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New to the UK – important things to do once you arrive

Written byPeter Kent
First published17th October 2019
  • Arrange a UK bank account
  • Register for a National Insurance number
  • Finding a job
  • Setting up utilities and communications in the UK
  • Driving in the UK
  • Information and resources

If you’ve just moved to the UK, welcome! We know moving to a new country can be a daunting experience, so we’ve compiled a checklist of things to do in your first few months here.  

Arrange a UK bank account

Opening a UK bank account is now fairly straight forward with the variety of app-based banks to choose from. If you’re new to the UK these types of banks will enable you to open an account quickly and easily. If you foresee additional costs associated with settling in, it might also be worth considering a personal loan. 

Some banks supported by Koyo include: 

  • Monzo
  • Metro Bank 
  • Starling 
  • Revolut  

Koyo also supports high street banks such as HSBC, Barclays, Natwest, Halifax, Santander and Nationwide but you may find that the app-based banks listed above work better for customers who are new to the country.  

Register for a National Insurance number

An NI number is a legal requirement if you want to work in the UK and pay tax. This is true whether you’re employed by someone else, or self-employed. Find out more information on the HMRC website. 

Finding a job

Luckily, the UK has one of the largest economies in the world. To find jobs in the UK or London, use job-boards which have search tools for open roles. Some popular sites include MonsterJobsite and LinkedIn.  

Setting up utilities and communications in the UK

Now you’re in your new home, it’s worth making sure your name is registered with the energy and water suppliers. It’s likely these services are already connected to your home but it’s important to make sure the accounts are in your name so there are no looming hidden bills, at a later date. This will also have a positive impact on your credit score.  

Driving in the UK

All EU/EFTA country migrants can use their existing full license to drive in the UK. However, if you’re from a non-EU/EFTA country and there is no reciprocal agreement in place, you’ll have to apply for a full UK driving license to legally drive. The UK government has a useful website for checking your eligibility to drive, using their driving licence tool

Information and resources

The UK government has one of the best online resources for citizen information in the EU. GOV.UK contains information on Brexit, benefits, education, tax, childcare and more.  

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