Questions international students might ask before moving to Manchester to study

Whitworth Building University of Manchester
  • What kind of clothes should I bring?

Good question. You can have four seasons in one day in Manchester. English weather is very changeable so it’s a good idea to wear layers as one minute you are cold but then when you go indoors you can get too hot when the heating is on. In the winter you’ll need a nice warm, waterproof coat and whatever you do don’t forget your umbrella, brolly for short. As Manchester is an easy city to explore on foot comfortable, comfy (for short) shoes are a must. There’s nothing worse than your feet killing you!

  • Apart from English, are there any other official languages?

English is the official language of England. Mancunian is the official language of Manchester. Manchester is a very diverse city so don’t be surprised to hear a wide variety of languages being spoken when you are out and about. This diversity is what makes Manchester such an interesting place to live, work and study in.

  • Are there embassies in Manchester?

You should check this before departure. Most embassies are in London but a number of countries have them in Manchester too.

  • What’s the best way to get to the city centre from the airport?

There are a number of public transport options, buses, trains, trams, and of course taxis.

  • Once in Manchester is there a market where I can buy international food?

There are many large supermarkets in Manchester selling international food as well as The Arndale Market, you can buy Chinese ingredients in Chinatown. Halal products in Rusholme, Turkish ingredients in Longsight, Japanese ingredients and local products at Bury Market outside the city. The diverse population means that you can probably find almost any type of food without going too far. In addition, if you have any food allergies or intolerances you can find vegan products and gluten free products in many outlets.

  • What’s the best way to get around the city?

The centre of Manchester is quite compact which means that walking is a great option. You can get your daily steps in and appreciate the things around you, you may discover a park or shop that you wouldn’t have otherwise noticed. There are a number of free buses that ferry people around the city centre, regular buses, trams & private taxis. Cycling is another option. Many university students cycle to their lectures and around the campus. There are now special cycle lanes on Oxford Road and places where you can rent and buy bikes. Cycling is another great way to exercise and is more sustainable.

  • Should I be aware of robbers?

We should all take responsibility for our belongings and personal safety. Sometimes when we are in another country we are not as vigilant as we would be in our own surroundings. Don’t leave your personal belongings unattended, for example, don’t leave your phone or laptop on a table in a cafe and then go to the toilet. It may not be there when you return. Do not carry large amounts of cash, it is not really necessary as most places accept contactless payments now. Be aware of your surroundings, do not stand at a bus stop on your phone with headphones on not paying attention to what is going on around you. Do not leave your bicycle unlocked, try and find a bike shed or secure place to leave it locked up. Make sure you know how to contact the police and the emergency services Manchester. In an emergency ring 999.

  • How many universities are there?

There are 3, The University of Manchester, which includes the Alliance Business School, and UMIST, Manchester Metropolitan University and The University of Salford.

 Are the Mancunian people nice to international students/visitors?

Of course, Mancunians are a friendly welcoming bunch and we love to chat and meet people from all over the world and different backgrounds. The people are what makes Manchester great and who worked together to make Manchester the Northern Powerhouse.

Apart from English, are there any other language schools?

Yes. You can study other languages in Manchester if you have time. Spanish,  Chinese, Arabic, Japanese, Portuguese, French, German, Korean to name a few. There’s the Cervantes Institute for studying Spanish and the Confucius Institute for studying Chinese. Members of the public can also study a whole range of languages at The University of Manchester Language Centre. Visit the LEAP website to find out more


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