Traveling alone or in groups can be very expensive, especially if you are visiting London or other main cities. However, if you follow our guide then hopefully we can help you save the money you need for another wonderful adventure abroad. Thus, below you will find all the information on how to see the UK on a budget
In the UK, you can use public transports to get around the city you are visiting. These include:
- Buses – It is more suitable for those who are traveling inside one city. If you are thinking of going to all those attractions in one day, you can purchase an all-day ticket which can save you more than getting a return or single ticket. That way you can travel using buses to anywhere within the zone. Specifically, you could also use the sightseeing tour buses in many cities that will take you to popular sites!
- Train – Trains can be cheaper and quicker to travel from town to town. For those who are traveling to the UK to study or stay for a longer term then you can purchase a railcard to save you money when taking the train. For traveling in cities such as London, you can purchase an Oyster card to make your traveling easier!
For those who travel in groups of 4 or 5, hiring a car is an alternative option to travel if one of you have a driving license.
Nonetheless, it is best to book your tickets in advance to save costs when using public transports or flights. We recommend using booking sites such as Trainline, Red Spotted Hanky, Megabus. Virgin Trains can sometimes work out cheaper than booking sites as they sometimes offer a cheaper price if you book a few months in advance.
In the UK, some museums are free to visit and yet, some requires an entrance fee. For free museums, they may ask for a small donation although that is not essential. Read on Trip Advisor before your trip to see which ones have the best reviews! If you know which ones you want to go then be sure to check out Groupon to see whether or not there is a deal so that you can save that extra cash! There may also be free events in the local area so research them beforehand!
If you are traveling to the UK to study then you may want to look at the average prices for rent in the towns or cities. Spareroom can help you find a room to stay with other flatmates similar to you.
On the other hand, you can use Airbnb to look for accommodations provided by hosts. They offer a cheaper and cost-effective way for short-stays than hotels. You can also use B&B (Bed and Breakfast) accommodations that are also relatively cheap. If you are a solo traveler then hostels are recommended for you as you can meet other people similar to you. However, always ask for advice when traveling alone and be careful when staying in an unknown location on your own.
You should also be prepared to pay more in certain cities such as London and rather than eating out all the time, you may choose to buy and cook your own food if you have the facilities. If you are eating out in London then be aware that there may be a service charge incurring.
One of UK’s cheapest retailer is Primark and you can buy clothing there rather than bigger brands that cost ten times more. Remember if you are a student then you can use your student card to get discounts. Don’t forget that you can also get a tax refund from many shops so that can save you more money! Finally, we recommend that you should avoid tourist shops. Although they have a lot of cultural/ iconic items to purchase, their prices tend to be more expensive.
Moreover, if you want to ask more questions about studying abroad, do not hesitate and join Hellouni community! Register on our website and get in contact with ambassadors from various universities around the world.
In this week’s live stream (23rd June 2017) across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, our HelloUni presenters Joanne, Mandy and Manal gives advice on what to do if you are unsure on where to study. To many school leavers out there, it can be quite challenging to find a place (or course) to study if they are uncertain of what their ideal future career is, or perhaps they have no idea at all as to what to do with their life after secondary school. That’s why we are here to help you to answer your worries.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU DON’T KNOW WHERE TO STUDY
Choosing your course
- What you enjoyed at school
With a wide range of school subjects available in school, you may have one particular subject that you enjoyed the most. If that is the area you are interested in then why not choose that as a course in University?
- What grades you achieved in exams
You may have a few subjects that you have done particularly well in. You could progress into university studying those subjects based on the grades you have achieved thanks to your hard work!
- Specific career in mind
If you already know which career you want to pursue in, then all you need to do is to find out which university degree you need. In the UK, it is not imperative for graduates to work in a field related to their degree. This mean graduates can work in another industry that does not relate to the degree they earned. Therefore, if you have achieved your degree but do not want to work in that area, then you can take your degree and work in a completely different field!
