Guide for International Students 2019/20 - University of the Arts London

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Guide for International Students 2019/20 - University of the Arts London
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Guide for International Students 2019/20 - University of the Arts London

University of the Arts London      Welcome from Associate Dean,             3   Things to know before you get here      25     Shopping                          47
                                   International Student Experience               Visas                                 26       Markets and fairs               48
272 High Holborn,                                                                 Insurance                             26       Refunds and returns             48
London                             Welcome from Arts Students’ Union        5     Booking your plane ticket             26       Money-saving tips               49
WC1V 7EY                                                                          Airports                              26
                                     University of the Arts London          7     Airport Collection Service            27     Travelling around London          51
+44 (0)20 7514 6000                    Term dates                           7     Packing your belongings               27        Zones                          52
                                       Opening times                        7     Banned and restricted items           27        The Underground                52
                                                                                  Money                                 27        Buses                          52
How to use this guide:
                                   Things to know about UAL                 9     Electricity                           27        Above ground trains            52
                                     Student Services                      10                                                     Ways to pay                    52
     Search online at     Diversity                             10   Things to do after you get here         29        Walking                        52
     Find out more online            Disability and dyslexia               10     Open a bank account                   29        Cycling                        53
     Telephone number                Counselling Health Advice,            10     Register with a doctor                29        Cars                           53
                                     and Chaplaincy Service                       UK visas and registering with ORVO    29        Taxis                          53
     Email address
                                     Libraries and Learning Zones          10
                                     Books and materials                   10   Things to know about living in London   31     Travelling around the UK          53
                                     English, other languages and          11     Accommodation                         32        Travelling abroad              53
Connect with us:
                                     intercultural skills                         Council Tax                           33
                                     Academic support                      11     Staying safe                          34     Working while studying            55
                                     Academic culture                      12     Keeping in touch                      35       National Insurance              55
     unioftheartslondon              Academic success                      14        Mobile/cell phones                 35       Income tax                      55
     UAL                             Alumni & Friends                      14        International calls                35       Applying for a job              55
     universityoftheartslondon       Degree classifications                14        Internet/broadband                 35
                                     Assessment                            14        Postal service                     35   Things to know about                57
                                     UAL online resources                  16                                                Arts Students’ Union
                                        Moodle                             16     Arts Students’ Union guide to         37     Students’ Union Representatives   58
                                        UAL Portfolio tool                 16     exploring London                             Advice Service                    58
                                        Library catalogue                  16        Museums and galleries              38   Societies and sports                59
                                        University Archives, Museums       16        ‘Late’ events                      38     Student Initiative Fund           59
                                        and Special Collections                      Students’ Union recommends         38     Advice Service                    59
                                        University IT services             17        Taking time out                    39     Course representatives            59
                                        WiFi access                        27        Getting active                     39     Made in Arts London               59
                                                                                     Meeting new people                 39     Arts Unlocked London              59
                                   Things to know about the UK             19        UAL Social & Arts SU               39
                                     Climate                               20        Multi-cultural city                40   Map of UAL sites                    60
                                     Seasons                               20
                                     Daylight Saving Time                  20     Food and drink                        43
                                     Date and time                         20       Traditional British food            44
                                     Culture                               21       Pubs and alcohol                    44
                                     Religion                              21       Eating and drinking out             44
Published by University              Customs and rules                     21       Eating in                           45
of the Arts London, 2019             Slang and Colloquialisms Dictionary   22       Supermarkets                        45
                                                                                    Online shopping                     45
Design: Studio LP
                                                                                    International food                  45
Illustration: Josh McKenna
Hello and welcome to University of the Arts London!
           Studying at university in a different country to your
           own is both a brave and exciting thing to do.

           You will be joining a multinational, multicultural, creative community in one
           of the world’s most stimulating and exciting capitals.

           University of the Arts London (UAL) is a vibrant community of 19,000 students
           from more than 130 countries. It’s located in one of the best cities in the world
           for art and design, with lots of opportunities to make the most of student life.

           We hope this guide will answer your questions and give you some ideas
           about how to make the most of your experience with us at UAL.

           We look forward to welcoming you,

           Helen Mcallister
           Associate Dean, International Student Experience

Contents   Guide for International Students                                          2         3
Students’ unions are student-run organisations totally
                        independent from and different to the university.

                        What makes students’ unions special is that we are run by democratically
                        elected students, representing you within the university and beyond. Every
                        students’ union is different, but most of them, like Arts Students’ Union
                        (Arts SU), offer a range of different services where you can meet new
                        people or get support. We have sports clubs, student-run societies, course
                        representatives, free advice, and campaigns support - basically, we exist to
                        make things better for you.

                        By enrolling at UAL, you’re automatically a member of our union (you lucky
                        thing) and it’s our job to look out for you and make your student experience
                        as enjoyable as possible.

                        We’ve helped to put together this handy guide to support you as you

 Hello! We are your
                        settle into London life. It’s packed with practical stuff like information about
                        banks and how to register with a doctor but also includes lots of fun tips,
                        recommendations (including getting the most out of your studies), and

Arts Students’ Union.
                        information about London. We hope you have a fantastic time at UAL and
                        enjoy exploring the city!

                        Please do come and say ‘hi’ to us - we’re excited to get to know you.

                        Arts Students’ Union

Contents                Guide for International Students                                            4      5
You’ve chosen to start your creative future at University
           of the Arts London (UAL), which is made up of six world-
           renowned colleges:

           Camberwell College of Arts
           Central Saint Martins
           Chelsea College of Arts
           London College of Communication
           London College of Fashion
           Wimbledon College of Arts

           Term dates                                        Summer term 2020
           These are the general term dates for 2019/20                               Tuesday 14 April 2020
           but specific dates may vary for some courses.                              – Friday 19 June 2020
           Term dates depend on whether you are in:                                   Monday 13 April 2020
           • Higher Education (HE), for example a                                      – Friday 22 May 2020
              undergraduate or postgraduate degree
           • Further Education (FE), for example a           National holidays 2020
              foundation course                              New year’s day                1 January 2020
                                                             Easter weekend        10 April – 13 April 2020
           Autumn term 2019                                  May bank holidays           4 & 25 May 2020
                          Monday 23 September 2019
                             – Friday 6 December 2019             ‘Term dates’
                            Monday 2 September 2019
                            – Friday 13 December 2019        Opening times
                                                             UAL is always open during term-time and
           National holidays 2019                            closed on national holidays. Opening times
           Easter weekend         19 April – 22 April 2019   vary, so please check the arrangements at
           May bank holidays            6 & 27 May 2019      your college.
           Summer bank holiday            26 August 2019
           Christmas Day              25 December 2019       Student fees and funding
           Boxing Day                 26 December 2019       including scholarships
                                                             The Student Advice and Funding Service
           Spring term 2020                                  provide students with information and advice
                                    Monday 6 January 2020    about funding options available to cover tuition
                                    – Friday 13 March 2020   fees, living costs and course costs. You
                                    Monday 6 January 2020    can also find out more about scholarships,
                                    – Friday 27 March 2020   bursaries and awards.

