skip to main content

Study abroad checklist

If you are considering studying abroad, this study abroad checklist will help you understand what you need to do before you make the move.

Last updated 15 January 2019 at 15:32

There are many things to consider when studying abroad and they can put into two distinct groups - emotional and practical.

This study abroad checklist deals with the practical side of things – unfortunately we don’t know you well enough to deal with your emotions.  Please take a look below at the tips and advice we've collated for those starting your new academic chapter abroad.

First thing’s first. Packing. Do you think some of your packed boxes may have exceeded the maximum weight allowance? Weigh your box on your bathroom scales and stand on the scales holding the box so that all you need to do is subtract your own weight from the total.

Always think about insurance if you’re shipping treasured possessions across the globe. Peace of mind and all that.

Start packing immediately – like yesterday – because it’s better to spread out the packing over a number of days rather than hastily packing everything on the last possible day.

Keep all documents and admin together in the same box such as academic certificates, job references, accommodation documents, NHS medical cards, etc. The same goes for electronic devices – keep them all together with their power cords, adaptors and memory sticks.  That way, you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for when you reach the other end.

Try to leave bulky items at home, regardless of how meaningful they may be. Framed film posters, large musical instruments, big books, if these kinds of items can be left at home, leave them at home, otherwise the transportation fees might go through the roof.

Do as much research online as you can for student accommodation before you leave.  Try and have something in place for your arrival. And if you can, try to recruit the help of local real estate companies and property experts to provide you with the details and advice you need.

Have you thought about money?  When you get to your destination country, you’ll need to set up a bank account so you can use ATM machines and the like.  Have a look around and find the best deal for you – student offers/discounts, etc.

Once you’ve arrived in your destination country, take time out to explore. Travel the various roads and routes that surround your home and your campus and acquaint yourself with them.  Also make a note of the local transport timetables before the semester starts because the last thing you want to be doing is standing on the corner of an unfamiliar street clutching your text books and wondering how you get to home from here.

For more information read our essential checklist for students packing for university, which offers advice for the most stress-free approach to international student relocation. 

Experts for Expats has been featured in...

Saga - Want to retire in the EU? What could the future hold for you? - click to see article
The Guardian - Brexit: how the new rules will change your visits to the EU - click to see article
MailOnline - A third of British expats would like to move back to the UK and 40% admit they are homesick... but they will stay abroad for a better quality of life - click to see article
The Guardian - The older expats facing poverty – thanks to Brexit and frozen pensions - click to see article
The Telegraph - The surprising places British expats can earn the most - click to see article
BBC Breakfast - Expats in Cyprus having issues with UK bank accounts - click to see article

What expats say about our experts

The expert was very friendly, helpful and precise in answering my questions on the rules on residence and domicile, and their effects on tax status, for UK-US dual citizens like myself and my wife. I was stimulated to confirm the salient points on Gov.UK. This has allowed us to plan our future stays in the US and UK. 

Donald T.

UK/US Tax matters introduction in United States

I was shocked after years of traveling to come across such a professional organised group. There are no hard sells only professional advice, when I make my next move I will follow up with them.

Michael M.

Portuguese Non-Habitual Residence introduction in Singapore

A very knowledgeable consultant gave me a thorough explanation of the issues involved, which was extremely helpful.

Warren B.

UK/US Tax introduction in United Kingdom

Having very little idea about my tax and personal finance obligations as a potential expat, both the information provided on the website and the advice I received from the consultant during the consultation was extremely helpful in answering my key concerns.

Jason D.

Tax introduction in United Kingdom

Seemed to work very smoothly, and I'm really happy to have got straight to someone who could help me

Andrew E.

UK Capital Gains Tax introduction in Germany

After dealing with PwC for many years, it was refreshing to deal with a person that sounded like he actually cared...

Rossana R.

Statutory Residence Test introduction in Denmark

I would just like to say a great big thank you for putting me in touch with Laurence, he has sorted out my issues efficiently and with better results than I had hoped for.

I am so glad to have found Experts for Expats, and shall be recommending your services.

Fiona G.

UK Tax Return, Capital Gains Tax introduction in South Africa

The advisor was excellent in giving clear and useful advice. I have already recommended him to another friend who is an international teacher who is seeking to invest her money.

Seema M.

QROPS introduction in Hungary