Calling all London freshers! Here’s everything you need to do in your uni city today
You’re in the capital baby!
You’re officially a student in the capital city! London is huge and it has a lot to explore – you won’t get a chance to feel bored. It has world-famous clubs, restaurants, rooftop bars, museums and more. It also has some of the most stylish people you’ll ever see, so you’ll never be afraid to step out the box and express yourself.
Before you get stuck in, you might want to think about a student bank account. The NatWest Student account* comes with an offer of £50 cash and four year tastecard membership – giving you 2-4-1 or 50% off food deals at participating UK restaurants and takeaways. To apply for a NatWest Student account – visit natwest.com/students.
*Student account eligibility criteria apply. Apply online only. Offer Terms and Conditions apply. £50 cash is a limited time offer until 5th November 2021. Offer can be withdrawn at any time.
If you don’t know your way round London, it can be easy to get lost or spend way too much money or do both. For this reason, we’ve compiled an in-depth guide to the city – recommended by London students themselves.
The best places to live
Price: £££ Noise level: ||| Supermarkets: A good mixture of small and big supermarkets
Living in central London is always going to be expensive and noisy. It’s not normally a first choice for students but if it’s what you’re looking for, it’s an amazing area to live in. The houses are beautiful, you’re likely to be close to your uni and there’s so much to do.
Price: ££/£££ Noise level: ||| Supermarkets: A mixture of cheaper options, like Lidl, and more expensive shops
The West side of London is a mixture of students and middle-class Londoners – Paddington and Kensington are both popular among uni students. Some of the houses are extremely expensive, whereas others are more affordable – it’s just about digging around to find something that suits you.
Price: ££ Noise level: || Supermarkets: Big supermarkets like Tesco and Sainsbury’s are everywhere
The South East has a huge student community, with a mix of artsy and suburban areas – Bethnal Green, Shoreditch and Dalston are all great options. The South East isn’t as well connected as other areas but it’s got loads of amazing restaurants, shops, bars, clubs and things to see.
Price: ££ Noise level: ||| Supermarkets: Everything from Lidl to Waitrose is nearby
The South West of London is a popular area for students and young people. Clapham, Brixton and surrounding areas are full of students, grads and young professionals so there’s always a buzz and loads of people to meet. The Tube links to Central from South West makes getting to the important spots very easy.
Wanting to keep your budget in check? The NatWest Student account* comes with an offer of £50 cash and four year tastecard membership – giving you 2-4-1 or 50% off food deals at participating UK restaurants and takeaways. For more info and to apply, visit natwest.com/students.
Padella in London Bridge and Shoreditch – you have to virtually queue but it’s worth it and it’s so affordable
Thaisty on Brick Lane – tastecard offer available
Barcelona Tapas Bar & Restaurant on Lime Street – tastecard offer available
Ugly Dumping in Soho – this Chinese restaurant does some of the most affordable eats in Soho
Eataly on Bishopsgate – great and affordable Italian food
BFI Riverfront in Southbank – it’s on the river, under the London Eye and still within your budget
City Izakaya in Moorgate – tastecard offer available
Héfaure in Chinatown – their fluffy pancakes are a bit of a trend
Killa Waffles in Camden – their menu includes cheddar waffles packed with fried chicken and mac & cheese
Terry’s Cafe in Southwark
Effra Social in Brixton – this place is set in an old Georgian townhouse and has a huge beer garden
Worth the price:
Sushi Samba at the top of the Gherkin – if you’re wanting to treat yourself, they do amazing sushi with amazing views
Dishoom at multiple locations across London – awesome Indian cuisine and delicious cocktails
Evelyn’s Table in Soho
Circola Populare in Rathbone Place
Ave Mario in Covent Garden – this place is famous on TikTok for its beautiful interior
Bancone in Charing Cross
Are you a big foodie? With a NatWest Student account*, you get the offer of £50 cash and a four year tastecard membership – giving you 2-4-1 or 50% off food deals at participating UK restaurants and takeaways. For more info, click here to visit natwest.com/students.
