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Freshers 2023/24 Top Tips

​News | 15 September 2023

​​​​​Students across Wales are currently counting down the days to the start of university.

In the lead up to Welcome Week, which kicks off on Monday 18 September at Cardiff Metropolitan University, we have rounded up some of our top tips to help Freshers settle in and make this new chapter as easy as possible.

Freshers ‘must haves’ for 2023/24

Freshers’ Fayre/Week: Cardiff Met Uni Freshers’ Fayre takes place on Wednesday 20 September. This a great opportunity to find out about the societies and sports clubs you can join and get some freebies too. It is also a great outing with your new housemates and one of the first opportunities to meet new people.

Find out more on the Students’ Union webpage about some of the activities taking place throughout Freshers’ Week: www.cardiffmetsu.co.uk

Welcome Hubs: there will be marquees on both the Llandaff and Cyncoed Campus for Welcome Week – if you need extra advice or general support, this is the place to go.

Life admin – checklist

TV Licence: You will need a TV licence if you have a TV in your halls or if you watch iPlayer for catching up on TV. Find out how to set up this up online.

Contents insurance: it is sensible to have contents insurance to protect your belongings should they go missing or are stolen. Confused.com’s Student Hub has a host of insurance providers available to help you find the correct policy.

Register with a GP so that you can receive routine and urgent care if you need it. This is especially important if you have an ongoing health condition. More information on healthcare options is available on Met Central.

Council tax: As a student, you are exempt from paying council tax. If you are living in private rented accommodation, you will need to notify your local council of your new address.

Travel cards: If you’re aged 16 – 21 and living in Wales, whilst studying at Cardiff Met, you’re entitled to make a great saving on the University’s bus service, Met Rider.

Finances – Cardiff Met’s Money Advice team can help you with any budgeting and money concerns. More information is available on MetHub.

Learn a new hobby/life skill

Learn to cook: food can be a great way to bond with people, learn new recipes from different backgrounds and cultures and make new friends. Suggest a house dinner once a week, everyone has to bring an ingredient and one person will teach the rest of the group how to cook a meal.

Join a sports team/gym: keeping fit is a good way to keep physically and mentally healthy but you could also discover a hobby you love from doing so and meet new people along the way. Cardiff Met is offering FREE gym and swimming memberships for students this year so there is no better time to join.

You are now in Wales’ Capital City. If you are new to Wales, explore off campus activities at Visit ​Wales: www.visitwales.com/things-do

Recycle – this may be a first if university is your first time living away from home. Make sure you know which items to separate and do your bit to keep the environment clean and tidy. Information on recycling and waste can be found on the Cardiff Council webpage.

Student Services

For many, university is the first time living in a new area or away from home and it can be daunting.

Cardiff Met has a number of services available for students to support with the transition into university life, including help with general wellbeing, finance support or accommodation. Our i-zone acts as the front desk for Student Services and Employability. With physical desks based on Llandaff and Cyncoed campus, this is your first port of call for resolving a range of non-academic queries.

You can also speak to them if you need help accessing the rest of our support services. Contact details and where to locate Student Services​ on campus can be found on our website.

Look after your mental health

Starting university can create feelings of anxiety, but remember, you are not alone on this journey and every single person will be feeling a mix of emotions as they embark on this exciting chapter in life. Be mindful to:

  • Give yourself time – it may not feel like home instantly and this is OK. Put pics up of friends, family and the things which will make your new space feel familiar to help you settle in.
  • Don’t put pressure on yourself – it is a marathon, not a sprint. Starting a new course and moving to a new city is big deal – set yourself daily tasks and write a to do list, to tick things off in the first few weeks so things feel less overwhelming.
  • Prioritise what makes you happy – make time for that morning coffee, a nutritious meal in the evening and a walk in the day. Listen to the things that make you happy and try to build those into your routine.
  • Try to keep an open mind – university is about learning, but you will also learn about yourself. Try new things, listen to people and remember, this is a journey.

Wellbeing workshops

Cardiff Met is also offering a number of wellbeing workshops for students to join. More information on the sessions available and how to join is available on MetHub​.​​