Settling in


University is an exciting time in your life – a new city, new friends and new responsibilities. It’s a huge change in a short space of time and for a lot of students it’s the first time living away from home.  All of this means it can often feel difficult to settle in to your new surroundings. Homesickness or nerves about getting to grips with University life is something a lot of students go through – so you aren’t alone. Whether you’re from the UK or beyond, there are plenty of things you can do to feel right at home in Manchester.


Practical tips

Emotional tips

It may feel a little more difficult to be excited for university this year with all of the recent uncertainty. However, there are still lots of things to look forward to that you will experience this year and over the coming years. Take a look at this.

Manchester is an exciting and vibrant city, and whether you are joining us in Semester 1 or later in the year in Semester 2, we hope that when you arrive in Manchester that you are able to enjoy some of the amazing things that this city has to offer. You might not be able to do all of the things on this list straight away, but hopefully over time you will be able to make the most of this wonderful place.

One good way to get excited for University is to try and connect with your coursemates or flatmates via social media before you arrive. See if there any groups for your halls or course, and share tips/ worries/ thoughts with one another before you start. 


Written by University of Manchester students!

1. Take a day trip to Manchester and get to know your new home. You could come with your friends, your partner or your parents. Getting a sense of the place you're moving to is guaranteed to make you feel less nervous.

2. Make a plan of what you're going to do the first few days after you arrive. This doesn't have to be set in stone as your plans may change, but having things to look forward to may calm your nerves.

3. If it feels like alot needs doing before you go, take time to sit down and strategically evaluate your situation, research what needs doing and plan your priorities.

4. Learn the skills for living away from home - get someone who's experienced in living independently to show you how to cook a meal and use various kitchen appliances (or maybe even do a wash!).

5. Talk to current (or graduated) university students about their experiences of university - their stories will definitely make you feel more at ease.

6. Use your nerves for good. When you're nervous, that anxious energy can manifest in various unhealthy ways. Instead, throw your energy into something constructive like scouring the internet for room decorations or researching into your course. Let yourself get excited.

7. 'Meet' people online - through various University of Manchester facebook groups. You can ask and answer questions, and through reading other posts you'll realise that other people are just as nervous as you are.

8. Remember all new beginnings are difficult. The first semester may be bumpy but this is nothing to worry about. Give it time to feel right. Try not to panic too much. And remember - you go to university to get an education, not just from books but also from friends, life experiences and even mistakes.

Setting in and making friends

Getting to know the city

Settling in academically

Need more help? Check out this guide and see below

Students Union:

The Student's Union has over 400 societies open to all students. Joining a society is a great way to meet new people and settle in to university.

More information

International Society:

The International Society is open to all and offers regular trips around the UK. Plus, it's a great way to make friends from all over the world.

More information


Volunteering gives you the opportunity to get to know your local community and offer help to those in need.

More information

Res Life:

For any questions or issues you may have relating to Halls of Residence, your ResLife team are there to help.

More information

Peer Support:

Peer Support schemes are designed to help you settle in to all aspects of university life, not just academics.

More information


Have any questions? Here's a complete A-Z of all the University's support services to help you find the answers you need.

More information

We recognise that some student groups will need specific support during their time at university. On this page you'll find tailored information for various student groups such as BAMEPGRLGBTQ+CommuterCare Experienced and more.

We hope you have found the information on this page useful to help support the transition to university life. If you have any further questions or need more advice, please take a look at our information for parents, relative, friends and guardians.