                                                                  ‘Student fees and funding’

Contents   Guide for International Students                                                        6        7
> Things to know about UAL

           In addition to high-quality teaching, modern facilities
           and creative space for you to explore your ideas, skills
           and unique vision, UAL can provide you with support
           with your studies and wellbeing.

Contents   Guide for International Students                     8     9
Student Services                                    Counselling Health Advice,                        English, other languages and                     Academic Support
Student Services at UAL includes the Student        and Chaplaincy Service                            intercultural skills                             We want to help you develop and improve
Advice Service, the Disability Service and          The Counselling, Health Advice and                If you are multilingual and speak English as     skills which are relevant to your studies and
Counselling, Health Advice and Chaplaincy.          Chaplaincy Service offers support to all          an additional language, UAL Language Centre      your professional future. Academic Support
                                                    University of the Arts London students for        offers English language tutorials, classes and   tutors will be introduced to you during your
Our Student Services staff provide free,            personal, emotional, health and mental            resources to help you specifically with your     induction events and you can find resources
professional and confidential services to all       health concerns as well as in spiritual,          subject area studies and to continue to build    and links to individual and group sessions in
UAL students. We understand that talking            religious and faith related matters.              your English language proficiency. All support   your college and across UAL.
about problems and how you are feeling might                                                          is free to full time students.
be uncomfortable and new to you. But it’s               ‘Counselling Health and Chaplaincy’                                                                ‘Academic Support online’
important you let us know so we can find a                                                            We also offer evening courses in Arabic,
way to support you and make the most of your        Libraries and Learning Zones                      French, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin and
time here. There are lots of different things we    You can access all six college libraries; just    Spanish, all taught in the context of art and
can help you with, including:                       bring your student card to start exploring        culture, as well as intercultural skills.
                                                    and borrowing. Our libraries have group and
•   visa and other immigration matters              individual study zones, access to computers,          ’Language centre’
•   financial matters                               photocopying and printing. You can also
•   support to overcome barriers to your study      borrow a laptop and get help from the library
•   if you’re worried about something, feeling      staff to find what you need.
    emotional or just want to talk
                                                    Learning Zones are also available for social
     ‘Student Services’                             and activity-based study in an informal
                                                    environment. We will tell you more about the
Diversity                                           library facilities during your first term when
We want UAL to be an inclusive and                  you attend an introduction.
supportive environment for everyone.
We are committed to promoting equality,                 ‘Library services’
inclusion and diversity on grounds of age,
disability, gender, gender identity, nationality,   Books and materials
race, religious belief (or no belief), sexual       You’ll be given a book and course supply list
orientation or socioeconomic class.                 during the first week of classes. Many items
                                                    will be available from the university shops,
     ‘Student diversity’                            located at the college sites. Your tutor can
                                                    also tell you about shops which sell affordable
Disability and dyslexia                             supplies and materials.
The Disability Service provides advice and
support for disabled students and to students
who are dyslexic or have any other specific
learning difficulty. Support is available at any
point throughout your time at UAL.

     ‘Disability and dyslexia’

     Contents                                                                                         Guide for International Students                                                      10         11
Academic culture

The language used in your classes may be different       1. Associate Lecturers
                                                         often guest lecturers who
                                                                                            6. Dissertation
                                                                                            depending on your course,
                                                                                                                            10. Technicians
                                                                                                                            staff who will demonstrate
to what you’re used to so we’ve put together a list of   work in the industry you are       you might need to write a       and support you with

commonly used words:                                     learning about                     long essay in your final year
                                                                                            which contributes towards
                                                                                                                            technical parts of your course,
                                                                                                                            such as operating machinery
                                                         2. Course & Unit Handbooks         your degree                     or using special materials
                                                         really important documents
                                                         which are useful to read           7. Self Directed Learning       11. Tutor
                                                         because they contain all           sometimes students are          teacher (probably the
                                                         the information about your         encouraged to follow their      teaching staff you’ll see most)
                                                         course, assignments, learning      own interests, rather than
                                                         outcomes, deadlines and            tutors directing them. This     12. Unit Assessment Brief
                                                         essential reading lists            may take time to get used to    this explains what you
                                                                                            if you have not experienced     need to do for your specific
                                                         3. Course Leader                   it before but will help you     assignment and how it will
                                                         they manage the course             develop different skills        be marked
                                                         and your tutors; if you have
                                                         any issues they are the            8. Plagiarism                   13. Tutorial
                                                         person to contact                  presenting someone else’s       one to one session with an
                                                                                            work or ideas as your own,      academic member of staff,
                                                         4. Crit                            with or without permission      where you discuss and get
                                                         an opportunity to discuss          and without making it clear     advice about your work
                                                         your work and ideas with           that the work or ideas are
                                                         tutors and students                someone else’s. It’s a form     14. Formative Assessment
                                                                                            of academic misconduct so       assessment that supports
                                                         5. Cultural Capital                never copy from any source      your learning and will not
                                                         the unique combination             on the internet or a book       count towards your final mark
                                                         of skills, experiences and         without showing where it
                                                         personal history each              came from                       15. Summative Assessment
                                                         student brings to the learning                                     assessment that assesses
                                                         environment which can be           9. Subject Librarian            your learning and will count
                                                         shared to enrich the learning      a special librarian who         towards your final mark
                                                         experience for everyone            knows about the library
                                                                                            resources available for a
                                                                                            particular area of studies
                                                                                            and how to find them

