Things To Do To Help You Settle Fast As A Student In The UK
Updated: Apr 11
Arriving in the UK as an international student can be a lot to take in. It is in fact more accurate to say that for most people, being away from home can be overwhelming - from meeting new people, to accommodating the new culture and settling in. So to help you prepare for your new life at university, we have put together some university tips that will help you settle in fast as an international student in the UK.
1. Don’t miss your university induction
Inductions are designed to give you the best possible start to your academic journey on campus as a fresher. Inductions are important because it helps you understand how you are expected to study, it is a great opportunity to meet your course lecturers and make new friends, who are usually in the exact same position as you, to mention a few. Inductions usually also involve a tour around campus and nearby resource places, which is undoubtedly something that will come in handy when you start to explore the new environment all by yourself.
2. See if your university has an airport welcome package for international students, take advantage of it if they do
Most universities usually have airport welcome packages which help you settle in as an international student. This typically consists of customised travel instructions to guide you from your arrival airport to campus and an International Student Welcome Day where you meet other international students.
3. Register with your GP
General practitioners are usually the first medical point of contact with the NHS if you have a health problem. They are responsible for patient care and medical advice. Anyone living in the UK can register with a GP surgery, free of charge. You also need an NHS number, ID, proof of address, and immigration status. As an international student, ensure you register with one on arrival in the UK. Click here to find a GP in your local area.
4. Open a bank account and budget
Getting a UK bank account is one of my top university advice for settling in. Most banks need you to start the application process online before visiting a physical location. Typically, you will require your passport, Biometric Residence Permit Card and a university bank letter, with certain banks requiring extra documentation, depending on the bank you select. We recommend looking at what each bank has to offer and deciding what is ideal for your requirements.
Purchasing items in a foreign currency is challenging, especially when the conversion rate is high, it is best to carry enough cash, in the event that there is a delay in opening a bank account. In addition, using budgeting apps or keeping a log of all your purchases is a fantastic method to manage your money, so you'll know when to cut back on extravagances or when you can treat yourself.
5. Know your neighbours and make friends with them
For everyone who moves to a new environment, you are going to meet different personalities, with different cultures and interests. You should use this to your advantage. You may not see the need for it yet, but your neighbours and friends you make are likely to become your family at university. On days where you need an extra hand, they’re most likely the ones who would be there or come through for you, so suppress that shy spirit and be open!
6. Know and learn bus routes
Navigating a new environment can be tricky and it sometimes takes trial and error to figure out various routes. On arrival in the UK, it is advised that you pay attention to your city’s bus routes as it will help you to explore your new environment better. Just as well, study the map and various transportation options available.
7. Join a community and ask questions
Most of the things you would learn would come from word of mouth so join a community like church or a mosque if you are religious and a student union. In the event of an issue regarding students, the student union usually gets involved. So also, they keep students up to date with information and actively work to make sure they make the most out of their time in the university. Most universities have Nigerian Student Unions (NSU) or Afro Caribbean Student Association (ACSA).
Also do not forget “Google is your friend”. Anything you are unsure of, you can easily make inquiries on the internet or ask for directions.
8. Get a job
Living in the UK can be very expensive, especially for international students. One of the easiest ways to juggle this is taking on part-time student jobs that allow you to conveniently combine work and study. Regardless of your availability period, there are lots of job opportunities that can fit into your schedule. Visit www.aupairmatchuk.com/studentjobagency to register your interest in student jobs in the UK and be notified about student jobs in your local area.
I hope you had a good read-through and if not enjoyed it, you at least found it useful. If you are interested in getting live updates about student jobs in the UK, kindly register your interest and be informed when we go live with student job ads in the UK. Just as well, if you are a foreigner who would like to stay updated on our recruitment service for care jobs, nursing, and doctor jobs, kindly register your interest and stay informed.
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