Moving abroad can be a tough but exciting decision, here are some common difficulties that every international students are likely to face when moving to the UK.
Language and academic writing
If you are coming from a country where English isn’t the native language, you might feel a little lost. This is normal so don’t get too scared or shy to ask questions, step by step you will feel more confident.
Here are some suggestions to get you started:
- Join an English course, this will help you to learn the basics needed to get you started for everyday situations. Visit our partnered English school The Language Fair if you would like to know more about this.
- As soon as you feel ready, do the International English Language Testing System or better known as IELTS. The IELTS is the world’s most known English language proficiency test for higher education and global migration. This will help you to get into university, start working and live in an English-speaking environment.
- Get some work experience. It will help you to build professional contacts, make friends and understand the lifestyle in the city. To do so, make sure to get your personal National Insurance Number or NIN. Without it, you will not be able to continue working or open a bank account in the UK. Getting a NIN is simple, go the www.gov.uk website and follow the simple steps. Make sure you have all the documents required; your passport or identity card, residence permit, driving license, birth or adoption certificate, marriage, and civil partnership certificate when going to the interview. They will ask you simple questions, like what’s the reason you are applying for the NIN. Speak clearly and with confidence, show your excitement to be part of the community.
When moving abroad it is not always easy to feel as if you fit in immediately. Understandably as the language, lifestyle, etc. are new to you. So, a recommendation is to step out of your comfort zone and get involved in any activity that is of interest to you. Go out with your co-workers or classmates or join a sport that involves teamwork. Try as much as you can to make friends that speak good English. Being around natives will help you to understand the culture and the local slang.
If this is your very first time living without your parents or away from home, is common to feel alone. This is just a momentary stage that it will get better with time.
Keep yourself busy, try to open up with people and start going out with them. You will be pleasantly surprised that many people you meet on your course are experiencing the same things as you are. There’s no better way to get to know someone than by going out with them and exploring the new city you have just moved to.
The UK isn’t the cheapest place to live, especially if you are thinking of moving to London, but it’s a great investment in your future. It is a great place to grow professionally and as an individual.
Get a full-time or part-time job will help you with your everyday expenses
If you are planning to start studying get financially ready as universities in the UK are generally more expensive than the rest of Europe. However, getting a student loan is a great solution to help borrow the money needed to pay the universities fees. Go to the GOV.UK website and search for student finance and follow the steps. As soon as you finish your degree you can start paying back your loan choosing different plans depending on your income and preferences.
Balancing Social, Work, and School
Make sure to plan your day. Priorities like school come first. Remember that you are investing in your future. Gaining a first class degree or a high level makes the difference when it comes to applying for masters or jobs afterward. It is also important to get some job experience, possibly, in the field you are studying. Combining school and work can be tricky and stressful at times but it will help you stand out from the rest.
You will probably think that there is not time for everything, and you are right, there is not! The life of a student abroad is challenging, that’s why having good time management is important and helpful for your everyday activities. So, here are some time management tips for you:
- Prioritize wisely. Make sure to support your short and long-term goals.
- Plan ahead. Plan your activities in advance so you are aware of how your week will look like.