Travelling to UCB

We advise you to arrive at the University on Arrival Weekend on Saturday 25 or Sunday 26 January.

Before you travel: Checklist

  1. Your passport and visa: Make sure you have a valid passport and a valid visa
  2. Money: As it can take several weeks to open a UK bank account, you need to bring enough money to cover your initial expenses
  3. Your official documents: Take photocopies of your important documents (passport, visa etc.) in case you lose them in transit or whilst in the UK, and keep these copies in a safe place.
  4. Your accommodation: If you plan to stay in university accommodation, make sure you apply and pay your deposit by the date outlined in your contract.
  5. Insurance: Make arrangements to take out insurance for your personal belongings. This is best done before you leave for the UK to cover your journey and the first few days in Birmingham
  6. Travel to Birmingham: Plan how you will travel from your port of arrival in the UK to your accommodation in Birmingham. Check out details of our Airport Meet and Greet service        
  7. Specific support: Make sure you inform the Disability Support Service at UCB if you are likely to require any specific support or arrangements because of a disability. Alternatively, contact
  8. It may be beneficial to pre-order bedding and kitchen equipment before you arrive at UCB. This can be done via our partner UniKitOut using discount code UCB10. 

Travel insurance

Your health insurance will likely not cover any damage or loss of belongings during your travel to and stay in Birmingham. We strongly advise you to insure your most precious and expensive belongings, such as laptops and other electronic products. Travel insurance will also cover any loss of important documents. Your travel insurance may also cover emergency medical expenses and medical evacuation. Do a search and compare the benefits to see how they complement your health insurance abroad. If you do bring your laptop, it is important you insure it against damage or theft. Never leave your belongings unattended.

Airport meet and greet

If you plan to arrive at Birmingham Airport, you can register with the airport meet and greet service. This is a welcome service offered by our International Office who will meet you on arrival, escort you to pre-arranged transportation and take you to your halls of residence, or to the University campus if you prefer. They will also help you with any problems and queries. This service is free of charge – please register here airport meet and greet.

Directions to UCB

The closest airport to UCB is Birmingham Airport. We strongly recommend that you aim to fly into Birmingham Airport as Gatwick and Heathrow are extremely busy and can be overwhelming for those new to the UK.

If you choose not to use UCBs airport meet and greet service, then there are two options for getting to UCB from the airport. Please read the following information to help you plan your journey to our campuses:

  • Option 1: Taxi - signs at the airport will show you where you can get a taxi. These are approximately £25 - £30 and take about 30 minutes. This is the quickest way to get to the campus from the airport and is recommended if you are arriving late in the evening or if you have heavy luggage.
  • Option 2: Train – costs approximately £5, takes around 15 - 20 minutes The 'Air Rail Link' is a free monorail service between the Airport and Birmingham International train station. You can board the Air Rail Link from the second floor of the Terminal 1 Departures area at the airport. The Air Rail Link takes two minutes to get to Birmingham International train station and operates between 05:15am and 02:00am daily. You then need to take a train to Birmingham New Street station. Once you are at the train station, get a taxi to your accommodation (more convenient, especially with heavy luggage, than walking).

Here are directions to all areas of UCB