Like many, I came to the UK for pursuing higher education. I felt like I had many exciting opportunities to explore as I had challenges to overcome. Being an international student is not easy. Being away from family, homesickness is your constant friend for the initial few weeks. Have you felt the same way since you moved? If we are on the same boat, keep reading.
As an international student, it does take a little while to comprehend the culture, language, people, the new way of life in general. However, the first month imperceptibly fades into the next and by the time you get a hang of the place, it is time for you to leave.
Here are my 5 essential tips to settling into UK student life – from saving money to making new friends.
Expect the unexpected, but more so often, expect it to rain. The weather in the UK can be so fickle, that you may have to carry an umbrella, a winter jacket and your sun shades all in one day. The best thing about the UK weather is that you can have a conversation with your new-found friend for hours and you would still not be bored. So, yes, come prepared with all your necessary gears.
Learn to cook:
Believe me, on this, it does get boring after a while eating at KFCs and MCDs. You might also think of eating at a local restaurant but that option is not very sustainable. Cooking is an important life skill and one must especially learn to cook before starting university to save a fortune. When you buy ingredients, even if it is for a pizza, you will soon realize the amount of money you can save at university instead of ordering food or eating outside. If you have never cooked food properly before then perhaps looking for “cooking classes near me” and finding your nearest cooking class could help you get the basics and a little more to give you these vital life skills that you will need forever.
Work while you study: Get in touch with your university’s student union. A lot of part-time jobs are advertised on the student union website. It is good to have an income that covers your basic needs. There are many jobs that are available for students that will fit around your studies.
Attend the fresher’s week and join societies:
Student unions host a variety of events and activities during the first month of the term to help international students adjust to their university life. University tour, city tour and fresher’s week to name a few. Make sure to register to your favourite society, you will find a society for just about everything and if you don’t you are free to create one.
Use your student card to the fullest: Your student ID card can help you save a lot of money. Luckily there are many discounts that are offered to students in the UK. From restaurants to online stores, gyms to transport, if you have your student id card, you could get what you like at slashed prices. Keep an eye out for available discounts and don’t be shy to ask.