Living in Cardiff



Who can help me find accommodation in Cardiff?
If you are a new student looking for accommodation please email:

Cardiff Met has an Accommodation Office based on the Cyncoed campus which is open throughout the year to assist you with any accommodation queries. The Accommodation Office has very helpful and friendly staff who can assist you with queries about your halls of residence accommodation or they will be happy to advise you about living in the private sector.
This office can provide you with lists of private accommodation available to rent, suitable housing agencies to rent from and can also offer advice regarding tenancy agreements or contracts. For further information you can telephone: (029) 2041 6188 Email:


Please click here to view further information on Work.

Money Matters

Please click here to view further information on Money Matters.

Registering with the Police

On arrival in the UK, nationals of some countries are required to register their details with the police. You will know if this rule applies to you if there is a stamp in your passport or a phrase on your visa indicating that you must do so.
If you are a foreign national and have one of the following sentences in your passport, you must register with the police as soon as possible:

• “The holder is required to register at once with the police“
• “Register with the Police within 7 days“

Students from the following countries will need to register with the police when they arrive in the UK.

MoroccoNorth KoreaOmanPalestinePeruQatar
RussiaSaudi ArabiaSudanSyriaTajikistanTunisia

Where can I register with the police?
There is only one police station where you can register in Cardiff and that is Cardiff Central Station, King Edward VII Avenue, Cardiff, CF10 3NN. 

When can I register with the Police?
You can register with the Police on Thursdays between 8.30am - 1.00pm, with the Nationalities Officer - Karen Wolfendale. There is no need to book an appointment in advance of your visit

How do I get there? 
Taxi: You can get a taxi to the Police Station by calling 029 20555 555 and asking them to take you to Cardiff Central Police Station, King Edward VII Avenue, Cardiff, CF10 3NN.

By Bus: You will need to get a bus to Cardiff City Centre and walk to King Edward VII Avenue, Cardiff CF10 3NN which will take about 20 minutes.

What do I take with me?
  • Passport
  • 2 Passport sized photographs
  • Letter confirming you are a student at Cardiff Met eg Acceptance letter or enrolment letter
  • A fee of £34

During your time in the UK, if there are any changes in your circumstances, you MUST ensure that you register these changes when they occur. For example:

  • Change of address
  • Change of course / University
  • Marriage/birth of children
  • Visa extension
  • Any absence from the UK for a period of over 8 weeks


Please click here to view further information on Health.


How can I find an appropriate place of worship in Cardiff that suits my needs?
You will be pleased to know that Cardiff is home to many different cultures and religions.
We will be happy to introduce you to local religious groups such as the Christian Union, the local Islamic Community, the Sikh or Hindu communities and others. There is a large variety of places to worship in Cardiff no matter what faith you follow. We also have a Spiritual Advisor at Cardiff Met named Paul Fitzpatrick who will be very pleased to answer any questions you may have in this area. He will be happy to offer care and advice to students of all faiths and to those of none. Paul is in contact with all of the city’s major faith leaders and will be happy to help you find a suitable place of worship to meet your needs.

Contact Paul Fitzpatrick at or Tel: 029 2041 7252 or 07917818524

Are there any prayer facilities on campus that I could use?
Yes! At Cardiff Met, we are proud to have a number of facilities which are suitable spaces set aside for meditation, prayer and reflection. Details are as follows:

Chapel at Cyncoed - Based in C block, this space can be used for worship and meditation. It is a space which has flexible use with curtains to screen off areas and is usable 24 hours.

Prayer Suite at Llandaff Campus - Based in A Block on the ground floor, we have both male and female prayer rooms available for your use. These are suitable for all faiths and in the past they have proved to be particularly convenient for our Muslim students.

Cultural Issues

Please click here to view further information about Cultural Issues.


Cardiff is a multi-cultural city with a diverse range of foods available to buy to suit every dietary and cultural need e.g. Halal meats, Asian foods, Chinese foods etc.
Here are some addresses where you will find specific foods:
  • Clare Foodstore - Asian, 45-47 Clare Road
  • Shopright - Indian and Asian, 28-30 City Road
  • Vegetarian Food Studio - Asian/Vegetarian, 115-117 Penarth Road, Grangetown
  • Tudor St, Riverside has a number of Asian food Stores and Chinese supermarkets
  • Albany Halal Food Stores- Halal meats, 57 Donald St, Roath
  • Zem Zem Mini Market- Middle Eastern, 12-14 Wyverne Rd, Cathays
  • Al Sheemal Halal Foods- Middle Eastern, 15 Salisbury Rd, Cathays

Large supermarket chains such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda also supply a wide range of products which may be similar versions of the foods you are used to eating in your home countries, so it is a good idea to visit these stores too to compare products and prices.

