Prepare to start

Whether you are moving town, moving country, or staying in London, use the time before you arrive to prepare for university life.

Here are some tips on how to take care of some vital things before you start at City, in order to make the most of your time here.

Top tips from our current students

Welcome to City! We are a team of current students who have put together these handy documents to help you settle in at City. We remember how many questions we had at the start of our courses, so we hope this page will help to answer yours.

Before you arrive in London/ the UK

Arrange your accommodation in London

nullCity's Accommodation Service offers a range of safe, modern and comfortable accommodation which is located close to the City, University of London campus. Study areas and cooking facilities are provided and single-sex accommodation is available if requested early.

If you are coming to City, University of London as a result of gaining a place on a course through Clearing, you will usually need to secure accommodation in the private sector, as City's halls of residence will most likely be fully let by that time.

Keep in touch with home

nullEmail and the internet provide cheap and easy ways to stay in touch and international students can obtain international phone cards to help keep costs low.

The postal system in UK is reliable, so if you prefer to write letters, this is another option. If parents or guardians are worried and have not been in touch with you for some time, they can contact the Institution and we will pass a message on asking you to make contact with them. It is quite common for new students to be busy with their studies, perhaps working part-time and involved with clubs, sports and socialising in their first term at City. Adapting to student life can sometimes mean that communication may not be as frequent as you would like.

Please be aware that due to the Data Protection Act in the UK University staff are not permitted to discuss with parents and guardians any aspect of your academic progress or attendance at the Institution. Neither can staff divulge any information about your enrolment status or your physical whereabouts. Whilst we appreciate that parents will have concerns about such things, it is only from you that they will be able to obtain this information. Should parents make these types of enquiries with the University, then staff will only be able to pass a message on to you and ask that you get in contact with them.

Familiarise yourself with London weather

The UK's climate is moderate. The weather is however often changeable and difficult to predict. It is advisable for students to have clothing for a variety of conditions. The coldest months tend to be November through to February and warm clothing is needed for these months of the year.

The Met Office is the authority on meteorology in the UK and have a popular weather app downloadable for free.

Before you arrive at City

Open a bank account

Whether you are opening a bank account in the UK for the first time, or you're looking to transfer an existing account to a student account, you should shop around to make sure you get the best deal that suits your needs. When choosing, remember to check:

  • The amount of interest-free overdraft that's available
  • If they offer a credit card and what the charges are for it
  • How much the interest rate is for additional authorised borrowing

For more information, read our guide to student banking.

Register with a doctor

It is very important that you are registered with a local GP (family doctor) during your time in London.  If your former GP’s practice is outside London he/she will not be in a position to offer you emergency home visits.

The GP practice with close links to City, University of London is:

The Clerkenwel Medical Practice, Finsbury Health Centre, 17 Pine Street, London EC1R 0LP, Tel: +44 (0)20 7833 5906

If you wish to register with the Clerkenwell Practice, please complete the online registration form.

To find out more download the student health information flyer (PDF).

Download the Callmy app to receive Institution information

At City, we take your personal welfare and security very seriously. We are fortunate enough to operate in a very safe environment; however, on occasion we will want to communicate important information with you that may affect your experience at City, such as building closures, transport issues or other emergencies.

City has invested in 'Callmy', an emergency messaging service to achieve this. It is essential that you download and install the Callmy app to ensure that you receive emergency information.

To download the Callmy app:

  1. Visit the iOS, Android or Windows 8 app store
  2. Search 'Callmy' and download the app
  3. Follow 'City, University of London' using the Callmy ID: CUL243.

If you have any issues using the app, please contact the Security team on 020 7040 3170.

Read our Student Charter

City is committed to providing you with an excellent educational experience to enable you to realise your ambitions and fulfil your potential. Staff and students work together to achieve this aim and this defines not only what you can expect from City but also what City expects from you. Read our Student Charter.

