1. Be Culturally Aware
While the UK is not wildly different from other English speaking countries, making sure you’re culturally aware can go a long way towards making friends and keeping yourself socially connected. No one is asking or expecting you to know every single thing about the country or its history, but knowing you’re in Northern Ireland instead of the Republic of Ireland is an example of an important distinction that would go a long way towards showing you’ve tried to do your homework. Usually, when people find you’ve made an effort, they’re more likely to do the same themselves, and it’ll help you build new relationships with people in the UK.
2. Budget Your Money
As most students will be funding their studies with student loans, it’s important to know how to handle your money effectively. The universities will typically pay out the loans in lump sum payments that the student must then budget out for the year. When this happens, it can be very easy to forget you need to make the money you’ve been given last for your entire studies. Learning to budget your money effectively is a vital aspect of not just studying in Britain, but growing up in general.
3. Take Advantage of Travel
One of the largest advantages of studying in Britain is the easy access you’ll have to the vastly superior rail and public transport systems in the UK. For very little money, it’s possible to crisscross the island and see centuries worth of history and sights in a very short time. This is also, of course, to say nothing of the cheap travel opportunities for the rest of Europe. Studying in the UK can not only open doors professionally and academically, but personally as well. There’s no better way to learn about yourself than to travel anywhere you can, and Britain is one of the most well-connected places in the world to accomplish this.
4. Be Aware of Linguistic Differences
While the UK is obviously an English-speaking country, there are subtle differences between North American English and British English that will show themselves over the course of your studies. There’s no way to make sure these differences never result in embarrassment, but working to try and familiarize yourself can help you quite a lot. Take it from us, it’s a lot better to learn the difference between “pants” and “trousers” before you decide to tell your professors about your most recent shopping trip!