An opportunity to study abroad in the UK could be life-changing if maximized. Yearly, African students in their tens of thousands travel abroad to pursue better education and quality of life, and the UK is a favorite destination for many.
Our geographical proximity to the United kingdom counts amongst the reasons for the location preference by many African students. And the benefits of studying in this great island country are enormous, leaving pronounced impacts on the academic, socio-cultural, and economic strength of everyone who walks through it.
Owing to the rampant benefits of studying abroad in the UK, countless students have had to trade their relationship with loved ones for it, sacrificing affairs of the heart for academic and career ambitions.
International education demands conscientious planning, material resources, and other personal sacrifices. However, the companionship of a loved one has never had to be an opportunity cost for academic and career goals, primarily when being pursued in the United Kingdom.
Over the years, the UK government and tertiary institutions have made flexible positions available for international students, including those who would love to live and work with a loved one while studying.
Before discussing these provisions and the requisite arrangements, let’s first consider some benefits of traveling with a loved one to study abroad in the UK.
Study abroad in the UK – Benefits of traveling with your loved one
Traveling alone to the UK for studies would require far fewer material resources than traveling with a partner. However, the benefits of exploring this lofty pursuit with a loved one by your side are simply profound, expansive, and of course, quite fulfilling. Some of them include:
A sustained relationship
Technology and social media have significantly enhanced virtual communication, and most people rely on them to interact with loved ones while abroad. However, physical presence remains the ideal way of interacting with a loved one while growing and sustaining your relationship. Traveling with your loved one would always keep you two closer, more cordial, and endearing to each other.
Every student needs a constant dose of moral support, even while studying in the UK. Learning, working, and living in an entirely new environment, while adapting could be overwhelming.
However, traveling with a loved one would go a long way to sustain any student’s confidence, enthusiasm, and drive on rocky days.
International students are allowed to work for 20 hours weekly during term time while their dependents (over 16) are allowed to work full time.
Although most African students in the UK are financially stable and have little or no interest in the extra income these jobs afford, others largely depend on them for groceries and other academic needs.
Hence, traveling with a partner willing to work could go a long way to provide the income needed to offset these basic needs.
An adventurous experience & a lifetime opportunity for your loved one
One of the most pronounced benefits of living in the UK is socio-cultural exposure. Experiencing the diversity, beauty, and quality of life alone in the UK could be fun, but doing it with a loved one would be amazing and adventurous.
Lifetime experiences, international connections, a world-class work experience, and many more are equally included in the “traveling to study in the UK with a loved one” package.
Requirements for traveling with a loved one to study in the UK
As an African student intending to travel to the UK for studies with a dependent-loved one, you must first meet some criteria and make specific arrangements.
Some of which include:
Length of program
Only students who have applied for programs that require a minimum of 9 months are allowed to accommodate a dependent while studying. Hence, you must have a tier 4 study visa and be looking for 36 weeks or more for your loved one(s) to be considered. Also, only postgraduate students are allowed to have dependents.
Proof of identity
A dependant must provide proof of identity and proof of relationship with the student. Though only immediate family members are generally allowed, an unmarried partner could be considered dependent.
Dependents over 16 are allowed to work for an unlimited time. Yet, if you intend to travel with a loved one, proof of financial support is among the essential documents submitted during a visa application.
Dependents of students in London are expected to provide proof of £845 a month, while those in other cities are allowed with proof of £680 monthly as financial support.
Cost of living
According to a world population review, the UK is rated as the 12th most expensive country. So before traveling with a loved one, ensure that finances or prospective sources of income are correctly sorted.
Studying abroad in the UK is a comprehensive experience, promising quality education, better standard of living, outstanding work experience, a diverse human network, and many more.
Though you could do this alone while your partner cheers from home, traveling with your loved one to study abroad in the UK could further satisfy your emotional, moral and financial needs while affording your loved one a lifetime experience.