Devon Lampard, London Relocation‘s Moving Coach has some great advice for students moving to London based on her own experiences moving from Canada to London, six years ago.
If you are a student looking to move abroad to complete your studies and are looking for the experience of a lifetime – London is the place for you!
The other prep work is less stressful but can be time-consuming, if you’re anything like me and think that you need to be prepared for anything – including blizzards which, actually do not happen in London! One thing to remember is you will not have space nor the need, to fit your entire life into a couple of suitcases.
Bring the essentials for clothes; it is a great idea to bring clothes that can be layered. The temperature can change pretty quickly when it starts to rain and will chill you to the bone.
The home essentials that you will need are things like bedding and towels. Homewares (crockery and cutlery) can be purchased locally for way less than the price you will pay for excess baggage.
The preparations for the big move can seem like a mountain of paperwork and can be quite daunting at first. But trust me, once you’ve completed the application process for the university – “Uni” as the Brits all call it, arranged your visa and started onto your travel plans that is half the work done! Be sure to take copies of ALL your documents, and make certified copies (signed by a Commissioner of Oaths or lawyer) or all the important ones. You’ll need the copies for a myriad of things once you arrive in London: Bank accounts, doctors, cell phone accounts, utilities, etc
I’d suggest that you also make copies of important documents from back home. Copies of financial records, medical information and legal documents.
Electronics. Let’s be honest, we all live in an age where we spend a lot of money on good electronics because they will help us study more and get good grades – that’s what I told my parents anyway! The outlets/plugs in the UK are very different to those in the US and Canada; I would suggest making a trip to the local electronic store or Apple store when you arrive and purchase a new charger that is made for the sockets here so that you do not burn out your electronic devices. Even if the adapter says it will convert the power I would be wary – this is how I ruined a really good straightener! I would have been devastated if it fried my laptop.
Make sure when you are packing that you are aware your living space in London is most likely going to be a lot smaller than what you are used to. You will not have the closet/cupboard space you are used to. Typically, you will have a wardrobe and a chest of drawers – if you are lucky! My first flat was 164 sqft and the wardrobe was smaller than small!
Happy packing and see you soon!