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    Arriving in the UK

    Tips for arriving into the UK

    By the time you arrive in the UK, you are nearly ready to start your studies and it's natural to feel excited and nervous. Once you're at the airport, the final thing to do is get through the border. There can be long queues at immigration and we know that this is frustrating, especially after a long flight. However, if you have all your documents available, you can help speed up the process. The UK Border Force has advice and guidance to help make your arrival in the UK as easy as possible.


    Keep the following documents in your hand luggage so you can easily show them if needed

    • Passport
    • Certificate of Acceptance Studies (CAS) number - if you don't have a CAS number, please bring details of your chosen course
    • Visa
    • Offer letter
    • Recent bank statements
    • Medical evidence

    Landing card

    You will need to ensure that you complete a landing card if you are a non EEA National. This will usually be done on the plane.


    Make sure you know the address of where you are staying and where you are studying. The border guard will often ask for your address or the address of your institution so it is a good idea to have these addresses written down on a piece of paper. This will also help you to arrange your journey when you leave the airport.

    Airport restrictions

    Make sure you know about what you can/cannot bring into the UK by visiting the HM Revenue and Customs website.

    Some items have a duty-free allowance (such as alcohol and cigarettes) and if you exceed this and do not declare them, all of your items could be taken away from you.

    If you have more than £10,000 (or equivalent) in cash, you must declare this at customs. You may also have to declare your personal luggage, depending how much you bring with you.

    There are also restrictions on other food products such as dairy, meat fish, eggs and honey, as well as some fruit, vegetables and plants (bulbs, seeds, cut flowers and tree bark).

    Some items, such as offensive weapons, illegal drugs, counterfeit goods or indecent or obscene material may not be brought into the UK at all. Do not try to enter the UK with any banned or restricted item as this is a serious offence.

    If you have items to declare, you must use the red lane at customs. If you have nothing to declare, you should use the green lane.

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