When it comes to choosing the right university for you, the degree you want to study will be an important factor, but you also need to think about the type of place you want to call home for the next few years. Not all university cities are created equal, and finding the right one for you will depend on what your personal preferences are
To get you started, here are some of the factors you should consider when choosing where you want to study:
The quality and reputation of each university itself is going to play a big part in deciding which city will be the right choice for you. Renowned for its academic excellence, and a top choice for high achievers, there are plenty of reasons why you might choose to study at Cambridge – if you’ve got what it takes to make it through the fiercely competitive application process.
But Cambridge isn’t your only option when it comes to finding a city that boasts a world-class institution. Start by looking at different university tables to find which ones rank the highest for your preferred degree, then compare the student-satisfaction scores and the graduate prospects across different cities.
Distance from Home
If you’re planning on visiting home during term time, you’ll want to look at a big city with good transport links and frequent services to your hometown. Keep in mind that the further away you are, the more it will cost you to travel back and forth.
University is the perfect opportunity for you to discover a new city, and if you’re not planning on frequent trips to visit friends and family, the sky’s the limit when it comes to picking the perfect place for you.
As an added bonus, if you’re studying further away from home, you’ll be able to avoid any short-notice visits from your parents. Any student can vouch for the fact that letting their mum and dad into the flat requires plenty of notice and tidying, so the further away you live, the more time you’ll have to prepare for their visit.
Rent, living costs, and the price of a pint will all vary depending on where you choose to live, with London having a less than stellar reputation when it comes to the cost of living. But if you do have your sights set on the capital, the benefits of city life and London’s vibrant culture will surely outweigh the costs, and you’ll be eligible for a higher maintenance loan to help make these costs more manageable.
If keeping costs down is an important factor for you, then Bath might be your top choice, having been voted the cheapest UK city for students in 2017. You could even consider commuting if you already live near a university and you don’t mind staying at home.
Let’s face it: decent nightlife comes part and parcel with the student experience, so the decision isn’t between cities that do or don’t have a busy student nightlife, but rather the ones that have the student nights that you’ll enjoy the most.
Cities like London may have the upper hand with swanky locations, but the North cannot be beaten for student nightlife. Newcastle, for example, reigns supreme with club-nights every day of the week, proving that Geordies’ reputations as party animals are well-earned.
Equally well-known for its nightlife with Canal Street, 5th Avenue, and Warehouse Project being favourites among students, Manchester combines Newcastle’s party-any-day-of-the-week attitude with indie club-nights and venues that wouldn’t look out-of-place in London’s swankier neighbourhoods, giving you the best of both worlds.
No two cities are the same when it comes to their cultures and lifestyles, and your time at university should be as fun as it is educational, so make sure to pick one that matches your personality.
Your current hobbies will play a big part in which city will be the best fit for you. If you’re a football fan, for example, you might be drawn to cities like Manchester or Liverpool, where you can regularly watch your favourite team. Nature lovers, however, might prefer somewhere like Cardiff or Edinburgh, both of which offer stunning views for weekend hikes and nature-walks.
Celebrating the 10th anniversary of being named the European Capital of Culture, Liverpool is undoubtedly the place for you if you’re looking to explore a city with a rich cultural history. Home to a UNESCO World Heritage waterfront, Tate Liverpool, and The Beatles, you’ll always be sure to find something to do on your days off.
Whether your idea of the perfect city is a vibrant music scene, proximity to green spaces, or a strong football culture, you’ll be sure to find something to match your interests.
Choosing the Right Accommodation
Now that you’ve picked the perfect city for you, it’s time to think about accommodation. With locations in 14 different cities, we’ve got plenty of amazing student rooms that can become your home away from home.