International students

We have more than 14,000 international students from 137 countries, making our campus one of the most diverse and multicultural in the UK. Welcome to our global community of students and staff at Leeds.

Check our 10 things to help you get started page to find out what steps all students need to complete. 

In this section, you can find information to help you prepare for your journey to Leeds.  You can also find more information to help you plan your first weeks and how you can make the most of your time in Leeds. 

Your visa   

Your visa

If you require a visa to study in the UK, it’s essential to allow plenty of time to find out what you need to do, apply for the correct visa, or make any changes needed (if you need to extend your visa or your circumstances change). 

If you’re a new student, check this visas and immigration guidance.

If you’re a student who needs to extend or make a change to your visa, visit the your visa page.  

It’s also important that you’re aware of the responsibilities you must comply with to maintain your permission to study in the UK.   

Your confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS)  

Our admissions team will email your CAS to you after you have accepted your unconditional offer. If you are a Masters student it will be issued after you have paid your tuition fee deposit or provided your exemption evidence (for sponsored students).  ​​​​​

Applying for your visa   

Make sure you follow the right steps when you apply for your visa by reading our visas and immigration information:  

Collecting your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) 

If you have a student visa or a short- term study visa and are attending a course for six months or longer, you’ll need to collect your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) in Leeds. Your BRP is the visa that covers the full duration of your course. 

Prepare for Leeds

When to arrive

Plan to be in Leeds in the recommended arrival week. Arriving in good time will give you the opportunity to explore the city, settle into your accommodation, attend International Orientation and welcome sessions hosted by your School. 

What to bring

We know there can be a lot to remember when you’re packing for university. To help you, we have put together a list of what to bring, including important documents and items you might need.  

Travel to Leeds

Our Travel to Leeds pages have been designed to help you plan your journey to Leeds and find out more about the different ways you can travel to our campus, including booking our free airport pick-up service from Leeds Bradford and Manchester Airport. 

Arrival support

We know how tiring travelling can be and that’s why we offer arrival support services to help you have a smooth arrival in Leeds.  

Our arrival support services include:

  • a free airport pick-up service from Leeds Bradford Airport and Manchester Airport for new students arriving in Leeds for the first time. 
  • a free welcome food box to help you settle in during your first day in Leeds which also contains a UK SIM card. 

Please note you must be a new student who’s coming to Leeds for the first time to be able to book our arrival support services. 

University Buddy Scheme

Apply for the University Buddy Scheme to be matched with a new or current Leeds student before you arrive, or at any point during your time at the University. The University Buddy Scheme offers a fantastic opportunity to meet someone new who shares similar interests to you, and you’ll also get invited to our exclusive programme of buddy social events. 

International families

Leeds has plenty to offer families including great schools, facilities and activities. Check our pages for international families to find out more about applying for schools, arranging childcare, ways to meet other parents and discover our family-friendly campus. 

International disabled students 

The term “disabled” in the UK is a broad one and covers a variety of conditions, illnesses and impairments. You may not have previously considered yourself disabled in your home country.  But if you feel that you have a condition that may affect your learning at Leeds, you may be able to access support from the University. Find out more about support for disabled international students available or contact the Disability team at disability@leeds.ac.uk to discuss your circumstances.   

Your first weeks at Leeds

Complete start-up processes

From registering as a student, to collecting your biometric residence permit visa documents and attending orientation briefings, find out more about start-up processes that you will need to complete in your first weeks at Leeds.   

International Orientation

International Orientation offers a week-long programme of social events, tours and talks to help you feel at home in Leeds, meet new people and make friends. Our 2023 International Orientation programme will take place from Monday 18 September until Friday 22 September. 

Global Community

Joining the University of Leeds means you are part of a diverse and culturally rich community, including the wider communities of our city. Get the most out of your time in Leeds by taking part in our range of Global Community activities

Our Global Café events are for everyone from everywhere. A weekly opportunity for students and postgraduate researchers to meet new people, relax with friends, have great conversations, and enjoy free refreshments.

Meet people and get involved

Studying at university is more than a time to grow academically. It's a time for meeting new friends, growing as a person and discover new ways of living. Find out more about the many opportunities you have for meeting people and getting involved

Your finances 

Budgeting and cost of living  

To avoid financial difficulties and make sure you have enough money to support yourself (and any family with you) throughout your studies, you’ll need to know what costs to expect.

  • Visit our Cost of living hub for tips on how to budget, save money and financial support that’s available.

Paying your fees 

Find out how to pay your fees safely with an online card payment or by using Flywire to pay by bank transfer. Don’t use third party agents to transfer payments to the University as this significantly increases your risk of being exposed to financial crime.

Protect yourself from fraud and scams

Each year some international students are tricked by criminals pretending to be from an official authority in the UK or their home country, and they lose significant amounts of money. Check our guidance on protecting yourself from fraud and scams

Money for when you arrive 

It may take some time to open a UK bank account. Make sure you’re prepared and can access money for your first few weeks at Leeds.

Opening a bank account 

Opening a bank account in the UK is not compulsory. However, there are benefits to opening a UK bank account, such as not paying transaction fees for cash withdrawals or bank transfers. Read more about how to open a bank account in the UK, find out about digital and high street banking options and the different bank accounts available for international students.  

Health care in the UK 

Your health entitlements and health insurance

Registering with a doctor and a dentist can take some so it’s important that you do this as soon as possible when you arrive in Leeds. Our healthcare pages will give you information about the UK health system, what healthcare will be free and what you will need to pay for depending on your visa status. 

All international students are recommended to take out health insurance, but this is also essential if you have a visa for less than six months. 

Help and advice 

Have a question but don’t know who to contact? Contact the Student Information Service team and they will put you in touch with the right team at the University who can help you find the answer.

Working during study 

Work and your visa 

Depending on how much time you need to dedicate to your studies, you may be able to work while in the UK. However, this may not always be possible. Whether you can work in the UK will also depend on your visa status. Make sure to check whether your visa allows you to work during your studies. Find out more about work and your visa.

Jobs and work experience

The University of Leeds Careers service has useful information about finding a job and work experience. With a team of career experts and student peer support assistants, the Careers team can help you find out more about work, placements and graduate work opportunities. 

Help, support and advice    

Student Visa Advice service   

Our Student Visa advisers provide student visa and immigration advice to support you when you’re preparing to come to Leeds and throughout your degree. 

Link to Leeds  

Talk to our current students to help you prepare for your studies at Leeds through Link to Leeds. Our ambassadors have written a range of blogs about their experience studying with us and you can contact them via email, attend live events or chat to them via the website.

Pre-departure briefings 

We hold informative online and in person briefing sessions for international students to help you prepare for your time at Leeds. Invitations to these events will be sent to you via email. Online events will also be listed on our Link to Leeds event page

Overseas offices 

We have overseas offices in China, India, Malaysia and Nigeria that can offer you advice and help with your preparation to study at Leeds. 

Student Information Service

Our Student Information Service is your first point of contact for any questions you might have. Our friendly teams can help you with questions about start-up processes and all other aspects of your university journey.

English language support 

We provide free English language workshops and consultations that you can fit around your studies to help you develop your academic language skills during your degree. Our Language Zone also has resources and activities for practising and developing English for everyday life as well as academic situations.