- Attend Open days
Going to Open days is a good idea to find out more about those universities that you are interested in to study. For many of these universities in the UK, you will need to book in advance to secure your place. As each universities are different, their dates for their Open days are unlikely to be on the same date! So check on their university website to find out more. Remember to take the opportunity to ask the staffs about any questions you have in mind.
- Read course content
If you have doubt about which courses you should study then you should read the course content available on university websites or prospectuses. It will tell you what you will be studying in that course during your 3-4 years in university. You should also research into it by asking people on forums if you want to know more, ask ambassadors of the university, or speak to a friend or family members.
The location of the university could be one important factor to consider when deciding where to study. Furthermore, the decision to apply for a specific university could be based on what to university is famous for. Search on the web to find out which university you could study in near you or try out our app for free to see which university suits you!
- Do a short course
While in secondary school, you could do a short course in college to gain a qualification. Ask your guidance teacher or a careers adviser for information. If you have enjoyed it and want to pursue it as a career then you could choose it in university and achieve a degree.
- Work experience
During fourth year of secondary school, many school pupils will have the opportunity gain work experience at a field of their choice. This could be something you liked doing and want to do as a career. On the other hand, you could experiment around to experience working in other industries to find the right career path for you.
You could go to college to study different courses and gain a diploma if you are unsure what to do. This will give you an insight of what those courses involve. You can then proceed to study for a degree a course at university.
- Year out/ Travel
Take a break after school to go travelling or working to decide what you want to do. You don’t need to hurry to make a decision right away. Universities are not for everyone. Just because your friends are all going to them does not mean you have to follow the same path. Be who you want to be and take as much time as you need. You don’t want to end up working for a job you hate!
Perhaps you want to work your way up. You can apply for many apprenticeship schemes available in many large organisations.
It is okay to feel unsure of what you want to do or where to study. Many people experience the same thing as you do. Just remember to ask for help and talk to someone who has the knowledge to help you to make the right decision.
That’s why HelloUni provides a free app for everyone to use. With over 50,000 courses and universities to choose from, the app matches you to a range of recommended courses based on your requirements. Ask any questions you have to our new Chatbot feature! Download Now
We hope you find this article helpful. If you want to find out about ‘Sightseeing and Coming to the UK’ CLICK HERE.
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Studying abroad can seem very expensive, and in some ways it is. However, if you learn how to manage your money and find good deals, living in another country can be surprisingly affordable. You want to get the most out of your study abroad experience and by saving a little each month you can ensure you have the chance to travel the country and enjoy all of the new opportunities that are available there. Therefore, Hellouni presents five ways to save money while studying abroad:
Create a Budget
This is the most obvious tip for saving money, but it really is essential if you do not want to spend too much too quickly. Without a budget, you are likely to spend all of the money you have for the month, and it is easily done. It may be a good idea to use your first month of studying abroad as a trial period. You can see how much you spend and use this to estimate a budget for the rest of the year, whether based on the amount that you spend, or by cutting this amount down to a desired but realistic amount of money. However, it is important to bear in mind that the first month may be the most expensive due to purchasing home ware and everything you need to start off. Calculate how much you spend specifically on rent, food, social activities and things like clothing, and decide whether this is feasible or if you should cut back on some expenses for the next month. The money you are left with each month can be put into savings to use later.
Avoid Expensive Card Fees
Small charges on withdrawing money from an ATM using a card from your home country can quickly add up. For this reason, it is ideal to set up a new additional bank account when you come to the UK to use as your primary account and card. By setting it up in the country of studies, you will not incur international charges for withdrawing money. However, there is still the issue of losses from converting your money into pounds or transferring it to your new bank account from abroad. This cannot be completely avoided, but if possible it is best to transfer a large amount of money at a time to minimise losses. If your parents are sending you money they could send you more money every three or four months rather than transfer less every month. These tips can go a long way in preventing excessive spending where nothing is received in return.