  Contents                                               Guide for International Students                                                       12         13
Academic success                                 Degree classifications
Sometimes university can feel a bit confusing    In the UK, when you finish and pass your
and different to what you’re used to in your     degree, you will also get a ‘classification’
home country. Don’t worry though as you          showing how well you did. The classifications
aren’t the only one feeling a little lost and    are as follows:
these tips should help you find your way:
                                                 • At FE level eg Foundation Degree, you can
• Ask questions when the tutor gives you an        Pass and on some courses get a Merit
  opportunity. This shows you are interested       or a Distinction. Distinction is the highest
  and thinking carefully about what they are       classification at this level.
  saying; there are no silly questions and the
  tutors are here to help you                    • At undergraduate level eg BA or BSc, you
• Talk to other students about what you are        can get a 3rd (third), a 2:2 (two two), a 2:1
  learning and how your projects are going.        (two one) or a 1st (first). First is the highest
  Talking to each other helps you come up          classification at undergraduate level.
  with new ideas. Learning to work with,
  and listening to, different people is a very   • At postgraduate level eg MA or PG Diploma,
  important skill to have                          you can get a Pass, Merit or Distinction.
• Join social activities and events for            Distinction if the highest classification at
  students. This will help you make friends        postgraduate level.
  across UAL, outside of your course
  and college                                    If you want to progress from undergraduate to
• Use the Academic Support, English              postgraduate levels of study, it’s best to aim for
  Language Development, online resources,        a 2:1 or 1st at undergraduate level, as this will
  Libraries and Student Services; they are       make it easier for you to get accepted onto a
  here to help everyone do the best they can     postgraduate course.
  in their studies
• Experiment and try new things;                 Assessment
  challenging yourself to explore new            It is important you understand what criteria
  things will help you grow as an individual.    your work is being assessed against so
  Don’t be afraid to fail as you can only        you can focus on those things. You may
  learn from mistakes                            find assessment methods different to what
                                                 you have experienced before. You will find
Alumni & Friends                                 information about assessment in your course
The UAL Alumni Association is the world’s        materials (online) and on the UAL website.
largest creative network, with over 200,000
members across the globe. After you graduate,
you will automatically become a member
and will be able to access support and stay
connected with the colleges and other alumni,
wherever you are in the world.

    ‘Alumni & friends’

    Contents                                                                                          14   15
UAL online resources                                Library catalogue                                   University IT services
Make the most of the huge collection of print and   As a UAL student you have access to all six         IT Services looks after all the digital stuff
online resources you can access while studying      college libraries; just use your ID card to         at UAL including your account, your email,
at UAL. Here are some of the resources.             borrow books and other items. You can also          computers, printing and online security.
                                                    search the online catalogue and have books
Moodle                                              sent to the library that’s easiest for you to get   WiFi access
This is our virtual learning environment (VLE)      to, and return them to any college library.         Connect to UAL-WiFi using your UAL
and it’s where you’ll find information specific                                                         username or email and password.
to your course, including your timetable and        University Archives, Museums
the course handbook as well as your grades          and Special Collections
throughout the year. Your course site will have     The libraries have outstanding physical
important announcements and assignment              and digital collections in art, design,
details and should be checked regularly.            communication, fashion and performance.
                                                    These collections include historical archives                               and special collections such as zines, material
    or access via MyUAL app                         samples and artists’ books.

UAL Portfolio tool                                  You can also access the University Archives
Get creative with UAL’s showcasing platform         and Special Collections Centre at LCC which
Portfolio, where you can present your work          specialises in material on printing, graphics
alongside other UAL students from various           and film, including the famous Stanley Kubrick
subject areas. You can create a profile from the    Archive. Other collections in the university
start of your course, and update your projects      include the LCF Archive and the Museum and
right through to two years after graduation.        Study Collection at CSM.
Portfolio enables you to show the world your
work and projects, share your creative skills           ‘Collections and archives
and interests, as well as connect and network
with peers from across UAL.

    Contents                                                                                            Guide for International Students                16   17
> Things to know about the United Kingdom

           The United Kingdom, or the UK, is made up of England,
           Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Known for being
           an island nation of tea drinkers and its unpredictable
           weather, it’s home to over 60 million people, creating a
           multicultural society with people from all over the world.

Contents   Guide for International Students                    18   19
British climate                                     Daylight Saving Time                             Culture                                          Customs and rules
Although London’s climate is moderate, it’s         To make the most of daylight, the clocks         Culturally, the UK is very welcoming of people   A few important rules and customs to keep
often changeable and difficult to predict. It is    change twice a year in the UK. They are          from around the world – and London is much       in mind:
advisable for students to have clothing for a       moved forward by one hour in March, for          more diverse in languages, accents and
variety of conditions including rain. The coldest   what is known as British Summer Time,            ethnicities than the rest of the UK. Although    • In the UK everyone is considered equal in
months tend to be November through to               and are turned back by one hour in October.      you may find the pace of life very fast in         status with the same rights.
February and warm clothing is needed for                                                             London, people are mostly friendly and willing   • Basic politeness will help you – saying
these months of the year.                           Clocks go forward               31 March 2019    to help if you ask.                                ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ is recommended
                                                    Clocks go back                27 October 2019                                                       and people are more friendly if you
Seasons                                             Clocks go forward              29 March 2020     UAL has its own community of followers on          approach them politely
                                                    Clocks go back                25 October 2020    Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and some        • People in Britain ‘queue’ (or line up)
Winter                   December – February                                                         have specific groups related to your course or     when waiting for a service. It’s considered
Spring                           March – May         Tip If you find yourself confused about which   college, so you can ask any questions before       rude to place yourself in front of those
Summer                         June – August        way the clocks are moving, remember to use       coming to London.                                  already waiting
Autumn                  September – November        the helpful phrase ‘spring forward, fall back’                                                    • It’s considered bad manners and a
                                                                                                     You can also find advice and tips                  punishable offence in some areas to spit or
Although the seasonal differences in Britain        Date and time                                    from international students on                     to throw rubbish (litter) in the streets
are not as extreme as in some countries,            To avoid missing an important meeting or website.                  • You are expected to arrive on time for
there is still a large difference between winter    event, it’s important to remember the format                                                        meetings, appointments and your classes.
and summer. The seasons often overlap or            for writing dates and time in the UK. British    Religion                                           If you’re going to be late, it’s polite to tell
don’t follow the standard pattern. Expect rain,     dates are written in day-month-year format       London’s cultural diversity brings many            the person/people you are meeting
snow, wind and sunshine; sometimes all on           (1 September 2019 or 01/09/19). The time         different faiths together with a variety of      • Smoking isn’t allowed in any enclosed
the same day!                                       can either be written using the 12-hour clock    places available throughout the city catering      place, public building or on public transport
                                                    (3.30pm), or the 24-hour clock (15.30) which     to everyone. Many of our college sites also        in the UK. This also applies to e-cigarettes
                                                    is most common with industries such as           offer non-denominational prayer rooms for          and vapes, so always look for a designated
                                                    transport, the police and the military.          you to use.                                        smoking area


