Challenges That First-Time International Students Face in the UK

Challenges That First-Time International Students Face in the UK

Challenges That First-Time International Students Face in the UK

The international appeal of the UK comes from many things. It offers premium education with world-class universities. Most international students can also enjoy a high quality of life.

But studying in the UK won’t be easy, especially for first-time international students. They’re the ones most vulnerable to big challenges. And their struggles are difficult to overcome unless addressed early.

If you’re studying in the UK for the first time, you must take note of these challenges to prepare. Read on to discover these challenges so you can get over them as soon as possible:

Financial Challenges

It’s no secret that studying in the UK comes with a steep price. This is why most students struggle with study and living expenses in the UK.

With the promise of bright life, financial planning often becomes an afterthought. In addition to large expenses, poor money management can also weigh you down.

Fortunately, you can remove financial challenges from the picture in various ways. You apply for scholarships or take a part-time job for a stream of income. 

Also, don’t neglect the power of student discount cards in the UK. You’ll realize their benefits more in the long run.


Homesickness is common among first-time international students in the UK. Being far away from their loved ones is a challenging course to take.

To combat homesickness, most UK universities offer counseling services. You can also reach out to private organizations and seek their services.

If you find yourself feeling homesick, it’s necessary to recognize that it’s normal. But you shouldn’t let it take over your life while in the UK.

Language Barriers

Even if English is your first language, you may still encounter communication challenges. Apart from the British accent, some students also struggle with word variety. For example, an elevator is called a “lift” in the UK. You may find it especially challenging if you’re used to American English.

Language barriers can also extend in an academic setting. So it’s important to deal with them correctly.

You can read our guide on how to overcome language barriers to get started. Also, remember to be confident when speaking to others to practice English better.

Culture Shock

Adapting to the UK environment is challenging, often leading to culture shock. This experience happens when a person struggles in an unfamiliar place.

Cultural shock is normal and natural. But due to the disorienting experience, can lead to psychological and emotional difficulties.

Once you’ve landed in the UK, watch out for common symptoms of culture shock. See our guide on how to cope with culture shock too so you can overcome this experience. 

You can also contact counseling services to manage culture shock. Remember to get in touch with your loved ones too once you start experiencing it.

First-time international students in the UK often experience challenges that make them struggle after moving. It’s best to know these challenges so first-time international students will know how to deal with them. For more content related to studying in the UK, check out our blogs here at MSM Unify.


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