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What to bring to university

Watch our Accommodation playlist to find out more about living in student accommodation. 

The Fresh List

The Fresh List is twelve mood-boosting books to help you with the transition into your first year. The list was created by students as one of our Grand Challenges projects and books are available from the university library.

Your finances

Before you arrive

Before you arrive

Before you arrive

There are certain things you need to do before you come to university to make sure everything runs smoothly. Some are essential, some advisable and some just for international students.

All students

Essential tasks

We will send you several important emails to help you prepare for university. Please check your email account regularly and make sure to check your junk folder if you can’t find them. Here are some of the emails you will receive and when to look for them:

  • ‘Preparing for university’ emails – three emails that guide you through everything you need to do before you get here.
  • 'Welcome to the University of Exeter. Important Next Steps' - this will contain your student number, information on how to activate your IT account and registration information.
  • 'Your Academic Induction'.

Your UniCard is your University ID card and gives you access to the library, NUS discount, printing, electronic resources, buildings on campus and lots more.

You can apply for your UniCard once your place at Exeter is confirmed and you have received your official welcome email with the subject line: “Welcome to the University of Exeter: Important Next Steps.” 

Submit your application by Monday 9 September to ensure your card is ready for collection in Welcome Week.

If your place has been confirmed, you will be prompted activate your IT account in your welcome email: Welcome to the University of Exeter: Important Next Steps.

You need to do this before you can complete online registration. You will be allocated a student username, password and university email address.

You will need to register at the start of every academic year that you study here. University registration is the process by which you agree to the University’s current regulations. Visit the Student Registration web page for further information.

You will receive information on how to register in your Welcome to the University of Exeter: Important Next Steps email. 

To register:

  • Make sure you have activated your IT account
  • Log in to the Student Record System using your short username and password
  • If you have been cleared to register you will see a red box titled 'Welcome to online registration'. Click on 'Register Now', then follow the instructions on screen.

International students

If you are a non-UK national and have not been cleared to register you will not be able to complete online registration until you have attended International Student Clearance (more information on how to do this will be in your Welcome email).

You can pay your fees at any time by visiting our ‘Make a payment’ webpage. All payments are online via Debit/Credit Card or International Bank Transfer. You can also check your recent transactions and balance via your online statement.

Postgraduate taught students (i.e. MSc, MA or MBA) must pay their tuition fee deposit in order to confirm that they would like to accept their place at Exeter. If this applies to you, information on how to pay will be in your offer email. 

Please visit our Student Finance pages for payment deadlines and further student financial information

MyExeter provides all students with personalised information to get the most from your life and studies at the University of Exeter. You can access the app via MyExeter.

We will be sending you information about your pre arrival Academic Induction in Your Academic Induction email. This online course will help you learn more about your new university, your course, connect with your classmates and help with your transition to university.

The University has a range of accommodation available - please visit the Accommodation site for details.

What to bring with you

Deciding what to pack for university can be hard, especially if you have limited luggage space. If you are living in university accommodation, check the accommodation websites (links above) to see what is included in your room or flat, and download a moving in checklist below.

For students from outside of the UK, we have some helpful suggestions in the International Students Guide.

And remember, you'll be able to buy anything you've forgotten locally or online.

We strongly encourage you to arrive in Exeter in time for Welcome Week (starting Monday 16 September 2024) to make the most of the activities that are planned to help you settle into life at the university. You must arrive at the University and complete online registration by Friday 4 October 2024.

If your travel is delayed and you are not able to arrive at the university before this date, you should complete a late start request form, which will be available here shortly, if you are an undergraduate or postgraduate taught student. Postgraduate research students should contact

If you are a non-UK national then you must ensure that you arrive in Exeter in time to complete International Student Clearance and register by Friday 4 October 2024.

Advisable tasks

While you are a student we strongly recommend you register with a doctors' surgery near your accommodation. This will provide you with your unique NHS number. You are still able to see your home doctors' surgery as a temporary patient outside term time but we recommend your main surgery is at University.

Exeter-based students

If you are based on the Streatham campus you should register with the Student Health Centre online before you get here. Additional information on the services can be found on the Health Centre homepage.

If you will be studying at St Luke's or living at Rowancroft, we recommend you register with The Heavitree Practice

Penryn-based students

The Penryn Surgery is available for students five days a week during term time and we strongly recommend you register with them once you know your term-time address. There is an on-campus provision, but the doctors often consult with students either by phone or in person from the main surgery in Penryn.  

If you will be living in Falmouth, The Compass team will have details about other local doctor surgeries in Falmouth.


Wherever possible, it is recommended that all students under the age of 25 receive the Meningitis ACWY vaccine before coming to university and you should also ensure you have had two doses of the Measles Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccination before you join us. If you have not received these, or are unsure, we suggest discussing this with your doctor. International students should discuss with their doctor in their home country what vaccinations are recommended for living in the UK.

Before you start university, it's important to consider the advice, information and support available to you if you experience any of the following:

  • Specific learning difficulty
  • Mental Health difficulty for at least a year
  • Physical disability
  • A long-term medical condition

In some instances it is essential that we make arrangements for elements of your support before you arrive, for example if you require specific support and equipment to be in place when you start, or if you need adjustments to your accommodation or exams.