    Contents                                                                                         Guide for International Students                                                       20       21
Slang and Colloquialisms Dictionary:                           1. Allow it                (vb)     11. Daft                 (adj)      23. Nice one         (adj phrase)
30 common British words and phrases                            another way of saying ‘forget       another way of saying stupid        a common phrase, used either
                                                               it’ or leave something alone                                            sarcastically or sincerely. If
                                                                                                   12. Dodgy                  (adj)    used sarcastically, it means
UK slang and colloquialisms (informal words and phrases)       2. Alright?         (exclam)        used to refer to something          something similar to when
                                                               a common greeting similar to        that’s wrong or illegal             someone says ‘good job’ to
can be difficult to understand, even for students from other   ‘How are you?’                                                          someone who has completely
English-speaking countries, so here are some of the more                                           13. Dosh                (adj)       messed something up. When
                                                               3. Banter                     (n)   another way of saying money         used sincerely, it’s usually a
common slang words and phrases that you might hear.            a funny/joke filled conversation                                        form of praise
                                                                                                   14. Excuse me         (phrase)
                                                               4. Booze                      (n)   used when addressing a              24. Peckish               (adj)
Remember, UAL and London are multicultural so people will      another word for alcohol            stranger, when interrupting or      another way of saying you
be interested to hear interesting words and phrases from                                           disagreeing with someone,           are hungry
                                                               5. Buff/fit                 (adj)   or to ask someone to repeat
other languages too.                                           another way of saying               what they said                      25. Quid                   (n)
                                                               someone is attractive                                                   another word for pound (£)
                                                                                                   15. Fag                    (n)
                                                               6. Can’t be arsed (vb phrase)       another word for cigarette          26. Skive off               (vb)
                                                               means someone can’t get the                                             another way of saying you’re
                                                               motivation to do something.         16. Fancy             (phrase)      going to skip a day of work
                                                               For example, “I can’t be arsed      another way of saying you are       or classes. For example, “I’m
                                                               to go to that lecture today.”       attracted to someone                going to try to skive off work
                                                                                                                                       and sleep instead.”
                                                               7. Cheers             (exclam)      17. Fiver                     (n)
                                                               another way of saying ‘thank        another way of saying £5            27. Sod                      (vb)
                                                               you’. It’s also common to                                               used in different ways. For
                                                               clink glasses and say a quick       18. Peng                  (adj)     example, ‘sod off’ is used to
                                                               ‘cheers’ before having a drink      really nice. For example,           tell someone to go away and
                                                               at the pub                          “Your jacket is peng.”              ‘sod it’ is a way to say you’re
                                                                                                                                       giving up on something
                                                               8. Hyped                  (adj)     19. Gutted             (phrase)
                                                               very excited. For example,          another word for disappointed.      28. Taking the piss (phrasal vb)
                                                               “I’m hyped about the new            For example, “I’m gutted that       to make fun of something,
                                                               sports centre.”                     I didn’t get a higher mark on       usually in a sarcastic way
                                                                                                   that exam.”
                                                               9. Cock up              (n/vb)                                          29. Tenner                (n)
                                                               to make a big mess of               20. Innit?       (tag question)     another way of saying £10
                                                               something or a mistake. For         another way of asking ‘isn’t it?’
                                                               example, “I cocked up my job                                            30. Till                     (n)
                                                               interview today.”                   21. Knackered            (adj)      a pay point or check-out, where
                                                                                                   another word for exhausted          you pay for items in shops
                                                               10. Shook                 (adj)     or tired
                                                               shocked or surprised. For
                                                               example, “I was so shook            22. Lose the plot (vb phrase)
                                                               when she followed me back!”         a way of saying someone
                                                                                                   doesn’t know what is going on

  Contents                                                     Guide for International Students                                                             22       23
> Things to know before you get here

           Moving to study in another country requires a lot of
           preparation, which can be a bit overwhelming. The
           following pages provide essential information to ensure
           you are fully equipped for your arrival into the UK and
           ready to begin your creative future at UAL.

Contents   Guide for International Students                 24   25
Visas                                                Booking your plane ticket                         Airport Collection Service                        Examples of banned and restricted items: illegal
A visa provides permission to enter, or stay,        We recommend you arrive one to two weeks          UAL offers a free one-off taxi service for        drugs, offensive weapons, endangered animals,
in the UK and is given when you make a               before your course starts so you have time        students coming to the university for the first   food and plant products from outside of the EU,
successful visa application. Students from           to adjust and explore London to familiarise       time from non-European countries. You’ll be       and indecent and obscene materials.
countries outside the European Economic              yourself with your surroundings. This will        collected from any of the London airports and
Area (EEA) and Switzerland, who do not have          also give you a chance to attend UAL ‘Big         driven to either your Hall of Residence or your ‘Duty free goods’
immigration permission which permits study at        Welcome’ events organised specially for new       private accommodation. To take advantage of
UAL will require a Tier 4 General Student Visa.      students during the pre-enrolment period.         this free service, you must book at least three   Money
                                                                                                       days before your arrival date in London. Simply   You should bring some money with you to
For information on the different kinds of                ‘The Big Welcome’                             fill in the online form on the UAL website with   use during your first few weeks in the UK as
student visas and whether you need one,                                                                your arrival details.                             it takes time to set up a UK bank account.
visit the UK Visas and Immigration website,          We recommend you pay extra attention to                          the following when booking your ticket:               ‘Airport taxi service’                        It will be easier if you bring British currency so
                                                                                                                                                         be sure to shop around for the best exchange
    ‘Immigration and Visas’                          • Each airline differs in the amount of free      Packing your personal belongings                  rate. You can also exchange your money at the
                                                       baggage you are able to travel with so make     As London temperatures vary dramatically,         airport once you arrive but you’ll most likely get
Insurance                                              sure you check your baggage allowance           layered clothing will help you remain             a worse exchange rate.
It’s important that you have relevant                  before booking your ticket                      adaptable. Bring a selection of clothing to
insurance as this will save you                      • The electronic devices and electrical           cater to all seasons and pack lightly – there     If you are planning to use your debit or credit
money in case of emergencies.                          items you’re allowed to take on a flight        are numerous affordable and exciting shops        card in the UK, tell your bank for security
                                                       depend on the country and airport you’re        in the fashion capital! Most items such as        reasons. Your bank statements will show you
There are many inexpensive insurance policies          travelling to the UK from. Some airlines        bedding and cooking utensils can be bought        the currency conversion and the exchange rate
you may be able to buy which cover travel,             might also have different restrictions.         cheaply when you arrive so you shouldn’t          for each purchase but you should be aware
possessions and health. It’s recommended               Check with your airline before you travel       worry about shipping or mailing too many          you may have to pay additional charges for
that you make sure you tailor one to your              if you’re not sure about what you can           personal belongings as this may work out          using it abroad so make sure you check the
needs, especially if you are in the UK for less        take as hand luggage. This also applies to      to be more expensive.                             fees. You can also bring pre-paid cards.
than six months, as you will not be covered            things like your laptop, phone and vape
in the same way as students who are in the           • Make sure you check the airport codes            Tip Make sure to label your luggage with         Electricity
UK for longer. Medical insurance will be far           match the airport you want to land in           your UK contact details. Also make a list of      It’s easy to charge your devices and stay
cheaper than paying for emergency medical                                                              what you pack in case you need to make an         connected. Three main things to remember are:
care. Check what insurance is available in your      Airports                                          insurance claim                                   • UK appliances are fitted with a
home country for travel to the UK.                   London has five major airports: London City,                                                             three-pin plug
                                                     London Gatwick, London Heathrow, London           Banned and restricted items                       • Wall sockets have a switch controlling
If you’re studying in the UK for more than six       Luton and London Stansted. Please visit the       There are strict governmental controls                 power supply
months, you will have to pay an Immigration and      airport’s website for information on how to       on some goods and if you bring them with          • Adapters are easy to find; if your country
Health Surcharge as part of your visa application.   get to your final destination from there. There   you, you may face seizure of the good(s),              uses lower voltage than the UK average
This will entitle you to healthcare from the UK      should be plenty of choices of buses and          a fine or prosecution. You should check                of 230v, you may also need a converter
National Health Service (NHS) after registering      trains to take from the airport, and although     the government’s website to see what
with a doctor. Visits to the doctor and emergency    taxis will be available, it will be the most      you can and cannot bring into the UK as
treatment is free for those registered with the      expensive option.                                 the allowance differs from country to country.
NHS. You will be required to pay a fee for any                                                         Always watch your belongings and never
medication a doctor prescribes, or for treatment     Tip Make sure you plan your onward journey        leave your bags unattended.
for any pre-existing conditions.                     before you arrive at the airport

