Plan for your journey
There are a few things you need to do and know before travelling to Scotland to study with us.
Our pre-departure checklist is here to help you prepare and make sure you do not forget anything - you can print this as a reminder of the things to check before coming to Glasgow.
Knowing what to bring, what not to bring and what to expect may also help you prepare for your new life in Scotland.
What should I do before I travel to the UK?
Please ensure you check the Scottish Government guidance on international travel and the university's travel advice for international students.
As well as the preparations you will make for your studies in the UK, outlined on the Pre-departure Checklist above, there are also specific preparations you need to make for international travel at this time. This includes Covid-19 testing, completing the online Passenger Locator Form and other arrangements. Please check the university’s travel advice for international students for full details.
Where can I get more information about self-isolation/quarantine requirements?
There are a number of factors that determine where self-isolation/quarantine must take place, including where you are travelling from and whether you arrive in Scotland directly or indirectly. Please check the university’s travel advice for international students for full details.
How can I prepare for self-isolate/quarantine?
Please see the UofG Covid-19 Self-isolation Support information with many useful resources on taking care of your mental and physical wellbeing when self-isolating, as well as practical tips on making preparations for food, toiletries, money and other essential items for living during the self-isolation/quarantine period.
What should I do on arrival in the UK?
Please familiarise yourself with the information on the Scottish Government webpage in order that you can follow the national rules on Coronavirus in Scotland, including staying 2m away from other people and wearing face coverings.
- Scottish Government international travel and managed isolation information
- UofG travel advice for international students
- UofG Coronavirus FAQs
- UofG Covid-19 Self-isolation Support information
- UofG Living
- UofG Travel Plans form
- UKCISA Coronavirus info for international students
Information on airport eGates
Information on eGates
Since summer 2019 more travellers have been able to use eGates on arrival in the UK at 15 major airports (including Glasgow, Edinburgh and Heathrow airports) and Eurostar terminals. EGates use facial recognition technology to check your identity against the photo in your passport and therefore the arrival process should be much quicker. In addition to UK, EU and EEA nationals who can already use eGates, nationals of Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the United States of America can also now use the eGates. Please however note the following important points:
- You cannot use eGates if you are travelling with children under 12
- You cannot use eGates if you are using a national ID card or passport which does not have a biometric chip
See the Home Office guidance on entering the UK for advice about what to do and expect at border control.
You should also have documents relating to:
- your studies
- your finances
- where you are going to stay
in your hand baggage, in paper form (not on an electronic tablet or mobile phone).
What not to bring
What not to bring
It is illegal to bring some items to the UK, including some food items - please take particular note of the information below.
The Scottish Government’s Animal Disease Control Branch has advised us of the importance of not bringing pork meat or pork products into the UK, due to the possible threat of it containing African swine fever (ASF). ASF is a highly contagious notifiable disease of pigs caused by a virus and there is no vaccine. The virus can survive for long periods in raw, cooked, and frozen meat. Please therefore ensure that you, or your family, do not pack any of these products in your luggage.
If you are thinking about bringing your pet or some food or plants from your home country, view the Government's guidance to make sure you meet all the rules and EU regulations when arriving in the UK.
You can also find out more here about goods you can’t bring into the UK.
Shipping your goods to the UK
To make sure you don’t pay too much tax when shipping your goods to the UK, Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has created a Customs Procedure Code which is 4000C06. You should give this code to your courier who will attach it to a C88 form. This code covers the tax for clothes, books and any personal items you’ll need for your time at University. If you use a postal service you will need to pay and then reclaim import VAT.
What to expect
Life in Scotland may be very different than in your home country. First of all, the weather - people in Scotland love speaking about the weather! The reason for this is that the weather in Scotland is unpredictable. It can rain, snow and be sunny on the same day. For this reason, you always need to be prepared for all weather. As we say in Scotland “There is no bad weather, only wrong clothes!”
The days are short during autumn and winter but they are long during spring and summer.
The food may also be very different from the food you can find in your home country. Nevertheless, you can find all sorts of food in Scotland and especially in Glasgow. Glasgow has a lot of international food shops (Asian, Chinese, African etc.) and therefore you should be able to find the food you enjoy in your home country.
Find out more about traditional Scottish food such as black pudding, haggis, full Scottish breakfast, fish & chips and shortbread.
Glasgow has also a lot of great restaurants, delis, award winning take-away shops and farmers' markets! In the last few years it has become a foodie destination and you can be sure to find amazing food for all budgets!
Scotland has a strong cultural identity and a lot of customs and traditions. Scotland is more than just kilt, bagpipes and haggis.
You may experience "culture shock" when you arrive in Scotland. It is important that you know how to identify the symptoms and how to deal with it.