Hi there, I’m Joan. Welcome to another page of my diary, and on this page, I’m going to share with you details and requirements regarding applying for a family member to join you in the UK as promised in my last blog. I will also discuss some of the benefits you can enjoy as a postgraduate student living with your family in the UK.
From the moment you leave your family and the comfort of your home to study abroad, you might begin to feel lonely, sometimes even isolated. I had this concern during the early part of my postgraduate application and the process of having my family join me seemed complex for most countries. This concern influenced my decision to have my postgraduate studies in the UK instead because of its flexibility and easy transition process, including living with your family and working while studying.
The United Kingdom is one of the world’s most popular and best postgraduate study destinations. It offers unlimited opportunities to postgraduate students. You’ll usually need a visa for international students and this visa application will need to be sponsored by a university that has accepted you to study for a degree. As soon as your application is approved, you’ll get a Tier 4 student visa which comes with numerous benefits. Some of these benefits include having your family come over to the UK on dependant visas if you’re a full-time postgraduate student and your course is scheduled to last for at least 9 months or more. The processes for having your family over are very simple; you’ll need to provide evidence of your relationship (marriage certificate for your partner and birth certificate for your children), proof of funds to support themselves, and passport photographs. All of these can be done before or after you begin your postgraduate studies. In my case, I decided to come alone at first to enable me to concentrate on my studies and to settle in before bringing my family over.
Alongside the possibility of bringing your family over if you wish to, another benefit you stand to enjoy as a postgraduate student in the UK is that your children benefit from the free public primary and secondary school; yes, free education!
Applying for postgraduate studies in the UK also means your spouse can work full time once a work permit is issued, and the benefits don’t end there. If you ever worry about the extra bills that’ll come from bringing your family over, put those worries to rest as students in the UK are eligible to work part-time or full-time during the holidays, to support themselves.
There are very nice and affordable accommodations all around the UK and the University of Surrey provides campus accommodation for families, couples, and single. University campuses can be great fun and give you an opportunity to network – they’re the popular option for most first-year students. Sometimes, international students are placed together in halls, so you may be living with other people from your home country.
Otherwise, you can look for private accommodation off-campus. Bear in mind that prices for accommodation can vary hugely depending on the area you choose to live in and the location of your university, so you’ll need to research to get a feel for what area you want to live in and find the best housing within your budget.
I must say that deciding to do my master’s in the UK at the University of Surrey has been one of my best decisions. My family is all settled in, I was able to secure nice and affordable accommodation in a nearby town, and is so beautiful and safe!
Wishing all those who are contemplating and have applied success with your application.
See you in Surrey!