    Contents                                                                                           Guide for International Students                                                        26       27
> Things to do after you get here

           When you arrive in London, there are a few things you
           should do in the first two weeks.

           Open a bank account                                 health problem which requires treatments, you
           You should open a UK bank account so you            should bring prescriptions and a note from
           can manage your money more easily. We               your doctor in your home country so your new
           recommend you speak to your bank in                 doctor in London can help you as effectively as
           your home country before you come to                possible. You should also consider additional
           London - they may be able to help you open          medical insurance, as there are restrictions on
           an account in the UK.                               what treatments can be provided for existing
                                                               health problems, and the UK treatment may
           To open a bank account in the UK, you’ll need       not be the same as the treatment in your
           to visit a branch of your chosen bank and show      home country.
           them all or some of these documents:
           • Your passport and UK                              You should register with a doctor near
               immigration permission                          your new home so you can get to them
           • Proof of your address in your home                easily if you need medical attention. For
               country. Banks will accept an offer             emergencies, either call 999 and ask for
               letter from UAL as proof                        an ambulance or go to the nearest Accident
           • Proof of your UK address e.g. your                and Emergency (A&E) department in one of
               UAL accommodation contract                      the hospitals. For non-emergencies, call 111;
           • A ‘bank letter’ from UAL. You can request         they will give you professional advice and
               this from your college, but only after you      make you an appointment with your doctor
               enrol. You will need to provide us with the     or nearest Walk-in Centre. All of these will
               name and address of your chosen bank            be free of cost for you under the NHS.

            Tip As you may be without a bank account               ‘Doctors’
           for a few weeks, make sure you have another
           source of money, such as cash, or a debit/          UK visas and registering with the police
           credit card                                         Depending on the type of visa you hold, you
                                                               may have to register with the Overseas Visitors
           Register with a doctor                              Records Office (OVRO). This will be indicated
           If you’re studying at UAL for longer than           on your passport or visa documentation which
           six months, you’ll have access to the UK’s          you will need to take with you, along with
           National Health Service (NHS) so it’s essential     one passport size photograph and the £34
           to register yourself with a doctor (also known      registration fee.
           as General Practitioner or GP). The NHS will
           also cover you for emergencies, some dental             ‘How to register’
           care and eye tests but only after you are
           registered with a doctor. If you have a recurring

Contents   Guide for International Students                                                        28       29
> Things to know about living in London

           It’s easier to think of London as lots of tiny towns rather
           than one big city. Every area in London has a different
           ambience, atmosphere and local ‘tribe’ and before long,
           you will have your favourites. London can be both an
           exciting yet challenging experience. This section will give
           you an idea of what it’s like to live here, along with some
           useful tips about daily life, to help you make this diverse
           and vibrant city your home.

