Our postgraduate students come to the UK from more than 65 different countries and contribute to a very diverse and vibrant community here at Fitzwilliam. Information on this page will be of specific interest as you prepare to travel to Cambridge to start your course. We also recommend reading the International Student Guide.
Information on visa collection arrangements for 2020-21
Following a successful visa application, most students will be issued an entry permit in their passport to allow travel to the UK. The visa, in the form of Biometric Residence permit (BRP) will need to be collected after arrival in the UK.
If you nominated (in your visa application) to collect your BRP card from the University
This will available for you to collect from the College. Cards will not be available until 2 October at the earliest. A member of the Graduate Team will email you when the card is ready. Collection will be from the Trust Room - ground floor on L staircase. If you are collecting your card from the College, you do not need to do this within 14 days of arrival, and if you are self-isolating must wait until after then. Your card will be kept safe for you.
You must bring your passport with you. We need to scan the passport. BRP cards cannot be issued until your Entry Clearance vignette and arrival into UK date stamp have been checked.
If you nominated (in your visa application) to collect your BRP card from the Post Office
You should aim to do this within 14 days if possible. If you are self-isolating you should do it as soon after your 14 day isolation period as possible.
The day after collection (or as soon as possible) please bring the BRP card together with your Passport, to the Trust Room (L staircase) for scanning. This is a requirement of the Tier 4 sponsorship.
The Trust Room will be open for collection of card and passport scanning - 9.00am-3.00pm from 28 September to 16 October 2020.
Other useful links
- Government page on UK visas
- Graduate Union | Cambridge University Students' Union (CUSU International)
- British Council | UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA)
Healthcare in the UK
The National Health Service (NHS) is the UK’s state healthcare system providing a wide range of health care services including appointments with a doctor, hospital treatment and dental care.
Tier 4 students - NHS surcharge
All those subject to immigration control and coming to the UK for 6 months or longer will pay an NHS surcharge as part of their visa application fee.
Students will be required to pay a health surcharge per year of leave granted on their visa under the immigration rules. The surcharge is also applied to Tier 4 dependants.
The surcharge entitles Tier 4 students to access free NHS care in the UK, including at the doctor's surgery (known as General Practitioner or GP), a Healthcare Centre or in a hospital. You may need to pay for dental and optical treatment as well as medicine prescribed by the doctor and collected from a pharmacy. You may also be charged for particularly expensive discretionary treatments.
Full Information is available on the International Students Website.
The latest information about EHIC cards and their validity following Brexit is on the University's website.
All students must register with a local GP (Doctor) so that they can access this service. Details on how to register will be available on arrival in Cambridge.
For further information on accessing healthcare in the UK:
If you are new to the UK, you will need to open a bank account. Many UK banks offer accounts tailored to the needs of international students. Banks can take several weeks to set up a new account, so you should open the account as long in advance as possible.
Your bank may ask you to supply a letter from Fitzwilliam College which confirms that you are a student with accommodation here. Letters of this type can be obtained from the Tutorial Office with a few days’ notice. Please use the student certification letter request form.
Latest information and updates from the University of Cambridge.
Pre-arrival and orientation information: practical guidance on coming to live and study in Cambridge, from an international student perspective.
Your responsibilities as a student sponsored by the University of Cambridge for a Tier 4 visa and guidance on protecting your immigration status in the UK.
Letters may take up to 7 days.