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Arriving in the UK

By the time you arrive in the UK, your journey is almost at an end and you are nearly ready to start your studies. It is natural to feel both excited and nervous.

The final thing you need to do is get through the border. This is normally easy but make sure you have all of your documents available, just in case you are asked any questions.

There can be long queues at immigration and we know that this is frustrating, especially after a long flight. However, if you have everything available, you can help speed up the process.

We have published some useful hints and tips about arriving in the UK on our UniHub pages and the Border Force have also published this guidance.

  • FAQs

    • When should I arrive?

      Make sure you arrive in time to start your studies. Most students who are stopped at the airport have arrived late, and the Immigration Officers are always suspicious of this.

      Sometimes delays happen and they cannot be avoided. But if you are late, bring permission from your institution.

    • What documents will I need?

      Keep the following documents in your hand luggage as you may need them when you arrive:

      • CAS
      • Passport
      • Visa 
      • Offer Letter
      • Recent Bank Statements
      • Medical Evidence

      You won't be able to access your main luggage until after passport control, so don't put these documents in there!

      Don't forget to fill in a landing card – this is usually done on the plane.

    • Do I need to know my address?

      Make sure you know where you are staying and where you are studying. The border guard will often ask for your address or the address of your institution.

      It is a good idea to have these addresses written down on a piece of paper. This will also help you to arrange your journey when you leave the airport.

    • Is there anything I'm not allowed to bring into the UK?

      Make sure you know about what you can/cannot bring into the UK. Some items also have an 'allowance' (such as alcohol and cigarettes) and you cannot bring in more than this.

      If you have more than 10,000 euros (or equivalent) in cash, you must declare this at customs. You may also have to declare your personal luggage, depending how much you bring with you.

      Some items, such as weapons, drugs, and dairy/meat products may not be brought into the UK at all. Do not try to enter the UK with any banned or restricted item as this is a serious offence.

      If you have items to declare, you must use the red lane at customs. If you have nothing to declare, you should use the green lane.

      You can find out more about what you are allowed to bring with you into the UK on the HM Revenue and Customs website.

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