Contents   Guide for International Students                    30   31
Accommodation                                      • Unlike living in Halls, you will have to pay      Tip It’s a good idea to insure your belongings,   Staying safe
Most new students choose to live in a student        other bills in addition to the rent, such as     especially if you have expensive electronic        London is generally a safe city to live in, but like
Hall of Residence, as it’s bookable through          water, gas, electricity and internet. You’ll     equipment such as laptops and phones. If           any new place, you should take time to learn
UAL’s Accommodation Services and includes            also have to pay for a TV licence if you         you’re living in Halls, your belongings are        how to look after yourself and your belongings.
utilities (gas, electricity, water) in the cost.     choose to view programmes on your                insured (check restrictions when you arrive).      Here are some top tips:
Living in Halls also allows you to meet other        television or laptop so make sure you            If you’re renting privately, you should get
students and make friends and we have a wide         factor in all these extras when budgeting        private contents insurance in case your            • Keep your purse or wallet close to your
range of sites located near to each college.       • Rental prices vary widely with costs ranging     belongings are lost or stolen                        body and don’t carry too much cash
                                                     anywhere from £150 per week to £500 plus                                                            • Keep all valuables out of sight when out and
    ‘Accommodation’                                  per week. Most properties are listed with                                                             about, especially when in crowded places
                                                     the weekly charge although you may pay                                                              • Carry your laptop in a rucksack rather than
If you prefer to live in private accommodation,      your rent monthly so make sure you ask           Council Tax                                          a laptop bag so it’s not easily seen
we recommend you contact Accommodation             • It’s not advisable to rent a property without    Full time students on most courses are             • Register your pocket electronics (phone,
Services for advice and help to find a rental        viewing it in person as photographs can          exempt from paying ‘Council Tax’, which is           iPad, iPod) for free on so if
property in London.                                  be deceptive                                     a fee residents pay to the local government          they get stolen and police have to search for
                                                                                                      for waste collection, recycling and general          them, they can check the serial number and                        Tip Laundry services are available in Halls.      maintenance. If you’re renting privately, you’ll     track you as the owner
                                                   If you’re renting privately, make sure you have    need a certificate to prove you are exempt         • Plan your route before you leave; the
    UK office: +44 (0)20 7514 6240
                                                   access to a washing machine or check where         by requesting a Council Tax Exemption                Transport for London website is
    (9am – 5pm Monday – Friday)
                                                   the nearest laundry facilities are                 Certificate after you enrol on your main course.     a good place to start
     Asia office +852 2155 4207
                                                                                                                                                         • Avoid walking alone at night; keep to
   ‘Private accommodation’                         There are rules on renting in the UK which may         ‘Council Tax’                                    well-lit main roads or take a taxi for
                                                   be different from what you are used to in your                                                          longer distances; only use registered
                                                   home country. Wherever you choose to live                                                               taxis or minicabs
If you choose to rent private accommodation
                                                   during your studies, remember:                                                                        • Report any incidents, suspicious activity
directly from an individual or an agency, there
                                                                                                                                                           or stolen belongings to the police; dial 101
are a few things you should keep in mind:
                                                   • You should have a written contract, in                                                                for your nearest police service or 999 in
                                                     English, for your accommodation. A                                                                    an emergency
• Living in or near the centre of London is
                                                     contract is the agreement between you                                                               • Go to an Accident and Emergency (A&E)
  very expensive and most students live a
                                                     and your accommodation provider which                                                                 department at your nearest hospital if you
  little further away as it’s more affordable
                                                     you both have to sign                                                                                 have a serious injury or illness
  with better quality accommodation. This
                                                   • The contract will cover the amount of the                                                           • Students are sometimes targeted by
  may mean it will take time for you to get to
                                                     rent, frequency and method of payment                                                                 scammers trying to access personal
  your college so factor in travel time when
                                                     of the rent, the bills you are responsible                                                            information or bank details. Read our
  searching. For example, the average journey
                                                     for, the length of the tenancy, notice period,                                                        Commonplace article ‘Keep safe - tips for
  time for someone living in South London
                                                     as well as other important points                                                                     avoiding student scams’.
  commuting to work/school/university in
                                                   • You must read and understand the contract
  central London, by public transport or car
                                                     before you accept it and make an initial
  could take between 40-60 minutes.
                                                     payment. UAL have a dedicated Private
                                                     Accommodation Advisor who can check
                                                     the contract and explain it to you

                                              ‘Private renting tenancy agreements’

    Contents                                                                                          Guide for International Students                                                           32        33
Keeping in touch

           Mobile/Cell phones                               Internet/ Broadband
           Getting a UK mobile phone is the best way to     In addition to having internet on your new
           keep in touch with your new friends in the UK.   mobile phone plan, you can access free
           You have several options to choose from:         Wi-Fi at all UAL sites, including UAL Halls
                                                            of Residence.
           • Pay Monthly: you’ll need to sign a
             contract for a fixed length of time,           If you are renting privately, there is a wide
             usually for 12 to 24 months                    selection of home broadband companies and
           • Pay as You Go: you’ll just need to top         packages to choose from but budget wisely,
             up / buy credit as and when you need it        as this may mean you will have to pay a rental
           • SIM-only: similar to Pay Monthly but you’ll    fee for a land line phone.
             only be committed to a rolling 30 days
             contract and won’t get a mobile device          Tip Use price comparison websites
                                                            to see offers from different companies
           There are lots of different phone providers in
           the UK so it’s important to shop around when     Postal Service
           you are deciding on the best option for you.     Post Offices are located all over London and
                                                            Royal Mail is the main distributor. If you are
           International calls                              posting a letter or package containing valuable
           Calling international numbers from the UK can    items or it needs to get to its destination
           be expensive, especially if you decide to use    quickly, there are different services available
           your mobile. Some alternative ways to stay in    and you should talk to someone at the Post
           touch with your family and friends back home     Office about the best options for you. Some of
           include using Skype, WeChat, Facebook            the services won’t be available for international
           Messenger or WhatsApp to make calls and          destinations. We would recommend you
           send messages or including an international      compare costs from other providers such
           calling plan when you get a UK mobile. You       as Parcel Force if you’re sending a package
           can also buy international calling cards from    abroad as costs may vary depending on
           most local shops and many have a free phone      destination, size and weight of the package.
           number you can access to place a call; if your
           mobile phone plan charges for calling free
           phone numbers, use a land line or the public
           telephones located around London.

Contents   Guide for International Students                                                       34       35
> Arts Students’ Union guide to exploring London

           Once you’ve settled in and know the essentials, it’s
           time to get to know your new city! There’s so much
           to London and always something new to explore.

           Look back at this section whenever you’re stuck for
           somewhere to go or something to do.

Contents   Guide for International Students                   36   37
Museums and Galleries                               Students’ union recommends:   Taking time out                                   Meeting new people
Most of London’s museums are free to                                              It’s easy to be caught up in the wonderful        Despite the size and population of London,
enter. From the Victoria & Albert Museum            ​Art and design               mayhem of London as it’s a busy place. Make       it can be difficult to meet people. Being a
to the Science Museum, you’ll find yourself         Tate Modern                   the most of what the city has to offer so you     student will make this easier through classes
submerged in art, history, culture and              Tate Britain                  can explore and relax.                            and group projects, as well as through
innovation from ancient history all the way to      Royal Academy of Arts (RA)                                                      student accommodation, should you choose
the 21st century. Learn about developments          Saatchi Gallery               • Hidden walks: if you’re getting tired of the    to live there.
in contemporary science, medicine and               Whitechapel Gallery             crowds in popular areas such as Hyde
technology and then fall in love with surrealist,   Photographers’ Gallery​         Park, there are lots of places you can          There are also many events and activities
minimalist and abstract artworks.                   The ​Design Museum​             explore at your own pace. Follow Regent’s       where you can meet people, organised
                                                                                    Park’s beautiful twisting canal or discover     by Arts SU and UAL Social. Events and
There are also plenty of galleries around           Museums                         London’s history via Thames walk paths          activities vary from quiz nights, film nights,
London, from the Serpentine Gallery to the          Museum of London Docklands​   • The great outdoors: visit Hampstead Heath       trips to famous landmarks or the theatre and
Photographers’ Gallery where workshops              ​Imperial War Museum​           Park, Richmond Park and Primrose Hill for       various workshops and masterclasses.
and talks are organised.                             Museum of London​              unique views of London, for free
                                                     The ​National Gallery        • Sip and see: bird watch at the Waterside  
‘Late’ events                                        Victoria and Albert (V&A)      café located on a canal boat or read a book         ‘UAL Social’ & ‘UAL Arts SU’
Larger museums, such as the British                  Museums of Brands              in the Poetry Café during the day and stay
Museum and The Royal Academy of Arts,                                               for the free performances in the evening.
host events called ‘Lates’. Taking place in                                         There’s also a lot to see and do at Kew         UAL Social & Arts SU
the evenings, exhibitions come to life through                                      Gardens as well as lots of cafes with great     If you prefer sports and related activities,
performances and art installations. It’s an                                         views of the famous garden                      Arts SU runs a wide range of great sports and
extravagant part of London’s art scene, and                                                                                         activities as well as health and nutrition talks
best of all, our Arts SU often gets involved                                      Getting active                                    and exciting one off events. There are over 25
with them – so look out for events.                                               London is a great place to stay fit and active,   sports clubs which you can join, ranging from
                                                                                  offering a wide variety of activities.            football, volleyball, ballet and badminton to ‘Creative events’                                                                                                   yoga, Zumba, Pilates and much more.
                                                                                  • Parkrun: a great way of finding people
                                                                                    to run with. All you need to do is find the         ‘Arts Active’
                                                                                    closest event to you on
                                                                                  • Our Parks: offers free group exercise
                                                                                    in parks across London. Experienced
                                                                                    instructors lead activities ranging from
                                                                                    Tai Chi and yoga to Brazilian dance and
                                                                                    high-intensity full body workout. Book
                                                                                    your free place through
                                                                                  • Meditation: to relax, unwind and recharge
                                                                                    your batteries, join free meditation sessions
                                                                                    offered by

