Your visa options to study design abroad in London, United Kingdom
London is the perfect choice for a student who loves the hustle and bustle of a capital city—but also love great food and drink, parks, live music and the arts.
There’s an awful lot to like about this diverse, dynamic, thriving and ever-changing city. Centuries of rich and vibrant history surround you wherever you go, with beautiful, iconic and often imposing buildings appearing around every corner. And whatever ignites your passion and creativity, you’ll find it inside one or more of those buildings.
“If you are going to be a creative, you need to immerse yourself in a creative environment. London has all that and more!” —Kate Holland, Australia
Information about London:
- Our campus location is conveniently located the middle of the City of London, a 5 minute walk from Liverpool Street and Aldgate Stations.
- Course dates and fees for London
Interviews with past students:
Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) Visa holders, European Union (EU) members, European Economic Area (EEA) members and Swiss citizens.
The United Kingdom offers the Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) Visa, which allows 18—30 years old from Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand or Taiwan to live, study and work for up to 24 months. Perfect to graduate from our 3 months full-time or 9 months part-time course, then work or travel for the remainder of your visa.
Please note: Shillington is unable to sponsor the Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) Visa, so we can’t accept students from Hong Kong or the Republic of Korea.
If you have a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) passport, you don’t need a visa to study in the United Kingdom.
Accommodation and transport tips
Looking for where to live in London? Since you’ll be spending a lot of time at Shillington, we recommend sticking within a 30 minute commute-time of campus. Past students recommend areas such as Dalston, Stoke Newington, Southwark, Bermondsey, Clapham, Whitechapel and Walthamstow.
“I ended up finding a perfect room in a really nice and comfortable family house in Airbnb, with a direct line to Shillington. Because it was a brand new listing, it was a reasonable price. I would also suggest that you start looking as soon as possible.” —Carolina Reis, Portugal
Research your options:
Transportation in London:
- You can just use your bank card! There is contactless payment on buses, underground, overground trains and some National Rail.
- If you don’t want to use your bank card, get an Oyster card. Easy for payments on all buses, tubes and overground trains, and you can save with a weekly or monthly travel card.
- Santander Cycles, Lime E-Bikes, Mo-Bikes available throughout the city.
- Please note: Shillington students are not eligible for travel concession cards.
Cost of living and exchange calculator
You’ll probably have a lot of questions about how much moving to London will cost. Do your research to best prepare for your study adventure!
Here are some helpful financial resources:
- XE Currency Convertor is a great tool to calculate the exchange rate from your home country into pounds.
- Numbeo offers a cost of living calculator, designed to help you discover how much it would cost to live in London.
- Visit London shares top 11 money-saving tips for tourists.
- Broke in London shares a guide to living in London on a budget.
Creative's Guide to London
There’s so much to see and do in London!
Want to know the cool spots according to people in the design scene? On the Grid is a collection of cultural guides lovingly curated by local creatives. Check out top recommendations for London, broken up by unique neighbourhoods.
“The scale and longevity of a city like London with such a deep and rich culture around art and design really lends itself to being an inspiring city to study design in.”—Nick Jacobs, Portland
Shillington’s top 10 things to do in London:
- Design Museum. One of the world’s leading design museums—covering product, industrial, graphic, fashion and architectural design—alongside outstanding exhibitions.
- The Barbican Centre. Located on the famous Brutalist estate, the Barbican centre hosts a gallery, library, cinema, concert hall, theatre only 15 minutes walk from the London campus.
- Borough Market. Dating back to 1014, Borough Market is the best place to discover London’s food culture—there’s everything from a cheesemaker to handcrafted alcohol.
- Columbia Road Flower Market. Every Sunday, Hackney’s Columbia Road is taken over by stalls selling an abundance of flowers and plants—a delight for all the senses!
- Tate Modern/Tate Britain. No matter what kind of art you are in to, London’s two Tate galleries have got you covered. Their collection ranges from John Everett Millais to Ai Weiwei.
- Bermondsey Street. With a few galleries and museums, and a lot of pubs and restaurants, Bermondsey Street is a great way to get a real taste of London.
- Brick Lane. Home to one of the best markets in London, Brick Lane is a magical mix of vintage shops, street art and world famous 24-hour bagel shop Beigel Bake.
- Kew Gardens. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew is home to over 50,000 living plants—you’ll hardly believe you’re still in a city.
- Hyde Park. London has over 3000 parks but Hyde Park is the biggest. As well as taking in the greenery, you can open water swim in the Serpentine or soak up some culture at the Serpentine Gallery.
- God’s Own Junkyard. A neon wonderland in Walthamstow, East London—and a great place to grab a cup of tea and a slice of cake.
Websites for arts, culture, and lifestyle inspiration:
Instagram accounts to follow:
What I love about London is that, whatever your interests are—whether it is football, art, food, history, music, film—you will definitely find lots interesting places to visit, people to talk to, and events happening.