What to expect when you arrive in the UK (and York)

Our international students explain what to expect when you arrive in the UK (and York) to start your university journey.

Mi Chelle, 1st Year English student, Malaysia

What to expect when you arrive in the UK (and York)
Mi Chelle, 1st Year English student, Malaysia
  • Weather: Be alert with regards to the weather – have an umbrella or raincoat with you at all times in case it rains for instance.
  • Allow time to settle in: The time to settle in – you won’t be able to settle in completely the moment you set foot into the UK so do allow yourself time to familiarise yourself with your surroundings and to get used to your new environment.

Yara, 3rd Year Law student, Jordan

What to expect when you arrive in the UK (and York)
Yara, 3rd Year Law student, Jordan
  • Arriving in London: If you arrive in London before you go into York, expect people to be very busy and not very friendly! But remember that is only because London is a HUGE city and everyone is working all the time – it’s the complete opposite in York!
  • Punctual: Expect people to be very punctual! If you have trains booked, or if you need to get the bus or if you’re going for a tutor meeting – always be early! It guarantees your seat and it’s more impressive!
  • Expect unpredictable weather!: It could be sunny during the morning and then turn into a rainstorm in the evening – make sure you have an umbrella wherever you go!
  • Friendly people: As for York, expect people to be very friendly and to approach you and talk to you – especially when they find out that you’re international! I’ve found that people want to learn more about my heritage and my culture when they meet me – so just be friendly and strike up conversations with people if you feel comfortable doing so. Conversely, don’t feel like you have to be friendly, but expect people to approach you and talk to you!

Yuqiao, 3rd Year Politics with International Relations student, China

What to expect when you arrive in the UK (and York)
Yuqiao, 3rd Year Politics with International Relations student, China

Accents: One thing to expect when you first get off the plane is that everyone here speaks English but most people speak with different accents.

It might be a little bit hard to understand in the first place but you’ll get used to this within a couple of weeks and might even catch a British accent in the end.

Saranporn, MA Applied Linguistics in English Language Teaching, Thailand

What to expect when you arrive in the UK (and York)
Saranporn, MA Applied Linguistics in English Language Teaching, Thailand
  • Be prepared for rains and winds: The weather could be different throughout the day. Since the weather here is very different from my hometown, I struggled a little at first. Then, I often check the weather forecast and prepare myself each day.
  • Student-friendly city: The city is very student-friendly. You can simply walk to different places since it is not very big. One of my favourite places is the university library. It opens 24 hours a day. There are different study areas and facilities.

Dilys, LLM International Corporate and Commercial Law, Ghana

What to expect when you arrive in the UK (and York)
Dilys, LLM International Corporate and Commercial Law, Ghana
  • The weather: Ha-ha! The English weather may not be as bright all the time. The clouds may be just foggy and a bit cold. Just in case you are uncertain as to your current location, just look up and know you are in the right place.
  • The historic buildings: It is very easy to tell out historic buildings because though it has been renovated to the taste of modern century, culture has also been preserved in terms of colour, design, names etc.
  • Easy -going people: They are everywhere! Do not be afraid to get missing or ask for help or make a decent conversation with anyone. English people are ready to help and be as friendly as possible.
  • Buses: For York, expect the First York buses especially the Pink or lightly decorated in blue buses because they run from the city centre to the University and vice -versa. To ease up the burden of identifying which bus top get on to certain places, download the First Bus App that provides all the locations, the appropriate buses and gives direction to the bus stops and time for arrival.

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Student Content Team

Student Content Team

Hi! We're the Student Content Team. In our own words, they'll give you an authentic insight into what life as a York student is really like.