchester and Edinburgh are more expensive than other smaller cities and broadly the South is more expensive than the North.
The good news is that your student visa allows you to work up to 20 hours a week and students get discounts virtually everywhere, whether that’s on travel, restaurants or in shops.
- How do I find student accommodation?
It’s easier than you may think, with help available from your university and websites such as GoBritanya and StuHomes.
Do your research as there is a wide choice of student accommodation in the UK and all of them have their pros and cons as well as different costs. It is also worth knowing that your university will guarantee you accommodation in student halls, which is a room either on campus or nearby, for the first year.
Start your search early, work out your budget, have a wish list of what you’d like and what kind of accommodation is your desired option. Do you want to be in the thick of it and live with lots of other students or do you want to live with a local family, or would you prefer to live on your own?
- Can I work and study?
If you come to the UK on a Student Visa you will be able to work, do voluntary work and intern for up to 20 hours a week in term time and for as many hours as you like outside term time. And the good news is that most towns and cities with universities have a good supply of part-time jobs that you can do whilst you study.
If you need to work to finance your studies, start your search early by having a well written CV that highlights your skills and talents! Your university will be able to help you find work on or off campus, so reach out to the careers department.
- What should I pack?
Most students overpack in the fear that they won’t be able to find things in the UK, well be assured you can buy everything you will need in the UK at a reasonable price!
If we were going to give you a basic packing list then it would include clothes for all four seasons, a decent coat, a laptop, and a mobile. You might also want to bring some home comforts that will help you get through home sickness.
- Will I be able to get food and ingredients from home?
Absolutely, the UK is an incredible, multicultural place that has had waves of immigration that continues to today but goes back hundreds of years. The result of this is that most places in the UK have restaurants serving up authentic cuisine from around the world and shops selling fresh and packaged ingredients that will help you recreate your favourite dishes, obviously with your mum on speed dial to talk you through how to cook it!