The Oxford Diaries: (4) Check List Of To-Do’s I Wish I Knew About


In November, 2012 I applied to Oxford for the MSc course. I learned a number of things a long the way that I believe, or hope, will help future students sort of stuck in my situation. This series explores my graduate college life.

This is going to just be a written list y’all, most of this isn’t applicable to everyone but this list sure as hell would have helped me!

6 Months Before You Move:

  1. Apply for your visa early.
  2. If you do not hear from your department or anyone about the visa process, ask.
  3. Book housing, if possible. Or just do it ASAP, this is horrible at the last minute.
  4. Book ticket, again, if possible! I did this 3 months ahead of time and I was OK but I’d have liked to have done it earlier. It’s so much cheaper!
  5. Get your head wrapped around the fact you’re leaving.

1 Month Before You Move:

  1. Give your boss your 2-weeks or 1 month notice? Or ealier if that should so please you? (I left work a month before I went to school).
  2. Inform landlord of final rent.

2 Weeks Before You Move:

  1. Get your cell phone unlocked, if possible.
  2. Start changing currencies, if possible.
  3. Decide on how you will get your money from Country A to Country B and inquire as to local services to make this happen.
  4. Book bus from airport or confirm travel arrangements with people in new country.
  5. Confirm hotel arrangements or housing arrangements, again, if applicable.
  6. Make a budget.
  7. Take cash for the first week!

1 Week Before You Move:

  1. Pack appropriately (If possible, find out from friends or people living in the country what the weather is like and what is culturally expected).
  2. Pack small items from home (For instance, I took guava and pineapple jam and was given a rum cake for the journey).
  3. Pack small memorabilia (I have Bahamian flag stickers, just small ones on my laptop or mirror).
  4. Do not pack books.
  5. Finalize your money, wire transfers, bank drafts or currencies.
  6. Cancel any bank accounts you may not need or cancel any accounts anywhere in general that are liable to cost you!
  7. Make a schedule of important events or events you’re required to go to ahead of time (I can’t tell you how many times I have or other students have missed important meetings because we were too tired to check what was going on).
  8. Get your hair cut, meet with friends, say your slow goodbyes.
  9. Purchase any electronic converters, if possible.

When You Arrive And Get Over Jet Lag:

  1. Get a Bank Account.
  2. Have all the paperwork for new bank account ready. Because if not, the money fairies will make you cry.
  3. Get a local SIM or cell phone.
  4. Skype the important people in your life.
  5. Purchase essentials: hangers, kettles, hamper, sheets, bedding, etc.
  6. Get a local library card (Most important thing on this entire list and in the entire world!:))



About Claire (BWB)

It's Claire (aka Quirky) from Bitches With Books, an online book blog that serves up a healthy dose of book reviews, lists + literary madness.
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5 Responses to The Oxford Diaries: (4) Check List Of To-Do’s I Wish I Knew About

  1. Pingback: 2013 In Review | Bitches With Books

  2. I wish I had a cool College experience like this, packing and moving into a dorm or something. This list could’ve been a lifesaver. The first place I did visit after moving to Gisborne last year was in fact the library. I had to wait a week for mail with my address on it to fully register the library card but week 2 of my new town I had rented artwork for my walls and had a couple of loaned books to read before I had unpacked my bookshelves!

  3. DoingDewey says:

    I always get a local library card as soon as I move. Libraries are the best šŸ™‚

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