    Contents                                                                      Guide for International Students                                                        38         39
Multi-cultural city

                                                              Chinatown                                            Golders Green
London may be the capital city of England, but it’s also      Packed full of Chinese supermarkets, bakeries,       Mainly a Jewish community, the area also
one of the most multicultural cities in the world. As a       and over 80 different Chinese restaurants.           features a mix of various cultures like
                                                              Be sure to head to Chinatown to celebrate            Japanese, Turkish, Korean and Italian. The
matter of fact, one-third of all Londoners were born          Chinese New Year.                                    neighbourhood is home to countless Kosher
outside of the UK, and over 200 languages are spoken                                                               cafes and Jewish book stores, and the former
                                                              Camden                                               home of ballerina Anna Pavlova has been
throughout many of London’s streets and neighbourhoods.       Although known for contemporary art,                 turned into a Jewish Cultural Centre which
                                                              it also has lots of Latin culture which              you can visit.
                                                              deserves to be explored.
If you want to experience some of the many cultures                                                                Tooting, Southall and Aldgate
present, here are some neighborhoods to visit - you’ll find   Brixton                                              Nicknamed “Little India” and “Curry Corridor”,
                                                              Declared the unofficial capital of the British       these areas thrive with Indian and Asian
it hard to believe that you’re walking around London:         African-Caribbean community as over                  culture. With shops packed full of imported
                                                              24 percent of its population is of African or        items from traditional clothing to spices, you
                                                              Caribbean descent. There are lots of Caribbean       can also find food from nearly every country
                                                              restaurants and reggae music shops, and it           in South Asia.
                                                              also hosts an annual celebration for Jamaican
                                                              Independence Day.                                    New Malden
                                                                                                                   Known as “Little Korea,” it has one of the most
                                                              Waltham Forest                                       densely populated areas of Koreans outside
                                                              Waltham Forest has one of the diverse ethnic         of South Korea. The area boasts over 20
                                                              populations in the UK (mostly consisting of          different Korean restaurants and cafes as well
                                                              Eastern Europeans and British Pakistanis).           as Korean-language churches and nursery
                                                              You’ll find a variety of architecture, restaurants   schools. The area also hosts the Korean Food
                                                              and shops influenced by Scandinavian,                Festival every year, and you won’t have to look
                                                              Portuguese, Italian and Spanish culture.             very far to find a Korean-style karaoke bar.

  Contents                                                    Guide for International Students                                                         40       41
> Food and Drink

                The diversity of cultures and their cuisines provides
                something for everyone in London, whether you are
                looking to match dietary needs such as kosher, halal,
                vegan and vegetarian or simply want to satisfy a craving.

                Why not visit China Town or simply search online and
                you’ll find what you’re looking for! Otherwise visit ‘Multi-
                cultural city’ (page 40) for more options.

