Bringing your family to the UK

Bringing your family to the UK

Only some students are permitted to bring family members to the UK as dependants. This page gives some information you will need to consider before you apply.

When bringing your dependants to the UK is right for you:

  • You have arranged suitable housing for you and your dependants (e.g., an apartment/flat where more than one person is allowed to live)
  • You have someone who can reliably care for your child while you are studying (e.g., a partner or hired child carer)
  • You are comfortable being on campus without your child and partner (e.g., when attending lectures and using the library and other facilities)
  • You can support yourself and your dependants financially – or they are able and permitted to support themselves – throughout your studies
  • You have read the information on immigration permission for family and supporting your dependants in the UK and made the required arrangements.

If you are planning to bring your family with you to the UK (or they are already here and you haven’t told us about it yet), please complete the Bringing your family to the UK form.  This will help us to support you and ensure you are kept up-to-date with relevant information and events.

More Information

If you are thinking of bringing your family to stay with you for the duration of your course, you will need to make very careful plans. 

Fill in the Bringing your family to the UK form

It is important to think through matters such as accommodation, living costs, visas, as well as schools and nurseries, if you have children. 

If you plan to come to the UK with your spouse and/or family, please ensure you have researched the accommodation options in and around Wolverhampton before you decide to move to the UK.

We do not have accommodation on campus for cohabiting couples or families. Our university student accommodation usually provides single study bedrooms which are suited to individual students only. We advise you to take this into consideration before making plans to travel with your family to study with us.

You'll find some tips here for house-hunting:

  • Start searching for rental properties using such as: rightmoveGumtree or SpareRoom 
  • You should expect to pay around £700 - £1,200 per month for family accommodation in Wolverhampton, depending on the area. You should also check whether it comes furnished/unfurnished and if bills are included.
  • When searching for properties, make sure you are well connected to the campus you’ll be studying at. Wolverhampton has a good bus, train and tram network.
  • If it is not possible to secure accommodation prior to your arrival, we suggest that you travel to the UK before your course begins (as long as it is within the validity of your vignette). This will give you time for your house search and means you won't miss out on important welcome induction week and the start of your academic study

If you cannot arrange suitable accommodation before you start your course you should consider whether it is best to travel alone. You could potentially bring your family at a later date when you have secured accommodation for them.

Permanent residents of the UK can access healthcare on the National Health Service (NHS). Students and dependants of students are also entitled to this if:

  • the international student is studying in the UK for six months or more
  • they have paid the Immigration Health Surcharge as part of their visa application.

You will pay the Immigration Health Surcharge when you make your visa application. Please be aware that you pay the amount for the length of your visa, which is not necessarily the same as the length of your course, because the Home Office automatically adds a ‘wrap-up’ period at the end of your studies.

As long as you paid the Immigration Health Surcharge during your visa application, it will give you access to the NHS in the same way as a British Citizen. If you have a visa for less than 6 months, you won't have paid the Immigration Health Surcharge and will need to ensure you have medical insurance to cover any non-emergency care.

Please make sure that you register with a doctor (also known as a GP) so that you have access to treatment at any time.

Full time education is compulsory for all children aged 5 and 16 years. Children below the age of 11 go to Primary School. From 11 to 16 or 18, they go to secondary school. The school day is from about 8.30am to 3.30pm Monday to Friday. The school term usually starts at the beginning of September and ends in July, so by the time you arrive, term may already have started. This means that there is no guarantee that your children will be able to go to the nearest school, as it may already be full.

As well as accommodation you may also have to arrange childcare, education and health services for you and your family. Depending on where you live you can access information from local Wolverhampton City Council. 

Find a School - 

Please check the immigration requirements to see if you are eligible to bring dependants with you, with either of these organisations: 

The conditions attached to your dependants’ visas will be shown on the stamp or sticker in their passport and their BRP. It will say how long they have been given permissions to stay in the UK (should be the same amount of time as the student) and whether they are permitted to work.

Your dependants will be able to work if you are either:

  • a government-sponsored student taking a course that is longer than six months, or
  • taking a postgraduate course of nine months or longer.

Visit the UKCISA website for more information on:

  • work entitlements, and
  • the types of work they can do.

Dependents are free to study –  

  • Please be aware that it is the dependant’s responsibility to ensure their visa is long enough to complete any proposed course of study. 
  • If a dependant needs more time to start or complete a course of study than their visa allows, they can switch to a Student Visa  within the UK, subject to meeting academic progress requirements if they have previously held student or Tier 4 leave. 
  • The sponsoring institution may not allow a dependant to register before the switch to Student status is complete and the new visa is in their possession. 

