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Preparing to Leave Home

We understand that there is so much to organise before you leave for the UK. These are our top tips to help you get ready.

Apply for your Visa

It is essential that you apply for your visa well in advance of travelling to the UK. This will most likely be a Student visa to study in the UK, if you do not have other permission in place.

Book your Accommodation

We recommend you book your accommodation before you arrive in the UK. This means that when you get here, you don’t have to worry about finding somewhere in a hurry.

Book your Flight & Airport Transfers

Once you have received your visa, the next step is to book your flights to the UK. Make sure you check what day Orientation starts to make sure you don’t miss out on any of the great welcome activities organised by UPIC’s student support team. You will also need to arrange for an airport pickup or transport to Plymouth. Contact us if you need help with this.

What to Pack

Here is a quick look at what to bring and what needs to stay behind when you pack.

  • Money in cash/bank draft/bank cheque format. Make sure to have enough British Pounds (£) for the first few weeks until you are able to open a local bank account.
  • UK power adaptors
  • Clothing: UK weather is unpredictable, so pack a good mix of summer and winter clothing
  • You may wish to bring something that has sentimental value for you, e.g. a picture of your family
  • Cooking spices in small quantities
  • Bedding, if it isn’t provided
  • Some basic toiletries to have with you on arrival
  • Laptop/computer
  • Medication for personal use (large quantities must have doctor’s letter)

What not to Pack

  • Liquids (over 100ml) in your hand luggage
  • Cooking equipment
  • Food items such as grains, rice, pickles and fruit
  • Frozen or cooked food

UK Seasons

Being located on the south coast of England, we enjoy a mild and sunny microclimate compared to the rest of the UK.

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Important Documents

  • A valid passport and student visa
  • At least four passport-sized photographs (these are often required for various cards, such as student railcards, and for police registration). They must be standard UK passport size, with white or pale background, and include your whole head and shoulders. Photographs can be obtained in the UK but may be more expensive than in your home country.
  • Your Unconditional Offer of Admission
  • Your CAS Statement
  • Your Acceptance of Admission Form (completed)
  • Certified originals of your academic transcripts (including evidence of English proficiency)
  • Personal identification (e.g. driver's licence, birth certificate, etc.)
  • Any medical prescriptions/certificates/history/reports
  • Full details and evidence of your accommodation in the UK
  • Evidence of funds: a letter confirming personal or family resources, or confirmation of your sponsorship
  • Proof of address in your home country
  • Contact numbers for any family/friends in the UK
  • Contact details of family/friends in the event of an emergency
  • If you are under 18, your guardian's details. The guardian must be resident in the UK and appointed by your parent.

Before You Arrive in the UK

Please ensure you have the UPIC Emergency phone number (+44 (0) 1752 411 114) with you when you travel and the student services email address:

If you do not have a working mobile in the UK when you arrive, you will find public telephones at all airports. Instructions on how to use them are displayed next to the telephone. Most accept coins from 20p upwards, and many phone boxes also accept credit cards or phone cards (these can be purchased from most convenience stores and newsagents, and come in many values from £2 to £20).

Useful Websites

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