Exeter-based students

If you are based at our Exeter campuses, please visit our advice and support pages and complete the prospective student form if you think you will require support.

Penryn-based students

If you are based at our Penryn campus, please visit the Accessibility information webpages.

You can contact Student Services at any point during your studies plus you can find further information including wellbeing resources on our support and wellbeing pages.

Exeter-based students

At our Exeter campuses the Student Information Desk (SID) team are your first point of contact for non-academic support including accommodation, fees and funding, graduation, international student support, letters and transcripts and certificates.  Once you have activated your Exeter IT account you should contact SID by logging enquiries directly in the SID Online portal. A full guide to logging enquiries including a handy video can be found here. 

Visit the Support and services pages to find out about support available to you at university. You might like to watch our 'introducing support' videos too. 

Cornwall-based students

In Cornwall, The Compass Helpdesk is your first point of contact for enquiries about any aspect of student life, whether you have a quick query or require specialist support. Call in at The Compass Helpdesk, level 1 of Penryn Library, Exchange Building, phone 01326 370460 or visit How Can We Help You.

For queries related to your academic programme of study, contact Penryn Info Point.

Peter Lanyon Building, Penryn, 01326 371800 or email

Visit the Support and services pages to find out about support available to you at university.

We know you may be feeling anxious about the rising cost of living, and managing your money at University. We have lots of information and advice to help you manage your finances, and we have support available if you’re struggling.

Visit our Cost of Living advice pages.

These pages will be updated regularly with practical help and opportunities where we can help lessen the impact of rising costs on our students.

We actively discourage students from bringing cars to our campuses, or the surrounding residential areas. 

Exeter-based students

Finding parking spaces around our Exeter campuses is a particular challenge and large sections of the city operate a residents’ parking zone scheme. We strongly advise you not to bring a car. You can find out more about sustainable travel to our campuses on these webpages.

Visit our Car Parking web pages.

Also see: Full parking regulations.

Advice is available from the Main Reception on 01392 72 5678.

Cornwall-based students

All visitors to the Penryn Campus are encouraged to use alternative methods of transport and avoid driving wherever possible. Please see the Travel and Transport page for information about car parking, permit application and other methods of travel at the Penryn Campus.

Our visit pages include information on travel and parking on Truro Campus and Penryn Campus.

For parking queries at Penryn Campus, please email

Peer Support matches new students with “Mentors”, students in higher years with similar backgrounds, disciplines or experiences. Mentors are an informal point of contact who can help you during your transition to university. If you would like to be matched with a Mentor, browse our available programmes and see how to sign up.

International students

Our International Student Support team are dedicated to helping you adjust to life in the UK and offer advice on immigration, transition and pastoral issues. 

Additional tasks for international students

As well as the tasks listed above, most international students will also need to complete additional tasks:

Studying in another country is exciting but can also be challenging, so it is sensible to prepare for studying and living in a new culture. See our dedicated webpages and International Student Guide to help you prepare and plan for your study abroad experience.

If you are a non-UK national you will need some kind of permission to stay and study in the UK. Most students will need to apply for a Student visa, while some will be eligible for a Visitor visa and some students will already have permission under a different route. See our dedicated immigration pages for details. 

Unless you are a permanent resident in the UK, you must have healthcare cover in place whilst living in the UK.

For students studying on a Student visa, including EEA and Swiss nationals,  this will be the Immigration Health Surcharge which is paid during the visa application process. For further information click here

EEA and Swiss students may also be covered with a valid EHIC. This is a complex area of legislation so we would recommend you read detailed information about your particular situation on our EU Healthcare page.

Check if it is a condition of your visa to undergo tuberculosis (TB) screening, which is mandatory in some countries.

You cannot open a UK bank account until you are in the UK and have registered on a programme of full-time study. We suggest you bring a small amount of cash and a cash credit card/digital bank account with you to buy food and other essential items while you wait as many retailers are currently not taking cash. We would strongly suggest you bring an international credit card to use whilst you open a bank account. Find out more about opening a UK bank account.

All University of Exeter campuses are cashless therefore you will need to ensure you are able to purchase items by card on and off campus until you are able to open a bank account. See our advice on bank accounts here. We recommend obtaining a pre-paid travel card prior to your travel, the Caxton Currency card is a favoured option and available to set-up online.

We can help you improve your English language skills to get the best out of your studies. Find out more here.

Global Chums is a student mentoring scheme designed to answer questions when you arrive, help you settle into campus life quickly, and provide you with some familiar faces around campus. Apply for a Global Chum mentor to help you settle in when you arrive. 

When you have firmly accepted your offer to study at the University of Exeter you can start to research your travel options. 

We run our Airport Collection Service from Heathrow.

If our scheduled coaches do not meet your arrival time, you will find information on how to travel to campus from major airports on our planning your travel to University webpage

We recommend that you think about travelling to Bristol or Exeter Airports if you are able, as transfer times to the University are significantly shorter and travel through customs easier. Detailed information about travelling to our campuses can be found here.