Where to grab a drink
Zebrano in Soho – they is a combination of a cocktail bar, restaurant and late night club, with an affordable menu
Pergola in Paddington and Olympia
Byward Bar in Byward Street – tastecard offer available
Netil 360 in Hackney – a walk in rooftop bar with great views, DJs and tasty pizza
Jin Bo Law at the Dorsett City Hotel in Aldgate – more on the pricey side but very worth it
Big Chill in Brick Lane and King’s Cross
Ballie Ballerson in Shoreditch – a ball pit cocktail bar where Addison Rae visited a few months
Barrio in Shoreditch, Soho, Brixton and Angel – they do really fun Bottomless Brunches
Night out spots
Location: XOYO When: Tuesday Music: Techno, House, Bass
Location: Heaven When: Thursday-Monday Music: Live music, Pop, Charts
Location: Egg When: Wednesday Music: Hip Hop, RnB, House, Bass
Sundays at Fabric
Location: Fabric When: Sunday Music: Dance, Disco, Techno, House
Location: Printworks When: Weekly Music: Live music, Electronic, Hip Hop
Ministry of Sound
Location: Ministry of Sound When: Every weekend Music: Dance, House, Techno
The South London Soul Train
Location: Bussey Building When: Saturday Music: Soul, Disco, Funk, Hip Hop
Thinking of setting up a Student account? You could save on your late-night takeaways with a NatWest Student account* as it comes with an offer of £50 cash and a four year tastecard membership – giving you 2-4-1 or 50% off food deals at participating UK restaurants and takeaways. For more info, click here to visit natwest.com/students.
Taxis: Uber, Black Cabs, Addison Lee, Bolt, Ola
The Underground: Students tend to get an Oyster card or annual travel card (prices depend on what zones you’re travelling in)
Bus services: The bus is £1.55 for unlimited travel within the hour
Cycling: There are loads of bikes to rent in London and lots of cycle lanes throughout the city
London students’ top tricks and tips
“When looking for a place, find somewhere near a station – you’ll inevitably have to get the Tube to uni and it’ll make your journey a lot easier”
“London landlords can be shifty – always make sure you check your contracts carefully to avoid problems later on”
“Try a variety of different nights out – there are a lot of cheap nights with good music further out. Central tends to be expensive and busy”
“Don’t stay in one area of the city, it’s the capital and there’s loads to do so explore it”
“Buy a monthly Oyster card or use contactless for transport – this will be a much cheaper option”
“Download the Citymapper app for any transport queries. It’s a lifesaver for finding the quickest route and for planning travel and tricky times”
Make the most of the city. With a NatWest Student account* you receive an offer of £50 cash and four year tastecard membership – giving you 2-4-1 or 50% off food deals at participating UK restaurants and takeaways, cheaper cinema tickets and more. For more info, click here to visit natwest.com/students.
Your mini bucket list for the city
• Visit Tate Lates – it’s even more fun than the regular Tate Modern
• Check out the Van Gogh Immersive Exhibition
• Take an Uber Boat from Canary Wharf to Greenwich or London Eye to the O2
• Go to Borough Market and try out all the food options on offer
• Check out the Columbia Road Flower Market on Sunday
• Use the Emirates Cable Cars in North Greenwich at sunset
• Try the beautiful Sky Garden rooftop
• Head to Kyoto Gardens for some peace and tranquillity
• Check out Somerset House and any exhibitions on
• Catch a film at the Everyman Cinema – they have sofa you can lay down on
• Depending on where you live, go to a park near you and enjoy some drinks with your mates (some of the best include Hampstead Heath, Primrose Hill, Clapham Common and Hyde Park)
• Check out the many amazing rooftop bars in the city
• Go to the markets in Camden
• Enjoy an fun night out in Soho