International pre-departure checklist

Students studying in our campus restaurant

As an international student coming to study at the University of Surrey, there are a number of things you must do before you travel to the UK.


Apply for your visa

When applying for your visa, you may also be required to apply for an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certificate in order to begin your studies.

Apply now

Apply for accommodation

Apply for University accommodation, await an acceptance email and submit your pre-payment.

Apply now

Check your passport

Your passport needs to be valid for at least six months after the start of your course. If you have to order a new passport, please scan a copy of this and send this to the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) team. You will need to do this even if you have already received your visa.

Get travel insurance

Take out travel insurance to cover any loss of luggage or delays and the cancellation of your flight.

Book your meet and greet

Get collected from Gatwick or Heathrow airports by booking a meet and greet (airport pick-up).

Book your place

Book your orientation

Book a place on our International Orientation Programme to attend a host of events and socialise with other international students.

Book onto the programme

Visit your doctor

For ongoing medical conditions, bring with you a good supply of medicine and a letter from your doctor or medical notes translated into English.

Set up your IT account

As soon as you are notified through the applicant portal, set up your IT account. Keep your confirmation of registration as you will need to show this when you register in person at the University.

Find out more

Register for a GP

You can register with a local doctor online before you arrive to save time. 

Find out more

Set up a UK bank account

Set up a UK bank account online and transfer funds to cover living costs and accommodation for when you are in the UK.

Find out more

Order UK currency

To help cover the first few weeks in the UK including small amounts of cash for use at the airport and your first few days at Surrey, we recommend getting no more than £400 in currency.

Book a pre-departure Covid-19 test

You will need to present a negative Covid-19 test result before departing for England so make sure you have booked this in advance.

Find out more

Book an asymptomatic Covid test

All students are also required to take a free Covid-19 test before you start face-to-face teaching to help us protect each other.

Book a test

Pack your bags

When you are coming to the UK for a year or more, it is hard to decide what to bring. View our what to pack guide for our recommendations.

Packing advice

Top tips

View our semester and vacation dates to plan ahead.

Find useful information about studying and living in Britain on the British Council and Prepare for Success websites.

Email your family copies of your passport and UK Visas and Immigration decision letter, in case of an emergency.

Get your phone unlocked so that it can be used with any a UK sim card.