Moving to the UK: a Checklist

You’ve decided to start a new life working or studying in the UK. But, before getting on the plane, what do you need to do? Here’s our must-read checklist for moving to the UK and managing your money.

1. Research the cost of living

Before arriving in the UK, it’s worth preparing yourself for the cost of living, especially if you’re moving to an expensive area like London. Find out how much it costs to rent a house, buy a meal or use public transport and make sure your savings will cover the cost of living while you search for a job.

2. Apply for your visa

To move to the UK from a country outside of the EU, you’ll need to apply for a visa. The type of visa you need will depend on how long you’re staying and whether you’re planning to work, study or just travel.

3. Get your documents together

Before travelling, make sure you have all your important documents ready. Check the dates on your passport and, if it’s due to run out while you’re in the UK or up to three months after your visit, apply for a new one. It’s also worth taking your driving licence, certificates proving your qualifications, and qualifications and references from your last/ current employer.

4. Look for jobs

If you can, start researching jobs before you leave for the UK. Use online job boards to search and apply for positions or come up with a plan of action for when you arrive. If your visa says you’re prohibited from working, you’ll need to get a separate work permit, which your employer will arrange.  You’ll also need to apply for a National Insurance card.

5. Find somewhere to live

Start by choosing where in the UK you would like to live. Do you want to be in London or another major city such as Birmingham or Manchester? If you’re looking for employment in a specific industry, make sure there are plenty of opportunities in the area you’re moving to. Once you’ve chosen a town or city, do some research into renting or buying a home.

6. Open a bank account

To rent a home and pay your bills, you’ll need a UK bank account. Opening an account with a high street bank can be a complicated and lengthy process. At Arro, we make it a bit easier. With Arro Early Access you’ll get a personal account with a Mastercard® debit card, so you can pay rent, receive your salary and withdraw cash for free. There are no credit checks or hidden fees and you’ll get instant access to your account after filling out a short application form.

7. Make provisions for your family

Once you’ve moved to the UK, you’ll need to apply for a place at a local school for your children if they’re between 5 and 16 years old. Make sure you register your whole family with the NHS to receive healthcare and apply for a European Health Insurance Card.

8. Arrange your bills

When you’re in your new home, contact your electricity and gas provider to set up an account. You’ll also need to register for council tax. To make regular payments, set up direct debits from your Arro Early Access account.

9. Ask plenty of questions

If in doubt, ask for help. There are lots of resources online, so use them to help prepare for the big move. For any questions about opening an account in the UK, get in touch with our team at Arro.