When in the UK, and you are in any kind of emergency situation, just dial 999 for the ambulance, fire brigade or police. This is a free call from any phone, even from mobiles without credit. Make sure you get a copy of your Gas Safety Record from your landlord on moving in to prove that your appliances are safe and have been checked recently.
Although utility bills are added in the halls of residence or university accommodation rent, make sure you check this out. On moving into a new property, ask for a meter reading from the landlord or estate agent. With this meter reading, you can work out how much gas, water and electricity you use for its correct billing.
You will also have to register with the electric, water and gas company to get all bills in your name. This makes sure that there is no confusion on who receives the bills and who pays them.
Find out if you have to pay Council Tax, which is tax for local services like rubbish collection, police and fire brigade. This tax is generally based on the value of the type of accommodation you live in.
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Before moving, you have to be ready for the changeable climate of the UK, as it may be quite different to the climate you are used to. The average temperature in the UK is about 5 degrees C in winter and 16 degrees C in summer. So make sure you have some warm clothing like jackets, coats and thermal underwear for the winter if you are not used to the cold. It is also advised to get used to layering clothes throughout the year in the UK. Have an umbrella or waterproof jacket handy at all times.
Academic year in UK
Most higher education courses in the UK start their academic year in September. However, it may be earlier or later than this, depending on the institution. As soon as you have been accepted for a course, make sure you find out exactly when your course starts so that you can plan your move efficiently. Find out all the celebrations, public holidays and bank holidays before moving to UK as most universities and businesses remain closed on these days.
Tips for students travelling to the UK
Here are some helpful tips for students travelling to the UK that proves to be very helpful. Most of the shops and grocery stores throughout the UK, except for London and except for large supermarkets, close at 6 pm. This is why it is important you get your shopping done well in advance, and to have some basic medication like anti-diarrhoea, cold, cough and body ache medication ready at all times.
Be ready to suffer from the ‘fresher’s flu’ that every student suffers from somewhere in September. This flu is attributed to the sudden temperature and climate change that international students go through.
It is better to finish off any pending orthodontic or dental work before leaving for the UK as NHS insurance does not cover this. In case of an emergency, you can head to the dental college for free treatment but have to wait for 4-5 hours in the waiting room.
Any shopping you want to do for friends and family at home should be done at Christmas as there are many pre-Christmas bargains to be had.
However while buying goods to take home, keep the weight allowance in mind as there are fines for excess luggage. If you can’t avoid buying things, you could send your luggage through international delivery services as the rates are rather reasonable. And before flying off to UK, it is suggested to take some instant food packets along to fill your stomach until you overcome jet lag and buy groceries for food.