Planning to Live and study in the UK
A melting pot of cultures and the friendly smiles of a nation.
Home to Stonehenge; one of the seven wonders of the world, the UK is rich in history, culture, languages and spectacular landscapes that make you want to settle in the lush hills and immerse yourself in the peace that surrounds it.
Encircled by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea on the east, the English Channel bordering the south and the Celtic Sea hugging the southwest, the UK consists of four countries; England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland.
Living conditions, cost of living, the environment and weather and so many more aspects of living in UK depend on which country or city you choose to live and study in.
Why study in the UK?
In essence; excellence, institutions of a higher caliber, increased flexibility.
Moreover, the importance UK sets on international students and their potential for growth, the global recognition afforded to students through study courses, grants, scholarships and student loans, comparatively lower educational costs, existence of multicultural ethnicities and job openings and opportunities to obtain permanent residence are yet more reasons on why the UK is a viable and great study destination.
Don’t let rumours scare you into the belief that expenses are too high in UK. Like with all situations, there are ways around every challenge. By cutting corners, costs can be minimized and life made affordable and effectively productive and worthwhile.
You may even have the opportunity for an occasional splurge and go exploring the quaint flea and street markets in London like Borough Market (just a two minute walk from the London Bridge Station), Covent Garden, Camden Market and Brick Lane Market which are but, only a very few of the markets where you may lose yourself in the old-world charm the city.
Living in UK
Living expenses as a student in UK will vary according to the city and whether the University has accommodation to offer. You can save the odd pound here and there when it comes to accommodation by choosing the best option available. Other living expenses just like anywhere in the rest of the world would be;
- Utility bills
- Study materials
- Telephone (landline/mobile)
Types of accommodation
Accommodation is the basic need that must be thoroughly researched and taken an informed decision on. Once this is sorted you can take a look at the rest of the aspects of your study-journey.
If you require accommodation within the university set-up, it should be informed at the outset. The international student gets precedence, so there is always a good chance of procuring student accommodation if you are one.
a. Halls of Residence
This is a large building divided into smaller units or flats. According to personal preference you may either opt for a single room or shared. Bathrooms may be attached or communal. The cafeteria will provide food at a fixed cost. Halls of residence is the cheaper option in comparison to the rest.
b. Self-Catered Halls
International students may prefer Self-Catered Halls as it allows them the freedom to cook the food of their choice within their own time-frame. The downside of this is maintaining cleanliness, since the kitchens are communal and everyone may not be inclined to be neat and clean.
Though this is the most extravagant option, it provides the most freedom. However, take note of the legalities when signing tenancy agreements and seek help from your student counsellor if required.
d. Travel accommodations
Some may choose one country to live in and another to study in. Hence, travel may be by air or rail depending on the cost. This will be a good option for those with the travel bug and who like to make the most of their stay.
Sticking to a budget
Once deciding which type of accommodation, you will opt for, this is an important measure to be taken next so that you can ascertain if your budget allows you to study in UK comfortably or not.
1. List your expenses
Budgeting will make your task more streamlined and afford you the chance to evaluate your real-time situation with more detailed information.
2. Add it up
Don’t let the numbers discourage you.
3. Cut back
Once you have an average figure, start cutting back on expenses that you may think are unnecessary. You will arrive at a feasible budget that you are comfortable with and will work well for both you and your parents who may be funding you.
Summing it all up
Once you have done your research, chosen the type of accommodation, fixed your budgeting and done whatever tweaking that is necessary to your plan, venture out on your journey with pride and a spirit of adventure; knowing that you are on a path to conquer the world step by little step.
Our warmest wishes to you on your courageous student voyage!
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