Before you leave for Scotland it is important that you get organised and prepare everything you need to allow you to enter the UK, start your course, and live in Scotland. To get you started we have prepared a pre-arrival checklist with some of the things you will need to do before you leave.
1. Prioritise your passport & visa (obviously)
If you're coming to Scotland from outside the UK, make sure you have a valid passport and that the expiry date does not exceed the date that you intend to stay in the UK.
You may also require a visa to study in Scotland and you will need to ensure you have this in advance and make sure you understand the relevant terms and conditions.
2. Ensure you're insured
You might need travel or medical insurance while you are in the UK, so make sure you check this out. It's important to make arrangements to obtain this before you leave your home country.
3. Dont forget those documents
Collect important personal documents together and put them in a safe place in your luggage. Make copies to take in your check-in luggage. It is also a good idea to store copies digitally as well. Please remember to bring your passport with you. Other documents you may want to consider bringing (if applicable) are:
- Birth certificate
- Letter of offer, CAS or Student Visitor letter
- Transcripts or certificates from previous studies
- Financial evidence (such as bank statements or a letter from your bank)
- A letter from your funding sponsor
- A letter from your accommodation manager
4. Arrange that accommodation
Book your travel to Scotland and check you have your travel documents including ticket or boarding passes and copies of your insurance documents.
If you've planned on searching for accommodation after you arrive in Scotland it is recommended that you make arrangements for your first couple of nights before leaving your home country.
5. Post-flight planning
Landing in a new country for the first time can be a little daunting, so it's important to have a good idea of where you need to go once you land. If you've travelled from overseas, make sure you have planned your trip from the airport to your university or accommodation.
For more information about university airport welcomes, please check with your university.
6. Put the 'fun' in funding
Whether it is tuition fees or funding, its important to make sure that all the financial aspects of your studying are taken care of to avoid any unneccesary or unwanted surprises.
7. Stay healthy
If you take any kind of medication, it is important to make sure you have a supply of any necessary prescription medication and check if you need a licence to bring any medication in to the UK.
Alongside this, make sure you also arrange to have necessary vaccinations before leaving home.
8. Call me!
Make sure you keep the contact details of your university handy in case you need to get in contact with them for any reason. It might also be worth keeping a note of other important contacts such as family and friends and your embassy in the UK.
9. Money, money, money
Make sure you have enough UK Pounds Sterling to pay for any travel, food or accommodation you might need when you first arrive in the UK.
You may also want to open up a bank account. If possible you can do this before you leave, otherwise you can make an appointment with a local bank branch when you arrive.
10. Have fun!
Whether it is pre-semester events or the various social and sports clubs, extra curricular activivites are a massive part of student life in Scotland. With that in mind, make sure you check your university website for information about orientation programmes and activities.