42   Contents   Guide for International Students                      42   43
Traditional British food                              You might see signs in shops reading “Under         Eating in                                           Tip You will notice lots of pre-packaged and
There are so many tasty British culinary              25?”. You don’t need to be 25 to buy alcohol        Although all manner of food is available within    pre-made food at the supermarket; it may be
delights that are enjoyed and eaten quite             in the UK (the legal drinking age is 18); all it    a variety of price ranges in restaurants and       tempting as it’s quick and easy but it’s rarely
regularly all across the UK. Be sure to take          means is that if you look under 25, you will be     the UAL canteens, we recommend that you            a healthier or the most affordable option
some time to try out one of two or even all           asked for ID. ID stands for ‘identification’, and   shop for, and prepare, your own meals. This
of the foods here:                                    in this case refers to an official document with    is a healthier option and will better suit a       Online shopping
                                                      a photo of you and your date of birth on it,        student budget.                                    Most of the supermarkets have the option
• Sunday Roast: traditionally eaten and               such as passport or driving licence.                                                                   for you to shop and pay online and get the
  served in pubs all over the country at                                                                  The most affordable way to prepare food            shopping delivered to your home for a fee.
  Sunday lunchtime. It involves roast meat,           Some pubs, bars and clubs ask for ID from           is setting a budget first and creating meal
  roast potatoes, at least two different kinds        everyone wishing to enter, regardless of age.       plans before buying the ingredients. You’ll be      Tip If the supermarket doesn’t have the exact
  of vegetables, gravy and Yorkshire puddings         If you don’t have ID, you may be turned away.       surprised how many different foods you can         item you ordered, they will deliver the nearest
  (which, confusingly, are not sweet!)                                                                    create with the same ingredients and there         matching item
• Fish and chips: battered cod and chips              Eating and drinking out                             are lots of websites to help you plan meals
  with salt and vinegar. It’s the classic English     Eating and drinking out might seem like a           on a budget.                                       International food
  take-away food, and the traditional national        simple thing, but if you are unfamiliar with UK                                                        If you are looking to re-create your
  food of England. The best fish and chips            customs, you may be in for a few surprises!             Google ‘Eating on a student budget’            favourite food from your home country the
  are found near the coast, so maybe take             Here are some common things to know:                                                                   supermarkets may have the ingredients
  a trip to Brighton!                                                                                     Supermarkets                                       you need, although there may not be a lot
• Full English breakfast: a very English              • If you order water, you may be served             Supermarkets are located throughout the            of choices. Don’t despair though, being a
  meal involving any combination of toast,              bottled water that you’ll have to pay for.        city where you can buy groceries and other         multicultural city you’ll surely find what you
  sausages, fried mushrooms, eggs, baked                Ask for tap water, which is free and safe         essentials. The ones located in the centre of      need, and more, from these neighbourhoods:
  beans and bacon. Most people don’t have it            to drink in the UK                                London tend to be smaller with fewer options
  every day, but might indulge at the weekend!        • Many restaurants add a service tip to the         of food and price ranges. We recommend you         • South Asian: Harrow, Southall,
  You can try it yourself in almost any café            final bill (look out for “service included”       visit larger supermarkets outside of central         Wembley, Aldgate
• Curry: Curry is one of the UK’s most                  on your receipt), so there is no need to tip      London which will give you the opportunity to      • Southeast Asian: Chinatown
  popular dishes. Chicken Tikka Masala was              extra unless you want to                          check out special offers and discounted items      • Portuguese: Stockwell and Oval
  invented for the British!                           • In most pubs you have to go to the bar            as well as see the different ranges of price for   • Polish supermarkets​: Shepherd’s Bush
                                                        to order your food and drinks                     the same item.                                     • African-Caribbean: Lambeth and Lewisham
Pubs and alcohol                                      • It’s polite to ‘buy rounds’ (take turns to                                                           • Middle Eastern: Edgware Road
In England, visiting pubs is a common way to            buy drinks) with your group of friends            The main affordable supermarkets are:              • South America: Elephant & Castle
relax, celebrate or simply meet up with friends.      • About 10 minutes before closing time, the         • Lidl                                             • Vietnamese: Hackney
All pubs will have a bar serving alcoholic and          bar staff will ring a bell and tell people to     • Aldi
non-alcoholic drinks. Many serve food as well           order their last drinks. The pub isn’t allowed    • Asda                                              Tip If you can’t find what you’re looking for,
as put on events, such as the traditional pub           to serve drinks after closing time and you        • Tesco                                            simply google it
quiz. It’s absolutely fine to go along if you don’t     must finish your drink and leave 20 minutes       • Sainsbury’s
drink alcohol.                                          after the bell has been rung. Closing times       • Morrisons
                                                        vary in different pubs
“Off licences” are small shops which have                                                                  Tip When visiting the supermarket, it is always
a licence to sell alcohol for consumption off                                                             worth checking to see the difference between
the premises.                                                                                             famous brands and the supermarket’s own
                                                                                                          brand – sometimes it’s the same thing and will
                                                                                                          save you a lot of money

    Contents                                                                                              Guide for International Students                                                         44          45
> Shopping

              London has thousands of shops catering to all styles
              and tastes. Some of London’s main shopping areas are
              around Oxford Street, Kensington and Chelsea, Covent
              Garden and Angel.

              You’ll also find one the UK’s biggest shopping centres
              Westfield in Stratford (with a smaller version in White
              City) as well as other local shopping centres wherever
              you settle in London.

46 Contents   Guide for International Students                   46     47
A typical shopping area will have:                 Markets & Fairs ​                                 Money saving tips
                                                   London has many wonderful markets where           There are lots of ways to save a little extra
• ‘High Street’ shops: chain stores found all      you can buy almost anything from food to          money during your time in London.
  over London that carry the latest fashions       flowers and modern art to clothing.
  (such as Zara, Topshop and H&M). Primark                                                           • NUS card: you can buy a card from
  is one where you’re sure to find bargains as     • Notting Hill, Portobello Road and Camden          National Union of Students (NUS) which
  it’s much more affordable                          Lock; sell a variety of goods including           will save you money from over 200 places,
• Department stores: a large place that              antiques, food, clothes, music and art            including fashion, electronics and food
  has separate areas in which different kinds      • Brick Lane; known for vintage clothing            retailers, as well as entertainment and
  of products are sold (such as make-up,             but also sells antiques, arts and food            travel. Remember, shops don’t always
  fashion, furniture and household goods).         • Old Spitalfields; known for fashion but           advertise the discount, so always ask if
  The main ones in London are Debenhams,             also sells antiques and food                      they take NUS card!
  John Lewis, Selfridges, Harrods and              • Borough market; London’s most renowned
  House of Fraser; prices ranging from               food and drink market with a variety of    ‘NUS extra’
  affordable to high                                 British and Internationally grown items
• Home stores: sell essential items you’ll                                                           • Local discount scheme: as a student, you
  need for your home; from towels and              There are also some great themed fairs you          might be able to get discounts depending
  blankets to frying pans and furniture.           might enjoy; from the famous London Book            on the area you chose to live in. Discounts
  The most popular one is Argos (also              Fair and London Art Fair, to London Car Fair        are offered by the Borough Council (which
  sells electronics for your home) and Ikea        and the VegFest.                                    looks after the area you live in) and can
  (mainly located in the outskirts of London)                                                          be used for local sport centres/gyms,
• Electronic stores: sell a variety of home         Tip Check the opening times and the exact          restaurants and events. Search your
  electronics (such as laptops, gaming             location of the market and fair you’re planning     council’s website to see what discounts
  consoles and phones) and household               to visit                                            they offer to residents
  appliances (such as fridges, kettles and                                                           • Online discounts: websites such as
  hoovers). Main ones you’ll see are Currys,       Refunds and returns                                 VoucherCloud and Groupon have lots of
  Carphone Warehouse, PC World and Argos           If you change your mind about something you         offers and are great for treating yourself to
• Health and beauty stores: sell a range of        bought, you can return the item in the original     anything from a massage to a meal
  products for personal care such as make-         condition to the store and they’ll either:        • Buy a reusable cup and get discounts in
  up, shampoos and medicines. Superdrug                                                                many coffee shops (as well as being more
  and Boots are the most affordable                • give back the money you paid (refund)             sustainable!).
• Stationery shops: sell essential items you       • allow you to exchange the item for another
  may need for your studies, ranging from          • give you store credit which you can use to
  pens to notebooks and books. Popular               buy something at a later date
  ones are WHSmith and Ryman
                                                   Every store has different rules for returning
 Tip If buying furniture, you may come across      items, especially when the item has been
words like ‘ready to assemble’ or ‘flat packed’.   discounted, so make sure you check before
This means you’ll have to put the furniture        you buy.
together yourself by following the instructions
the item comes with

    Contents                                                                                         Guide for International Students                  48   49
You can also read