Bringing dependants to the UK
Bringing your family to the UK is a big undertaking and it’s important you make an informed decision on whether moving to the UK is the right choice for you and your family.
Important information regarding accommodation
- The University does not have any family accommodation. There is very limited family accommodation in Worcester and it is expensive
- Do not arrive with your family. Come on your own and start your studies
- When you have found accommodation for your family, then arrange for them to join you
Below is some relevant information about visas, accommodation, schooling/childcare and other topics.
If you do decide to have your family to stay with you, you will need to make very careful plans and we will require additional information from you. You will find details about this information and guidance on how to submit it at the end of this message.
Helpful information for students bringing dependants
Before bringing your dependants to the UK, ensure:
- You have read the information on immigration permission for family and supporting your dependants in the UK and made the required arrangements.
- You have arranged suitable housing for your dependants from the day you will arrive (e.g., an apartment where more than one person is allowed to live)
- You have someone who can reliably care for your child while you are studying (e.g., a partner or hired child carer/nursery or school place)
- You can support your dependants financially – or they are able and permitted to support themselves – throughout your studies. Worcester has no specific financial support available for parents.
You may find the following websites helpful:
Housing for students with families
You are responsible for finding accommodation for you and your family.
It is very important for you to know that:
- There is no on-campus accommodation available at the University of Worcester for families
- The rental market for family accommodation in Worcester is severely restricted and expensive. You should take this into consideration when deciding whether to accept an offer from the University of Worcester
- We strongly recommend that you wait until you have found suitable accommodation before you bring your family to join you in Worcester
- You should expect to pay around £800 - £900 per month for family accommodation in Worcester or nearby towns.
- Family accommodation close to the campus, or to schools, is particularly limited and is likely to be more expensive.
- You may be able to find more affordable accommodation in areas which are 20-30min bus/train ride away. We have received excellent feedback from international students who chose to live in Kidderminster, Droitwich, Malvern, Pershore and Hereford and we strongly encourage you to consider these locations. You may find the National Rail and First Bus pages useful to estimate travel times. If you would like further guidance on locations, please get in touch with us.
- Please remember, you must live within a reasonable distance from campus so that you are able to attend all face-to-face sessions. We may have to stop sponsoring you under the conditions of your student visa if you cannot attend face-to-face sessions.
- You must disclose all relevant details to letting agents or landlords when searching for accommodation. For example, you must tell them if children will live in the property because some properties are not suitable for younger children.
- In most cases you will be asked to pay rent upfront for at least 3 months, and in some cases up to 12 months. If you cannot do this, you will be asked to provide a UK-based guarantor. There are many companies which offer this service; make sure you check their website for the terms of service and that the landlord will accept them before applying with guarantors.
- Landlords are not likely to accept offers to pay less than the advertised rent.
Schooling and childcare
Obtaining a dependant visa for your child will be based on confirmation by you that there will be suitable arrangements for your child’s care and accommodation in the UK; these arrangements must comply with relevant UK Government legislation.
Remember that you must attend classes and your attendance will be monitored to meet the conditions of your sponsorship.
Please also note that you must not bring your child to campus while studying. Children of any age are not permitted in classrooms or other teaching spaces and they cannot be left unattended on campus.
The best way of caring for children under the age of five is for you and your partner to organise your study and free time to ensure that you personally meet the needs of your child(ren). Childcare for children under five is expensive and places are limited.
If you must pay for childcare for your child, you should expect to pay upwards of £200 per week and up to £1400 per month. The NCT website has helpful information about the average costs of childcare in the UK.
Children between the ages of 5 and 16 must attend school.
If your children are aged between 5 and 16, they can attend primary and secondary state schools in the UK as long as they are here as your dependants. You will not have to pay for this. However, schools may sometimes refuse places to children if they consider their stay in the UK will be too short, or if the schools have no free places.
To make a valid application for a school place, you need to have secured your permanent accommodation in the UK (i.e., where you are going to live for all or the majority of your course).
If you have more than one child, the lack of school spaces in the UK may mean that it is not possible for all of your children to attend the same school, so you will need to carefully consider how you will manage transport and getting your children to and from schools in multiple locations.
Working and earning money
Part time work
A student visa issued for full-time degree level studies allows you to work for a maximum of 20 hours per week during term-time. This is a maximum of 20 hours in total in any one week, including paid or unpaid work and for one or more organisation. The 20 hours cannot be averaged over a longer period. A 'week' is defined by the Home Office as a period of 7 days beginning with a Monday. This also includes both paid and unpaid work.
Although you may work 20 hours, you should think carefully about your studies and ensure that you have the energy, time and commitment to fully focus on your academic efforts.
Most international students choose to open a bank account in the UK. You won’t be able to do this immediately, so you should think about how much money you will need for the first couple of weeks, particularly if your family is joining and you will be supporting them. Most shops in the UK accept Visa and Mastercard, so you may be able to use your bank cards from your home country until you have set up your UK account, although you should check what the charges and exchange rates are.
You can find some useful information about UK bank accounts on the UKCISA student banking blog and Save the Student: Top UK bank accounts for international students, which includes the banks with the lowest international transfer fees.
The British Council money and budgeting website also has useful information to help with this and lots of other tips about budgeting, cost of living and banking in the UK.
Think very carefully about whether bringing your family is the right decision for you and for them.
If you do decide to bring them, we strongly recommend that you should arrive first and secure suitable accommodation for your family before bringing them to join you.
If you have applied to study at the University of Worcester and have indicated on your pre-arrival questionnaire that your family is arriving at the same time as you, we will be in touch with you to check that you have made suitable arrangements for them. This is so that we can be assured that you will be ready to start your studies. If you have any questions, please get in touch with the International Experience team via CAS Shield.