Council Tax is set by local authorities to pay for local services that they provide, such as waste collection, the police and the fire brigade.

Usually, as a full-time student, you will be exempt from paying Council Tax. However, if you live with adults (e.g., your partner) who are not students, you may be charged.

In the private sector, you or your landlord will receive a bill for your Council Tax for the year. Normally, you will pay this in 10 monthly instalments, followed by two months of no payments.

It is for the local council, not the University, to decide whether a student is eligible for council tax exemption.

More information about council tax can be seen on the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) website UKCISA - international student advice and guidance - Council Tax

Please be aware that if you are pregnant, you are still expected to abide by the conditions of your visa.

Your visa has been granted for you to be studying at the University of Wolverhampton on a full-time basis so you are expected to be studying full-time for the full course duration given on your CAS. There are strict rules on absence from your course.

If you want to take a break from your studies (known as Leave of Absence) due to your pregnancy we may have to advise you to return home while you are not studying. Taking Leave of Absence will mean that we have to report the break in your studies to the Home Office and your visa may be curtailed (cancelled). It is important to contact us at as early as possible to discuss your plans and the implications for your visa.

The NHS has general information on having a baby in the UK

Babies born in the UK are not automatically British citizens. They can remain in the UK without applying for a visa if you have no plans to travel. If you want to leave the UK with your baby they will need a dependant visa to be issued before they can come back.

Babies born in the UK cannot get secondary NHS services for free once they are over three months old. If you’re on a student visa, you will need to make a dependant visa application for your baby and receive a successful outcome before they are three months old.

There are plenty of fun things for you are your family to do in the local area without spending a lot of money You can search for more ideas.

You’ll be sure to find a park or play area nearby to where you live. These are all free to use and a great way to get some fresh air and exercise.

There are many libraries in the area operated by the Council. You and your children can join the library and borrow books. The libraries offer a great programme of free activities for parents and children to attend together.

The Students’ Union provides an additional resource for students and their families. We encourage you to be part of the Students’ Union community and consider what activities or resources may help you and your family outside of your studies. For example, you may want to join one of our many Societies, or you can see What’s On through the SU website.



There are a number of online food delivery companies in Wolverhampton that you can use to order meals and groceries.

The most well-known delivery companies are Uber Eats, Deliveroo and Just Eat, although you’ll find other companies by looking online. If you’re ordering pre-prepared meals there are lots of options to choose from – including Indian, Chinese, Thai, pizza, burgers, Korean and Turkish.

Supermarket deliveries

The large UK supermarket companies operate online delivery services. These include Morrisons, Sainsburys, Asda, Tesco and Iceland. You’ll first need to set up an account online and then select a delivery slot once you’ve selected and paid for your food online. 


Wolverhampton has is an outdoor market selling fruit, vegetables, footwear, clothes and other items.

The university is very excited to welcome new international students to campus for a full face-to-face experience. You are expected to attend all your classes on campus, and timetabled sessions will usually be held on at least three days of each week. 

Once you are in the UK, attendance at all of your scheduled on campus sessions will be mandatory and will be monitored via the university’s monitoring system.

We will be monitoring your progress on your course through your attendance, engagement with the online sessions via Canvas and your assessment submissions. If we are concerned about your attendance or engagement we will contact you to see if there is anything the university can do to support you. We hope you won’t have any problems with your attendance during your course, but if you do, it’s important to contact your Academic Coach or personal tutor to discuss your circumstances at the earliest opportunity to hopefully prevent it causing any issues for your visa.  

All students will need to complete the University of Wolverhampton Pre-Arrival form before they travel to the UK

The Airport Meet and Greet service will transport you free of charge from Birmingham International Airport to your university accommodation and is available to all students arriving in Birmingham between:

  • 21st September to 24th September 2023
  • 28th September to 1st October 2023. 

The team will only be at the airport if a student has booked onto the service so, please ensure you book at least 72 hours before your arrival! We recommend that you book this service as soon as your flights have been confirmed.  

There may be a short walk from the drop off point to your accommodation so please only bring luggage that you can carry alone. The booking form for the service is available here 

Once you are in the UK, you must ensure that you are adhering to your UKVI obligations and complete your enrolment and attend classes. 

Please email the Visa and Immigration Team on if you have any questions or concerns about your visa.

ASK@WLV is the first point of contact for all current student queries related to your studies and can be accessed online through the Helpdesk page on e:vision, over the phone or on-campus, Monday to Friday, from 10am to 5pm. 

The ASK@WLV team can help you access wellbeing support services, complete your module registration, and understand your course's rules and regulations.

Our friendly and knowledgeable team of advisors are here to help you get the support you need to make the most out of your time at university.

. Further information can also be obtained at: