Arriving in the UK, Starting School and Settling In

Arriving in the UK – Tips for “first time” students

Border Force has produced a helpful list of top tips for first time students in the UK. The tips are designed to ensure students are not unduly delayed as they enter the UK by being more prepared for what they may need to present at border control. 

As part of your preparations for your studying in the UK, Border Force wants to make sure you have everything you need to get through the UK border as efficiently as possible. Follow these top tips for a smooth journey through the UK border: 

  1. Have your passport ready.
  2. Ensure you complete a landing card (if a non EEA National).
  3. Have your Certificate of Acceptance Studies (CAS) number ready. If you don't have a CAS number, please brings details of your course of study.
  4. Keep any medical documentation, recent bank statement and details of where you are staying in your hand luggage, we may ask to see this information.
  5. Do not bring in any meat or dairy products from outside the EU.
  6. There are also restrictions on other food products such as fish, eggs and honey, as well as some fruit, vegetables and plants (e.g. bulbs, seeds, cut flowers and tree bark). 
  7. There are also restrictions on the amount of tobacco, alcohol and gifts you can bring in the UK. If you exceed your duty-free allowance and do not declare them, all of your items could be taken away from you. 
  8. Never bring in counterfeit goods, illegal drugs, offensive weapons or indecent or obscene material. Some items are restricted and will require a licence or permit.
  9. You must declare any sums of cash of 10,000 euros or more (or the equivalent in another currency) if you are travelling from a country outside the European Union.
  10. Never give false or misleading information (including forged or counterfeit documents).
  11. Be aware that you may be interviewed at the UK border, this is to evaluate your competence in English.

Starting school and settling in

Once students arrive in Bristol they will be met by our International Admissions Officer who will support them throughout their time at Clifton High School. 

  • Over the first few weeks the International Admissions Officer will be on hand to provide support and guidance as the students settle in. The International Admissions Officer will have regular contact with students, tutors and the host family including helping students and families set the ground rules for living together.
  • All international students will be taken through a detailed induction programme at School and if necessary, will be fully supported by our English as an Additional Language (EAL) Department.
  • Once the student has settled into School, the International Admissions Officer remains in close contact and is at the School every week making sure they are on hand to support the students fully.
  • For those students intending to apply to university, they will receive tailor-made support for their university selection and application.

In 2014-2015, I was the Head Boy at Clifton High School. Being Head Boy at Clifton High School gave me a valuable understanding of leadership, taking responsibility and working with others. Through speeches given at assemblies and regular school events, I was particularly pleased to grow in confidence at public speaking. Additionally, Clifton High School gave me extraordinary help academically. Due to this, and because of my enthusiasm in building structures and my interest in concerns around public health and construction, I decided to pursue a degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering. I was privileged enough to gain a place at one of the top universities for Civil Engineering in the UK, the University of Leeds. I have embraced this course and achieved first class results in both my first and second years. 

In order to further develop my leadership experience, I was elected as the course representative in the School of Civil Engineering at university. As course representative, I represented civil engineering students in student forums and created dialogues between the school departments to resolve students’ concerns. In addition, I was elected as the treasurer of the British Born Chinese Society. I took charge of the society’s finance and collaboratively worked with other Leeds University Union cultural societies to integrate culturally diverse people. Through this role, I clearly understood our financial objectives and achieved the society’s aims.

Based on first and second year results, and my enthusiasm for engineering, I plan to pursue a Master’s degree. I shall be pursuing this at either University College London or King’s College London, who have both already offered me places. Achieving a Master’s degree will allow me to enhance my knowledge and my career prospects and an achievement I will find personally very fulfilling.

Tim