Monday, 30 May 2016

How to Prepare before coming to Sheffield

During my recent calls, I have been asked by some students what should they bring to the University of Sheffield. University life is one of best life experiences, so before you step foot into your amazing journey - don't get carried away and forget your preparation!

It's completely understandable as you will be travelling far away from home and there is obvious worry that you will forget something essential - which may not have been essential at home!

Coming from Malaysia, where there is no such thing as four seasons; so living in a cold and wet country like the UK may be quite an experience. Sheffield is known as the "North", yep, like the Game of Thrones. This is due to colder and damper weather, as compared to London.

I will break it down in categories what you ought to bring.


1. Winter Clothes

You can buy better winter jackets over here in Sheffield. I recommend getting a water proof winter jacket, as it rains quite often - usually from November until March. So you do not have to get one in your home country. Just bring a warm winter coat with you to Sheffield.

I think what's more important is to bring your long johns or thermal innerwear, as these will definitely keep you warm, especially if you are not used to the cold.

As for shoes, again, you have plentiful of choices of boots over here. All you should pack some flats and sports shoes with you from home.

2. Spring/Summer Clothes

If you are planning to stay in Sheffield over the summer, then you obviously can't wear your winter coat! So pack a few of your favourite shorts and tank tops. But if you think you have no space in your luggage for those clothes, fret not!

Many shops in the UK, including famous online retailers such as ASOS sell many affordable and pretty summer clothes. As a university student, you even get the perks of 10% student discount. Just remember to sign up for UniDays to obtain your student discount code.

3. Bag

A good bag is essential for a university life. Get a bag that is suitable to pack your laptop and some books. You will need it during exam season.

Furthermore, you would realise that it is so much easier to travel. When I make day trips or a short trips around the UK, I just pack whatever I need into my bag and ta-da! No need to worry about locking my luggage or dragging it around.


1. Contact Lenses? Glasses? 

Important advise: Bring a second pair of glasses if you are wearing one. The price of making glasses in the UK is expensive if you do not have insurance. This includes contact lenses and contact lenses solutions. I packed a year's supply of contact lenses, so I can save money and all the hassle of getting them here.

However, anything can happen and in the UK, you need an eye prescription for them to issue you contact lenses. The UK's regulation is pretty strict on that (and I'm not sure why). Thus, before you leave home, drop by your eye specialist and ask for a prescription. You never know when you need want.

2. Medicines

The same applies if you are on medication or if you are allergic to certain drugs. Get an up to date medical record before you arrive and it will save you lots of hassle.

Something to remind of home

Last but not least, pack some photos of your family and friends, or anything that reminds you of home. It can help combat homesickness.

I decorated my wall with photos of my family and friends and it brings a sense of coziness into a room that will be your home for the next one year.

Also, being a Malaysian, I packed all my Maggi, sambal paste and curry paste with me, so I can cook some homemade Malaysian food!


I hope this post has helped you, or at least gave you an insight of what you should packing before coming to Sheffield. Most importantly, do not overpack! Trust me, you will be buying some essentials over here like your pots and cutlery, so there's no point in packing those things.

Until the next post on What to Expect when you arrive at Sheffield!

International Office Ambassador for Malaysia
Qamarina Almas

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