Navigating your first year at university can be tough, it’s probably your first taste of independence and most likely your first time away from home.
So, knowing how to survive your first week, and even your first year at uni can be difficult. Here are some tips on what you can do, to make settling into uni life a little bit easier.
The prepared people out there will likely have your uni admin sorted before you land in freshers week. If there’s anything else out there that you need to sort, freshers week is the perfect chance, before all the boring stuff starts.
: Think you need to stock up on a few essentials? Check through our
uni starter pack checklist
to make sure you’re not going to be caught in a pinch when you need something the most.
: Check all your details regarding your
. Make sure that you have sorted out both your
before you get to university. This is pretty important if you want your funds to land in time for your first weeks at Uni.
Figure Out How To Do The Washing
: Soz for boring adult life things.
How to use your uni washing machine
. You’re gonna want to figure it out, because so many people have told us stories that Circuit Laundry is beyond the worst. Just a warning, you will be robbed every time you want to put a load of washing in. That’s all part of the fun, right?
Student TV License
: Don’t forget about declaring if you need a TV License or not,
click here to figure if that applies to you or not
: You’re going to need to figure out which is the
best student bank
Student Sim Contracts
: Make the most of your new student discount and have a look at our
best sim only deals
: Looking to set your flat up with new broadband? Those of you in student halls likely won’t need to worry about this. But if you need to get set up in a privately rented flat or house,
check out the best broadband deals here
Take a walk around your university campus throughout freshers week and get to know your campus a bit better. Have a trip to the library too (this sounds boring, but you’ll thank yourself when term time and deadline season hits). You will probably have to be on campus for some of your freshers week anyway- especially if you have introductory lectures or something similar. However, it is still useful to have a walk around and familiarise yourself with the buildings and where you need to be.
This is a great way to not only get to know your campus a bit better, but also to see what your university has to offer in terms of societies. It is also a great way to get a few freebies as well (there’s always free food on offer, and who doesn’t love that).
When your first
Student Finance Maintenance Loan
instalment lands, it’s all too tempting to go mad and spend it all as quickly as you can. But nobody wants to be left living out your overdraft for the remainder of the semester. If you budget right, then you can definitely enjoy your time at Uni to the fullest.
Prioritise your spending. How much you receive for your maintenance loan will generally dictate your budget, but regardless, take into consideration your outgoings (rent, shopping, travel etc…) and see how much you have left and how much you can/would like to spend (as you might want to save as well). Read more about
how you can budget better at university here
Whichever way you look at it, you’re likely going to burn through a lot of cash during your time at uni. It’s pretty likely your maintenance loan won’t cover everything you need it to (it might not even cover your rent) and your parents’ might not be able to help you out much. So, getting a job to earn some extra cash can really help you out. It will also
look great on your CV
for future career aspirations. This is another way to make friends away from your course, and will help you integrate into your new university city a bit better.
When you first move out, you’re going to want to get involved with as much as you can. It’s the perfect chance to pick up a new hobby or join societies you like the look of. Chances are, there will be something out there you want to get involved in (no matter how weird some of the societies sound). Joining societies or having an interest outside of your course is so important to stay rounded and meet new people outside of those you live with.
When you first move away it’s easy to get caught up in your new independence, but don’t forget about life back home. Staying connected and sending updates to your family and friends or having a phone call with them every week, is great to keep the feelings of homesickness away. It’s a really securing feeling being able to rely on the people you have there for you back at home.
This isn’t just a tip for your first year or your first week at uni, this is something you should continue to do throughout your uni life. Make sure that you are still eating well, drinking plenty of water, allowing time for yourself and allowing yourself time to relax. Keeping on top of your
mental health and wellness
will serve you well in the long run.
Eating well is an underrated thing, and the great news is there are so many student budget friendly recipes out there and ways
to save you money on buying food
, to let you eat well for a good price.
Don’t forget, getting bogged down in the boring stuff is no fun for anyone. Treat yourself, whether you fancy some new clothes, a nice meal out somewhere, or some home comforts for your room. It’s always good to do things for yourself.
Another tip not just for the freshers out there. As you’re heading out and embracing independence for the first time in a new city with new people, keep yourself safe. Now, we’re not saying don’t go out, or lay off the booze, but be mindful of how much you’re drinking as you get to know your new mates and new city. Always stick with your mates, and make sure that you’re in a good enough state to know where you are, and how to get yourself home. It goes without saying to keep an eye on your drink. Sketchy characters are around looking to take advantage of party goers any way they can.
Making your uni room feel more comfy and cosy is so important. No one really wants to be going back to a room that could pass for a prison cell. Hang up some pictures, have a nice little colour theme, and chuck in a plant and some nice pillows to make your room have a bit more of a ‘homely’ feel. You can make your room look great, even if you are on a budget.
It's totally normal to feel lost when you first head to uni, even if you've done it the year before. Just remember, everyone else is in the same boat, so speak to your mates and get a vibe of what everyone else is doing to get them through. Want to figure out everything else there is to know about getting through, head on over to our