On campus and the local area

Find out where to practice your faith

The Chaplaincy Team at City, University of London offers a welcome to every faith, belief and culture.

They provide a range of different services, such as:

  • Faith support
  • Information on local religious communities
  • General pastoral care
  • Interfaith dialogue resources
  • Bereavement advice

The Chaplaincy team includes: The Chaplaincy Coordinator, Imam and five Honorary Assistant Chaplains.

Is the chaplaincy for everyone?

Yes, the service is provided to everyone regardless of their beliefs. The chaplaincy will provide general support for anyone in need and be a "listening ear". The chaplains are available to everyone and you can ask to talk to any of the team.

How does the Institution support my religious practice?

New for the coming academic year is ‘City Faith Centre’, a brand new suite of rooms comprising a Multi-Faith room, a Quiet Reflection Lounge and dedicated Muslim prayer rooms complete with ablution facilities for male and female students. Details of the rooms and opening times are available on our Faith section.

Friday Prayers for Muslim students and staff are led by our University Imam and other members of the University Community in the Great Hall

For further details contact the Chaplaincy Coordinator: Ian.Worsfold.1@city.ac.uk

Safety in London

It is natural to be concerned about safety in a capital city and just like any large city, London has a diverse mix of areas, some of which are considered safer than others. Overall, we would recommend that anyone living in a capital city is aware of their own personal safety.

City has a team of security staff on campus and the City halls of residence have staff on-call 24 hours to deal with emergency situations and security matters.

Read the Metropolitan Police's guide on crime prevention.

Health and Safety at City

Your safety is important to us so please familiarise yourself with emergency arrangements at City.

Emergency Number

You can get help in the event of an emergency by calling the following numbers:

  • Internal phone: 3333
  • Mobile: 0207040 3333

Fire

If you discover a fire, you must:

  • raise the alarm using the nearest fire alarm call point
  • call the emergency number so they can investigate and alert emergency services
  • evacuate the building using the nearest fire exit and report to the assembly point as directed by the fire wardens

On hearing a continuous alarm you must:

  • Evacuate the building as quickly as possible, using the nearest safe exit.
  • Do not use lifts
  • Ensure that staff/students/visitors who need assistance or are disabled are escorted to a Refuge Area to await arrival of emergency services
  • Report to the Fire Warden at your designated assembly point
  • Do not re-enter the building or leave the assembly point until advised by Security that you can do so

If you are likely to need assistance to evacuate in the event of a fire or other emergency please make this known to your School/Department at the time that you join the Institution. You will be asked to contribute to a Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP) that will apply in your place of study.

First aid

If you have an accident you can get help from a first aider by calling the emergency number who will call the nearest first aider to you.

In the event of a serious injury or illness call the emergency number and security can call for an ambulance. Be prepared to give the nature of the accident/injury; the condition of the casualty; your exact location (including building name, floor, room number etc.)

See more information about Health and Safety at City University.

Make the most of discounts

We all know that one of the perks of being a student is the discounts. Whether this is your first time in higher education or you’re returning for further study, you will definitely appreciate being able to save a few pounds. From travel to our favourite clothes shops – there is lots on offer:

Oyster Cards

We know that a lot of you will need to use public transport to get to campus. As a student, you’re eligible for a discounted Oyster Card. If you are still 18 in August, you can use a 16+ Oyster card for the first year of University. If you are 18 or over and are in full time education in London, you can use the 18+ Oyster. Find out more on the TfL website, or visit the Student Centre for further information. This include mature and postgraduate students, check the website for terms and conditions.

Railcards

Good news –if you are studying for 15 hours or more per week for at least 20 weeks of the year, yes you are eligible for a railcard! Head to the 16-25 Railcard Website for more information.

We know that lots of you will be commuting to university during the academic year. As postgraduate or research student, you may be eligible for travel discounts. If you are over 25, you can now apply for the 26-30 Railcard.

