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Advice and Guidance for EU students

Advice and Guidance for EU students

We are proud of our richly diverse student community, and value highly the contribution of all European citizens in making Buckinghamshire New University a great place to both study and work.

BNU is a university where higher education transcends geopolitical borders. The transformative nature of the education we deliver is bolstered by the opportunities to share and embrace different cultures, providing our students and graduates with a breadth of perspectives to ensure they rise to the global challenges they face.

It is this enriching experience which enables our students to acquire the knowledge, skills and understanding to help them make a real difference to society and the world.

The UK's withdrawal from the EU

The UK-EU withdrawal agreement has been signed by EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen and EU Council president Charles MichelThe EU will leave the UK on 31 January 2019 at midnight, and an 11-month transition period will then begin.

During the transition period – which runs until the end of 2020 - the UK will still follow all the EU's rules and regulations on trade, travel and business. The UK will remain in the single market and the customs union, and the free movement of people will continue.

You can find out more on the UK Government’s website.

EU Settlement Scheme: Settled and Pre-settled status

The UK government has reached an agreement with the EU that will protect the rights of EU citizens and their family members living in the UK. It has also reached an agreement with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, and a separate agreement with Switzerland.

These agreements mean that most citizens from the EU, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland will need to apply to stay in the UK, and can then continue their lives in the UK as they do now.

Our current EU, EEA and Swiss citizens citizen students who want to continue living in the UK must apply for settled or pre-settled status.

Settled status

EU, EEA and Swiss citizens will usually get settled status through the EU Settlement Scheme if they’ve started living in the UK by 31 December 2020 and have lived in the UK for a continuous 5 year period (known as ‘continuous residence’). EU, EEA and Swiss citizens with settled status can spend up to 5 years in a row outside the UK without losing their status.

Pre-settled status

If EU, EEA and Swiss citizens do not have 5 years’ continuous residence when they apply, they’ll usually get pre-settled status. They must have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020. EU, EEA and Swiss citizens can then apply to change this to settled status once they’ve got 5 years’ continuous residence. They must do this before their pre settled status expires. EU, EEA and Swiss citizens with pre settled status can spend up to 2 years in a row outside the UK without losing their status. They will need to maintain their continuous residence if they want to qualify for settled status.

EU, EEA and Swiss citizens with settled or pre settled status will be able to:

  • work in the UK
  • use the NHS for free, if they can at the moment
  • enrol in education or continue studying
  • access public funds such as benefits and pensions, if they’re eligible for them
  • travel in and out of the UK.

Frequently Asked Questions

Information for current students


The EU settlement scheme is designed to offer EU, non-EU EEA and Swiss citizens and their eligible family members living in the UK the opportunity to protect their residence in the UK after the UK leaves the EU.

Please keep up-to-date with information on the UK Council for International Student Affairs’ (UKCISA) website for further information about how Brexit might impact your immigration status.

EU Citizens interested in studying at BNU or who are holding an offer


  • EU, EEA and Swiss nationals are able to use the new ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app which will use a chip in their passport to verify an applicant’s identity. If the chip is broken, or someone is unable to use the app then they will be directed to a Visa Application Centre to register biometrics instead.
  • Those able to use the UK Immigration ID check app when applying will receive electronic notification of UKVI’s decision. This will set out the full conditions of their immigration status.
  • They will also be able to check their immigration status and its conditions at any time using the ‘view and prove’ service on GOV.UK. This online service will provide a secure record of someone’s immigration status which is held digitally by the Home Office and is available to them at all times.
  • The ‘view and prove’ service can also be used to share and evidence of someone’s rights in the UK – such as the right to work or study – by giving organisations or people, such as employers or universities access to the relevant information about their immigration status.


  • EU, EEA and Swiss students can continue to visit the UK for up to 6 months, without applying for a visa and may participate in short term study. All nonrecreational study must be undertaken at an accredited institution. Recreational courses undertaken for leisure, that last no longer than 30 days and which do not lead to any formal qualifications, will not need to be undertaken at an accredited institution.
  • The 6-11 month Short-term study route is distinct from the main student route and requires applicants of all nationalities to obtain a visa before travelling to the UK. This route is specifically for people taking English language courses, and it does not require sponsorship and does not permit work.


Universities Minister for England, Chris Skidmore announced that there will be no change to the tuition fee status of EU students who begin their studies in the 2019-20 or 2020-21 academic years.

This means that EU students studying at BNU will pay the same fees as 'home' students for the full duration of their course, even if the course you’re interested in finishes after the UK has left the EU.

The UK government has not issued any guidance on fee status or student support for those commencing study in 2021-22. We will share any updates here.


You will not need a visa if you are arriving to commence your studies before 1 January 2021.

Please check the British Council’s advice pages and the Government’s website for the latest information.

How Brexit might affect your travel plans


The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) allows any EU citizen to access state medical care when they are travelling in another EU country.

The UK government has asked all 31 countries to keep valid EHIC cards in use for UK citizens until 31 December 2020.

Travellers in the EU and beyond are advised to have appropriate travel insurance, whether they have an EHIC card or not, as there are limitations to EHIC. Check that it covers your current circumstances, including any medical conditions.


The UK Government has published a website tool to help you check a passport for travel to Europe after Brexit.


Under EU rules, the cost of making calls, sending messages or using the internet on your phone in the EU is the same in the UK.

After Brexit, these rules will no longer apply. However, some UK companies have said they may continue to offer this benefit to their customers. Please check with your mobile phone provider.