You will receive information and support for the followings things you need to do once you arrive:

  • Register and enrol at the university
  • Open a UK bank account
  • Register with a doctor
  • Register with the police (Police Registration is not applicable to everyone)
  • How to get an National Insurance Number

Part Time Work

It will be clearly started on your visa whether you are entitled to work and the hours you are permitted to do. Please contact the V.I.S.A. Team if you require clarification on this.

  • During term time you will be permitted to work 10/20 hours per week for paid work (as stated on your visa)
  • During University vacation time you are permitted to work full time hours for paid work. Please check with your School or refer to the Academic Calendar if you require clarification on this.
  • You must obtain a National Insurance Number to work in the UK

Faith and Belief Centre

GCU has a Faith and Belief Centre on campus which offers a dedicated space for students to fulfil their religious and spiritual needs. This space has full disabled access. The Centre comprises of two rooms which are normally dedicated as a Muslim prayer space, and a large multi-purpose room with a small kitchen which can be booked by any faith group for worship, meditation, social meetings and events or similar. The Centre also has washing facilities available. 


It is important to look after your health and wellbeing. While you adapt to the weather, food and customs of the UK, you need to make sure you look after yourself and seek help and advice if you need it. The immigration health surchage may apply.  Please see Immigration Health Surcharge for more information.

You will need to register with a doctor or ‘GP’ whilst you are here in the UK. GCU has links with a local doctor’s surgery called ‘Woodside Medical Centre’. The Campus Life Desk on Level 1 of the George Moore Building can give you further information on how to register with a GP. There will be lots of information available on how to register with a GP during the September Induction so look out for this. 

NHS has a 24-hour helpline that you can call if you are unwell and your GP’s surgery is closed: 111 or you can visit their website NHS 24.

In an emergency, 999 will provide you with ambulance, fire and police services. (Think about whether your situation counts as an emergency before you dial).

For further information visit the NHS website

Driving in the UK

You must be over 17 years old and have a valid driving license to drive in the UK. With your overseas driving licence or International Driving Permit, you are allowed to drive in the UK for twelve months. If you wish to apply for a British licence, you must do so within these twelve months. Try using the "DVLA's Driving in Great Britain" tool.

You are legally required to ensure that:

  • You have motor insurance covering you for the vehicle you are driving
  • The vehicle is roadworthy and has an MOT certificate
  • You carry your valid driving permit
  • You obey the laws of the UK and follow the Highway Code. In the UK, we drive on the left hand side of the road and all passengers must wear their seatbelt (crash helmets for motorcyclists). It is a serious offence to drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and to talk on your mobile phone whilst driving.

Useful sites

Register and enrol at the university

You are required to register with GCU when you arrive. You will be given a student ID card which you must carry with you at all times when on campus. 

Open a UK bank account

It is important to open a UK bank account as soon as you arrive in Glasgow. Santander is located on campus in the Glasgow School for Business and Society Centre for Executive Education and staff will be available during September Induction to assist you with opening a bank account. If you would like to use another UK bank, these can be found in the city centre, approximately 5 minutes walk from the University).

Register with a doctor

You must register with a doctor or ‘GP’ when you arrive in Glasgow. Whilst here in the UK you are entitled to free medical care if you need to see a doctor or go to hospital.. As a full-time student, you and your dependants are entitled to free essential NHS care.

You should visit a GP for general medical problems. GP Surgeries/Clinics are usually open Monday - Friday from 9.00 - 5.00pm. Please check the times with you surgery and keep a copy of their opening times.

The official GP for the university is Dr Webster & Partners (Woodside Health Centre, Barr Street, Glasgow G20 7LR)

If you wish to choose your own doctor, you will need to visit the NHS website. You will need to enter your postcode on the ‘Heath Services near to you’ section and find a doctor (and other services) near where you live. You will have to register each member of your family, so please collect a form for each person.



Your doctor may prescribe some medicine for you. This is called a prescription, and you will only be able to get this document from your doctor. You will need to take your prescription a pharmacy (or chemist as they are also known as).

Pharmacy / Chemist

You should take your prescription to your local chemist and they will help you complete the form. The nearest chemist to the university, city campus is:

Boots the Chemist
Level 1, 220
Buchanan Galleries
Tel: 0141 333 9306

Register with the police (Police Registration is not applicable to everyone)

It will be clearly stated on your visa if you are required to register with the Police within 7 days of arriving in the UK. It is very important that you do this if required and ensure that your Police Registration Certificate is kept up to date with your address, place and course of study and visa status. The closest Police Station to GCU is in 2 French Street, Dalmarnock, Glasgow, G40 4EH.

GCU is working with 2 French Street, Dalmarnock Police Station to offer GCU appointments for GCU students arriving in September 2015.

To request an appointment, please visit New2GCU Police Registration Form.

For detailed information on Registering with the Police, please visit ISSS pages:

Register with a Dentist

We advise that you register with a dentist in case you have any dental issues whilst here in the UK. You can register with Woodside Dental Practice by calling 0141 332 0793 or looking on their website.

Emergency Treatment
If you need urgent dental treatment, and are not registered with a dentist, go to any surgery and ask to be registered as an NHS patient for emergency treatment. Or for immediate treatment, you can visit:

Glasgow Dental N.H.S. Trust
378 Sauchiehall Street
G2 3JZ
Tel: 0141 211 9600

Opening Hours: 9.00 - 11.00 am and 13.30 - 14.30 pm, Monday to Friday; 10.30 - 12.00 pm on a Sunday. On a Sunday there will be a small charge.

You can visit the Glasgow Dental N.H.S. Trust if it is not an emergency, all treatment is free. Dentistry students will carry out the examinations under supervision. Non-emergency patients are places on a waiting list. 

Apply for a National Insurance Number (if you wish to work in the UK)
It will be clearly stated on your visa whether you are entitled to work, and for how many hours. If you would like clarification on your working conditions, please speak with an ISSS adviser. It is very important that you do not work more than the hours permitted on your visa.

In order to work in the UK you will need a National Insurance (NI) number. These can be obtained by going online to the HMRC website or calling the National Insurance Number Allocation Service on 0845 6000 643. The website includes a section on how to apply when ‘starting work’.

You will likely be asked to attend an interview which will be held in a Job Centre Plus. They will ask you to provide the following information:

  • Full postal address
  • Nature of your employment
  • If you have applied for an NI number before
  • If you were in the UK at the age of 16 years
  • Your nationality
  • Your visa status
  • Date of entry to the UK
  • Dates of previous visits to the UK
  • If you have claimed benefits
  • If you require a interpreter for your interview
  • If you have any special needs requirements.

You should hear from the National Insurance Allocation Service with 18 days of your initial contact.