Before You Pack

Immigration

Your first arrival in the UK

IIM Bedford have appointed professional advisers in this area. To speak directly with one of our dedicated staff, please email info@iimbedford.co.uk stating day and time most suitable for you, and they will call you back.

The UK offers a warm welcome to overseas students. However, the UK authorities need to make sure that anyone entering the UK is coming for legitimate reasons. For this reason, you may find that immigration control at your port of entry can be rigorous, and may result in a considerable delay at the end of your journey, especially during busy periods (like the start of term).To assist the immigration officials, keep all your documents in your hand luggage and be prepared to wait patiently.

Non EU nationals may be required to show additional documents to the Immigration Officer, so make sure you have the following documents in your hand luggage:

  • Valid passport (with entry clearance)
  • Unconditional offer letter
  • Evidence of funding – scholarship, personal or family resources, confirmation of sponsorship
  • A recent medical report including x-ray results.
  • You may be asked questions about yourself, including where you will be staying and why you are coming to the UK – don’t worry, as these questions are routine.

If you experience any problems, call the College during office hours, or ask to speak to a representative from the Immigration Advisory Service.

Luggage

After you have passed through passport control, you will need to collect your luggage. Luggage will be placed on a carousel with your flight number on it.

If your luggage does not arrive at the airport at the same time you do – don’t panic. Go to the luggage enquires/helpdesk and tell a member of staff that your luggage has not arrived. You must do this before you leave the airport. After the staff have asked you a few questions about your luggage and UK address, they will give you a reference number and contact details to help you find your lost luggage – keep these details safe.

Customs

There are strict laws governing what you can bring into the country. These include laws on bringing in meat, fish, milk and any products derived from them, such as dried food flavourings. Customs officials may stop any passenger and ask them to open their suitcases to check for prohibited items.

It is illegal to bring drugs (apart from prescribed medication) and animals into the UK. The penalties if you are caught are severe.