WHETHER YOU ARE COMING FROM OVERSEAS OR WANT TO KNOW ABOUT WHETHER YOU CAN BRING YOUR FAVOURITE CHAIR, WE HAVE THE ANSWERs BELOW, AND IF WE DON'T, THEN DON'T HESITATE TO CALL OR EMAIL US AND WE'D BE HAPPY TO HELP
So you're coming from overseas...
Entering the phase of college life while leaving home can be scary and even more so when you are studying in another country. We at ELS recognise this and aim to help all of our International tenants integrate into the wonderful student culture that is Edinburgh.
To help you find your feet, we have lots of great information on this website. We know that the big move can be daunting so we've tried to give as many links and info as possible to ease the transition for you. Tasks like starting a new bank account, getting a bus pass, finding food that tastes like a home cooked meal, finding your favourite haunt, the list goes on and on. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a trusted friend to ask? Find all that and more here, otherwise we're always happy to help.
We at ELS provide the most comprehensive orientation for our students, opening them to all the experiences that Edinburgh has to offer and assuring those at home that their loved ones are in safe hands.
It is not possible to open a UK bank account until you arrive in the UK. However, it is likely to be one of the first things that you do because this is the safest way to keep your money. This will take you at least a week so you must make sure you have enough money for your first few weeks in your new city.
To open a bank account you will need to check individual bank requirements, but most require you to take your passport and introductory documentation from your university detailing your personal details and course of study.
Speak to your university student union for more details or go to www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk for advice on budgeting and managing your money or the British Bankers Association for their guide for international students https://www.bba.org.uk/publications/entry/international-students/leaflets/
Opening a bank account...
Student Travel Reduction Cards...
If you are exploring the UK while you’re here you will make considerable savings on travel by purchasing a Young Person’s Railcard and/or a Coach Card. The Young Person’s Coach Card can be bought at National Express coach offices or online. This card costs £10 for a year or £25 for three years and gives you 30% off all coach travel in the UK. To get one you simply need proof that you are a student. For further information see www.nationalexpress.com
A Young Person’s Railcard costs £30 for one year or £70 for three years, and gives you a third off your rail travel in the UK. To get this you will need proof you are a student, your passport and a passport-size photo. The card can be purchased at any train station ticket office. For further information see www.16-25railcard.co.uk
Getting a mobile phone...
Mobile phones are cheap to buy, but expensive to use, especially if you are calling another country. If you choose a contract the phone will be cheaper or free but make sure you check the monthly payment and call charges before signing any contract and there is often a compulsory monthly charge. You will also need an enrolment letter from your university.
Pay-as-you-go is the no-contract, no credit check, no-commitment, no-monthly bills option. However, you always pay a lot more to buy the initial phone and calls are generally more expensive than on contract mobile phones, but you will not need to provide a proof of enrolment letter from your university.
There will be deals for international calls so make sure you take a look around before rushing into buying a phone.
You may need to apply for a student visa to enter the UK.
The University of Edinburgh has a great guide for students needing a visa. You can read it here.