While London is a big city, it is also a safe city. International students and their parents often wonder how safe it is to study in another country, so here is some information and a few tips to keep you safe while studying in London.
Most international students will be staying in university halls of residence or private student accommodation when they come to studying in London. These are safe accommodation options for students as the buildings are managed by the universities or reputable private companies. Student accommodation blocks have secured entrances which can only be accessed with your student cards and 24 hour security personnel is on site. Find out more about student accommodation in London.
Your personal belongings
International students are advised to take out contents insurance. This ensures your valuable items, such as laptops and mobile phones, are ensured against theft. While university accommodation and campuses are generally regarded as very safe, content insurance provides peace of mind. Students should also avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Instead, you can get debit cards from your bank or pre-paid credit cards. Card payments are accepted widely across shops, restaurants, cinemas etc. in the UK.
Travelling to and from the UK
Your passport and visa are very important so you need to ensure they are in a safe place, ideally on your body, when you travel. When you are not travelling, keep your passport somewhere safe in your room. Remember to put a luggage tag on your suitcase and hand luggage and include your UK address on this to ensure it can be easily sent to you if it gets lost in transit.
Personal safety in London
London is regarded as a safe city, despite its size. Especially in central London, you can walk around with friends or on your own and feel safe. Of course, it is important to be aware of your surroundings and you should avoid walking alone at night in empty parts of the city. The London transport system operates throughout the day and night which makes it easy to get home safely at any time of the day. Security staff or transport police are available at all stations and you should report any unattended luggage or suspicious behaviour. Licensed taxi companies also operate in all parts of the city. Find out more about travelling in London.
Traffic safety in London
Finally, remember that in the UK cars drive on the left side of the road. This is different to many other countries in the world and visitors and students new to London need to take care when crossing the road. The roads are marked with 'look left' or 'look right' to help you cross safely. Many crossings also operate with traffic lights, so be sure to wait for the green light before crossing.
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