What to bring

We know there can be a lot to remember when you are packing for university. To help you, we have put together a list of important documents and items you will need to bring with you. 

Essential documents 

Bring the documents in the following list in your hand luggage. You may need to show these documents to enter the UK. 

  • Passport 
  • Visa (if required) and the letter you receive when your visa is issued
  • Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certificate and letter from the University – if required
  • Your academic offer letter
  • Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) – if required
  • Original academic qualification certificates and English language test report – remember to bring formal translations if your documents are not in English
  • Proof of fees paid – if paid in advance
  • Sponsorship letter – if applicable
  • Proof that you will have the money to pay your fees and to support yourself while living in the UK – including bank statements
  • Marriage and birth certificates for you and your family – if applicable
  • Proof of address in your home country – this could be either a letter from the University sent to your home address or a recent letter from your bank
  • Proof of your UK address
  • University accommodation contract – if applicable
  • Health documents (see the section below)
  • Certificate enabling you to work with vulnerable people if needed (see the  work documents section below)

It’s also important that you bring:  

  • A card that you can use in the UK. It can take a few weeks to open a bank account. Find out more about arranging money for when you arrive on our International funding page.  
  • Enough cash to pay for a taxi from Leeds city centre to your accommodation if needed. Be aware that taxi drivers don’t accept £50 notes for short journeys. Make sure you bring £10 and £20 notes with you.  
  • Contact details and address for your accommodation and the 24-hour University Security Office.

Health and insurance documents 

Before being allowed to enter the UK, you may need to show proof that you have been screened for tuberculosis. Check whether you need a tuberculosis test certificate

Bring any vaccination and health check records for you and any family members coming with you to the UK. If you haven’t already been vaccinated for Meningitis C and Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR), you should arrange these before you leave home.  

Check the information on your healthcare entitlements in the UK and what you will need to pay for.

If you have a visa for less than six months, it is essential to buy health insurance before you come to the UK and bring your insurance documents with you.  

If you are here for longer than six months and pay the Immigration Health Surcharge, buying health insurance is still recommended to give you extra cover.   


If you have an ongoing medical condition, bring a letter in English from your doctor explaining:  

  • your diagnosis (the name of your medical condition) 
  • the name and dose of your medication  
  • any monitoring requirements, such as regular blood tests 

Bring this letter and your medication in the original packets to show your doctor in Leeds. Check before you travel whether your medication is available in the UK and any regulations related to bringing your medication into the UK.   

If you have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), you should also check the ADHD medication available in the UK

Work documents  

If you want to do paid or voluntary work in the UK which involves working with young people under the age of 18 or vulnerable adults, you will need to:

  • apply for a criminal records check
  • bring your criminal record check certificate with you to the UK

We recommend you allow plenty of time to apply for this, as the checking process can take several weeks. 

Find out how to apply for a criminal records check before you arrive in the UK.


You will have to carry your own bags outside airports and on connecting trains and coaches, so keep your luggage light and don’t bring more than you can carry without help. 

Customs regulations in the UK are very strict. Read more about what you cannot bring into the UK on customs advice for travellers entering the UK. 

If you need to bring a lot of luggage, consider arranging to send things from home when you have moved into your permanent accommodation.  

 If your accommodation doesn’t provide kitchen equipment, bedding or toiletry, the University of Leeds can arrange to deliver these when you arrive. Book this service on our Arriving page.

If you want to get more recommendations on what else to bring with you directly from our international Leeds students, join our events or chat with our Link to Leeds ambassadors team.