August 20, 2018, by Shweta

What to expect when you’re expecting….to come to Nottingham

The coming fall will mark 2 years since I made the 4000-mile trek to the University of Nottingham. With the start of a new academic year looming, I have decided to use my blog to advise incoming international students on what to expect upon arrival and how to transition to life in Nottingham as easily and smoothly as possible.

Whether you’re a newbie or a veteran to life away from home, moving to university can be a daunting challenge. Here are a few things to remember as you experience one of the greatest transitions of your life.

Prior to your arrival, ensure that all the documents you require at immigration are ready. Keep the originals on hand but also ensure that you have copies of every document. It never hurts to be “over-prepared” in such situations. Your CAS letter, accommodation letter and student visa are some of the important documents you will need. Also, remember to pack light and smart. It’s tempting to attempt to pack up your whole childhood bedroom into a suitcase but don’t forget that dorm rooms are often quite small. Additionally, it will probably be a lot easier to buy certain items from the city center than cart it internationally. Packing some warm clothes, food items, and memorabilia will be enough to make your new home comfortable and practical. I would also recommend planning your journey in advance. Since Nottingham does not have an international airport, most students choose to fly in via London or Birmingham. I personally prefer the latter as it is closer to Nottingham and relatively less crowded. Book tickets for the connecting train or coach as early as you can to save money and ensure a seat, as these journeys can get full quite fast. Lastly, make a check-list of all the things that need doing upon arrival as this will keep you organised amidst the rush of welcome week.

Upon arrival, take time out to settle into your dorm and make it homely before you explore the rest of the city. I would highly recommend attending the welcome program that’s specifically designed for international students. Here, student ambassadors and welcome week helpers will guide you in some of the more boring – but very important – tasks on your check-list, such as opening a bank account and buying a sim card. If you need to buy additional things for your room and/or kitchen, consider going on the planned trips to Ikea, which are usually a part of the welcome program. You can also visit Victoria Centre on your own initiative, if you wish to do so. I would also suggest that you register with the Cripps Health Centre as soon as possible. If you have seen the rush of ‘incoming university student’ memes that have been taking over the internet recently, you will know that ‘Fresher’s Flu’ is everyone’s worst nightmare. Being registered with the GP service will be useful in case you do need help upon falling sick. Finally, take some time out of your busy schedule to meet your neighbours and hall-mates. The people you meet in Fresher’s week may not always become your best mates but it is always helpful to have a few friendly faces around.

That’s all for this post. As I’ve said time and time again, moving to university is one of the biggest adventures you will ever embark on. It just wouldn’t be fair if I were to give away all the trade secrets. To all our incoming students, I wish you good luck and I hope that you fall in love with Nottingham as much as I have.

Stay tuned for more information about moving to university!




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