When shortlisting universities, there are number of factors to consider such as the course content, university’s ranking, living expenses and surrounding area; but do students take into account the level crime at the university city?
It is absolutely normal for parents to be concerned about their children’s safety when they are abroad and in a new environment on their own. Parents should be rest assured that many universities work very hard to ensure all students’ safety and work closely with the local police.
Business Insider UK published the 15 safest cities in Britain (September 2016):
14. (joint) Chelmsford
14. (joint) Swansea
14. (joint) Norwich
11. Brighton and Hove
Regardless which university you decide to enroll at, you must always take the pre-cautionary measures to ensure your own safety. Here are some basic tips I learnt during my years abroad:
- Do not leave your wallet and any valuables in sight and avoid carrying large amount of cash on you;
- Do not go out at night alone – always walk with a friend;
- If you are walking alone, stay on a busy street and tell your friends where you will be heading to. Avoid unsafe / dark areas in your city. Call for a taxi if necessary;
- Keep your passport safe. Make a copy of your passport, credit cards and bank details;
- Keep your house keys and phone in an inside pocket. You can even clip it in your trousers using a keychain so it doesn’t fall off;
- Lock your room whenever you leave and make sure your windows are closed properly;
- Save the local taxi companies numbers on your phone (make sure the taxi is registered and licensed);
- Always be aware of your surroundings;
- As a first year student, it is recommended to stay at the University’s accommodation;
- If you live in a private house, install burglar and fire alarms. Save the number of your landlord in case of an emergency;
- Write your email address on your luggage tags.
SelfEvident App is a way for people to engage with the police and help reduce crime. It makes it easier for people to store evidence of the crime and file a crime report with the police from your smartphone. I surely hope you do not ever have to use it, but it is good to know it is there.
Be safe and enjoy your experience as an international student!