Save on the Little Things
As much as you may think you do, you do not need to buy a coffee out every day or eat out every night. While you want to enjoy yourself as much as possible and try new foods and restaurants in the UK, cutting back spending on food and drinks out can really increase savings over time. A regular Starbucks coffee is around £3.30. If you buy coffee out every weekday, you could save £66 a month, less the small expense of buying coffee and milk, by getting up earlier and making coffee in your flat. Alternatively, having half the amount of coffee out a month would still save you £33. If you are not a big coffee drinker, look to other drinks/foods or other little things you spend money on that do not seem like much at the time but add up. You will be surprised how much you can save this way.
Transport is an area which may be one of the easiest to save money in. As an international student wanting to see the country, you may often use trains to visit new places as they are efficient and good quality. For international students in the UK: if you are aged between sixteen and twenty-five you can buy a railcard. This only costs £30 and reduces the price of rail tickets by a third on every journey you take. It is definitely worth the money. You can also consider saving money by taking buses rather than taxis in the city centre, as these are cheap and widely available in most UK cities. If you do decide to travel to other parts of Europe, it is possible to get very cheap flights. Flights from the UK to other places in Europe are relatively cheap anyway, but in sales they can be extremely cheap. Look out for sales, use a budget airline such as Ryanair or EasyJet, and use the Skyscanner website to find the cheapest flights for the destination you want to go to.
Have a Goal in Mind
The above tips are unlikely to work unless you have a reason in your mind for why you want to save money. It may be for traveling in Europe, but could equally be to go to an expensive concert, buy new clothes you really want or take part in a new activity abroad which involves membership fees. Once you have set a goal, it becomes easier to go without some things, knowing that doing so will help you to make the most of your study abroad experience and do the things that are a top priority for you.
HelloUni is a mobile app which allows you to compare university courses and find your perfect place for studying abroad.
Author: Caitlin Allan
This week, HelloUni presenters Caitlin and Mandy were live across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram on 16th June to talk about places for sightseeing in the UK and giving you tips when traveling from abroad. While there are many iconic places to visit in the UK, the presenters focused on the cities they know best: Glasgow, Edinburgh and London. These places not only provide a unique experience to anyone thinking of coming to UK to travel, but also an exciting destination to study abroad.
SIGHTSEEING AND TIPS FOR COMING TO THE UK
In the heart of Glasgow, there are many museums that you can visit within walking distance:
- Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery
Ranging from natural history of prehistoric animals, Ancient Egypt collection and Scottish history and archaeology to Scottish Art and Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Glasgow Style, you will find a vast and extensive display of different themes.
- Riverside Museum
With an impressive exterior appearance and housing over 3,000 objects for display such as the world’s finest cars, ship models and locomotives, this transport museum will impress visitors of all ages.
- Hunterian Museum (at University of Glasgow)
Known as Scotland’s oldest public museum, the museum displays a diverse collection of archaeology, zoology, and geology etc.
- People’s Palace and Winter Garden
The People’s Palace displays a collection of historical artefacts, photographs, prints and film which tells the story of how people lived in Glasgow from 1750 to the end of the 20th century. On the other hand, you can take a stroll in the beautiful Winter Garden with the view of exotic palms and plants.
- The Lighthouse
A visitor center with various ongoing exhibitions and events that promotes design and architecture. It is also the ideal place to start your Mackintosh tour of Glasgow.
As the capital city of Scotland, Edinburgh hosts many attractions that are well known to the public. While there is the Scottish Parliament, Scots Monument and the Scottish National Galleries, there are also many other places for sightseeing that are enjoyable for any visitors coming to the city:
- Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh castle is one of the top must see places as it locates closely to the busy center of the city. Its’ rich history, collection of treasured items and greatest guns of the medieval Europe boasts to be one iconic destination that you must not give a miss!
- Arthur’s Seat
Arthur’s Seat is the peak hill in Edinburgh that provides a spectacular view of the city. With two routes to two different locations on the top of the hill, locals and visitors can experience either a hill walk or a hike depending on their own preferences.
- Ghosts Tours
For those who wants to embark a thrilling adventure, the ghostly tours at the Underground Vaults is the tour right for you. As one of Edinburgh’s most haunted sites, you may be lucky enough to see the restless spirits right before your own eyes.
- Camera Obscura
The world of illusions offers a wide range of optical experiences within all five floors of the attraction. Here, you can find your way through the mirror maze, enter the rotating vortex tunnel or use the rooftop telescope to get a better view of the city below.
- Edinburgh Zoo
If you love animals like we do then you must visit the Edinburgh Zoo. Take your time to visit the different animals in their exhibits and remember to take a look at the two giant pandas in their exhibits as they are the only two pandas housed in the UK.
Being the capital city in the UK, London is also the leading tourist destination in the world. With so many sightseeing locations in London, where do you start? Well, rest assure as we give you 10 attractions on our bucket list:
- Big Ben
- London Eye
- Buckingham Palace (N.B. Must book in advance)
- The Shard (N.B. It is cheaper in the morning)
- Harry Potter Studio Tours
- Madame Tussauds
- The Tower of London
- London Bridge and Tower bridge
- The British Museum
- West End Shows
TIPS FOR VISITING
Whether you have decided to visit the UK as your next holiday destination, wants to come over to study in the UK or you simply want to visit other parts of the UK, read our 5 tips we want to share with you before you advance your journey.
- Save money before you come. It’s obvious isn’t it? But big cities such as London are expensive as attractions are not usually free, they have high costs for hotels and accommodations, and food and drink expenses tend to cost higher in comparison to other cities in the UK.
- Different accents in Scotland and England, as well as areas between Scotland itself. When speaking to locals within the city, be aware of their strong accents that they may have. If you don’t understand them, don’t be afraid to ask again.
- Wear warm clothes. In Scotland, it tends to be more colder, windier and wetter than England, so be WARNED!
- VAT are included in prices.
- If you are coming to study in the UK, the university system is different from what you would expect. Be sure to check it out on the university website when you have arrived.
We hope you have found this article useful. For information on what to expect when starting university read here.
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The UK has long been a popular location for celebrities to pursue degrees. From British born celebrities, to stars who chose to study abroad in the UK, there is no shortage of talent that has attended British universities. Actors, singers, writers and even a US President, here is a look at six celebrities who decided the UK was the place for them.
The lead singer of the band, Chris Martin, met guitarist Johnny Buckland during orientation week at University College London (UCL). Martin studied ancient world studies and Buckland astronomy and mathematics. They planned forming a band during their first year, and later met the other bandmates at the university, as well as their future manager.
To Kill a Mockingbird novelist Harper Lee studied law at the University of Alabama but left to pursue her writing ambitions. However, in the summer of 1948 she returned to education to study abroad at the University of Oxford in England. Lee’s novel was not published until she was thirty-four years old, and her university experience undoubtedly played a role in furthering her natural writing talent.
Well known actor and film producer Hugh Grant also attended Oxford University at New College, but studied there for his full university experience. His degree was in English Literature but Oxford provided the perfect opportunity for him to work on acting alongside his studies. It was at Oxford that he made his first film debut, starring in Privileged, the first release from the Oxford Film Foundation.
Scottish actor Gerard Butler, known for movies such as P.S. I Love You, Nim’s Island, Lara Croft Tomb Raider and 300, studied law at the University of Glasgow. He was the President of the university law society and his first job was as a trainee lawyer at an Edinburgh law firm. He soon moved to London to become an actor, and had various jobs before his first professional acting job at the age of twenty-seven.
The UK was a study abroad location for a notable former US President. After receiving a degree from Georgetown University, Bill Clinton won a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford, which was where he studied Politics. He later returned to the US and attended Yale Law School, but Oxford proved a valuable experience. During his time in England he started playing rugby and participated in protests, such as those opposing the Vietnam War.
American actor Paul Rudd, star of comedies, chick flicks and action movies, took some time away from the University of Kansas to study Jacobean drama at the British American Drama Academy. Given the success of his career now, it seems he made a good choice. Among other students of the academy is Friends star David Schwimmer and Orlando Bloom, who both attended for a period of time.
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Keep checking our blog hellouni.mobi for tips on studying abroad worldwide!
Author: Caitlin Allan