Don’t let the names fool you. You can apply for a railcard, no matter your age, if you are studying full-time at a college or University for 15 hours or more a week for at least 20 weeks a year. Read the full eligibility criteria.

**The Student Centre can provide the University stamp needed to confirm your student status for Oyster Cards and Railcards.

The Student Art Pass

Whether you are new to London or a long-time resident, visiting the city’s galleries and exhibitions is great way to spend your time. The Student Art Pass can help get you started. It supports students to see art and culture by providing free or discounted entry to over 240 museums, galleries and historic houses and 50% off major exhibitions. It can be used throughout the UK. Membership costs £5 a year. The discounted membership is available for a limited time only, keep an eye out for the next release in September.

TOTUM

This (formerly NUS extra) is a great scheme that can be can be used to access over 200 discounts. You can buy for the card, download the app or use it online with some retailers. You can purchase the TOTUM card for 1, 2 or 3 years.

Unidays

This is another discount provider that you download as an app or use on your desktop. There are lots of retailers to choose from. Unidays is completely free!

Student Beans

This app and website is another free discount scheme. It allows you access to discounts online and instore.

Spotify Student

Need a soundtrack for your studies? Get 50% off when you verify your student discount.

Amazon Prime Student

This is a membership programme gives you a 6-moth free trial and discounted access to Amazon Prime. This means you can get your Uni supplies delivered next-day or same-day in some areas.  Prime Video and Amazon Music is also included in the membership.

Your City ID card

Yes, your university ID card can also earn you discounts in stores. Remember, some outlets will only accept some of the student discount cards and apps mentioned previously.

A final tip: if you are unsure whether a retailer offers discounts for students, just ask. If they don’t, the worst they can say is no.

Sign up for support

Get a CityBuddy Mentor

A CityBuddy is a second or third year student on your course who will mentor you during your first term. They will guide you around campus, answer any questions you may have about starting at City and provide a valuable insight into studying on your course.

To find out more and apply for a mentor, please visit the CityBuddy website.

Access the support for care leavers

There is a range of support available specifically for care leavers at City. This includes additional financial support and bursaries, special accommodation arrangements and guaranteed access to the Buddy Scheme.

Read more about support for care leavers

Develop your skills

Learn about activities that fit alongside your studies

University is about much more than getting a degree. Here at City, you can get the skills, contacts and experience that will help you succeed when you leave.

Experience City is your gateway to becoming the ‘complete graduate’. From mentoring and paid work to volunteering and networking opportunities, it’s your fast track to valuable and enjoyable activities.

Visit Experience City to see everything you can get involved with.

Learn how to gain the City Employability Award

The City Employability Award has been designed to boost your employability and help you stand out to employers throughout the job application process.

Discover more about the City Employability Award.

Kick-start your career as a future entrepreneur

If you are interested in enterprise and entrepreneurship and want to start the next big thing, or find work experience and internship opportunities with London's most exciting and dynamic start-up companies, then we are here to help.

The CityStarters team support the 'can do' culture of innovation at City by teaching, training and inspiring the next generation of student entrepreneurs.

Visit the CityStarters website to find out more about all the entrepreneurial activities, seminars, competitions and networking events happening at City and sign-up to meet like-minded students and successful entrepreneurs from London's thriving start-up community.

Prepare to go Green

nullCity is nationally recognised for its environmental achievements, and was awarded a First Class Award in the People & Planet University League 2015, the UK's only comprehensive and independent green ranking of universities. City ranks 5th in the country and 1st amongst London universities.

If you are interested in making a positive impact on your institution and the local community, then consider joining City's Sustainability Leader programme. This programme gives you the chance to work alongside City’s Sustainability Team to deliver fun and engaging activities and events which raise awareness on sustainability at City and beyond. Training and support is included and you will have an opportunity to network with like-minded people while boosting your employability skills.

Learn more about City's ongoing sustainability projects