Please be aware that many shops in the UK tend to open at around 9.00am and close at 6.00pm Monday – Saturday; however they are usually restricted to shorter opening hours on Sundays – even 24 hour supermarkets will close at 4pm on Sundays!

TV Licence

Do I need to buy a TV licence?
If you own a television in the UK you must buy a TV licence. You can arrange this on-line or for more details call 0870 241 6468. Checks are carried out and if you are found to have a TV but no licence, you can be fined up to £1,000. Whether you live in a house or halls of residence, you must possess a TV licence to use your TV or a laptop to watch TV Programmes.

Council Tax

What is Council Tax?
The majority of adults in the UK pay Council Tax which is a tax to pay for local services based on the value of a private property. It pays for local services e.g. rubbish collection, police services, and fire brigade and is based on the value of a private property and the number of people (over 18 years of age) living there.

Do I need to pay for Council Tax?
If you live in halls of residence accommodation you will not need to pay this.
If you live in private accommodation you will not need to pay Council Tax if you fall into one of the following categories:

  • If you and everyone else in your property are full-time students or you are living in the
  • UK with your spouse and children
  • AND your spouse and children are NOT from a country in the European Economic Area
  • AND your spouse and children have been admitted to the UK as your dependants and have a visa stamp/Biometric Residence Permit stating “no recourse to public funds”
  • AND no other NON-STUDENT lives in the property

The Council's definition of a full-time student is :
The student must be studying on a course of at least 12 months in length AND they must be in attendance for at least 24 weeks a year AND the course involves at least 21 hours study, classes or work experience a week.

Please note that your council tax exemption certificate will be issued in accordance to the length of your course as specified in your offer letter. If you are a post graduate student, you will only be exempt from paying council tax during your taught modules.

The rules of Council Tax are complex and the above is a general guide. If you require further information please contact Cardiff Council on Tel: 029 2087 2087 or access the student briefing notes on the UKCISA website

My landlord/the Council is asking for a Council Tax Exemption Certificate. What is this?
Once enrolled this is available for you to print by visiting "Essentials" on the Student Room. It will confirm the dates that you will be studying full-time at the university. This certificate will need to be submitted to your landlord or directly to Cardiff Council as soon as possible to prevent you being charged for council tax during the period that you should be exempt from this charge.


How can I travel to university?
The University bus (Met Rider) service is a dedicated bus service which runs between Cardiff Met campuses and into the city centre. There are bus stops outside the Cardiff Met campuses, but at Cyncoed it is located inside the campus by the steps in front of the main reception.

Do I need a bus pass? 
If you wish to travel by bus, you can either pay for your journey each time you board (you will need the correct money as change is not given) or you can buy a bus pass which will last you through the academic year. If you are going to be using the bus frequently, it will work out cheaper to buy a bus pass and the pass will not only allow you to use the dedicated university Met Rider Bus but also ALL Cardiff buses. Bus passes can be arranged by filling out an application form which you can obtain from the Accommodation Office on Cyncoed campus or from the I-Zone at the front of Llandaff campus. 

Driving in the UK​

Will I be able to drive in the UK? 
This will depend on whether you currently have a driving licence and also whether that licence is recognised as one that permits the holder to drive in the UK. For full information, please see the UKCISA 

I wish to learn to drive whilst in the UK. How do I do this?
You will first need to apply for a provisional driving licence and then you will be expected to take a series of driving lessons followed by a test. For detailed information about learning to drive and application forms for licences, please visit theDVLA website. More information about driving in Great Britain as a visitor or new resident can be found here.

Returning Home and Reverse Culture Shock

For some of you, it may be nearly time to return to your home country for good, to start or continue with your careers. Many of you may have mixed feelings about going home – you may be very excited about seeing your friends and families again in familiar surroundings but it can also be very sad leaving the UK after making so many good friends and having become used to a routine whilst you have been a student here.

We understand that this could be a very difficult and stressful time for you as you will have a lot of preparations to make before returning home. So, in order to help you, we suggest that you take a look at the guidance notes in the link below. 

Reverse Culture Shock

Before you came to the UK, you probably expected that you would need time to get used to the language, the different foods, the weather and new ways of doing things. Many students are surprised to find that they also need a period of adjustment when they return to their home country. Although you may think that it will be easy to go back to familiar relationships and patterns of behaviour, you may have some difficulty settling back in and need time to adjust. This is called reverse culture shock. Please be aware of reverse culture shock, but do not worry about it. Concentrate on enjoying the positive aspects of being back home, such as being with friends and family, and re-discovering your own country. More information about reverse culture shock can be found below: