For many first-year students, the thrill of moving out of home to a new city is exciting. With some of the UK’s best universities, over 120,000 students choose to study in London. The UK capital has one of the most exciting cultural scenes, as well as academic institutions to help students succeed in their degrees.

Navigating London can be tricky for new students. The London Underground network boasts over 250 miles of track and 270 stations alone, with rail, bus, bike and taxi services also available to help get Londoners around. With so many ways to navigate the city’s it is easy to get lost.

Get a jump start on getting around London and enjoy some of our top tips for navigating your way in, out and around your new city.

Travel for less

As a new student, it is unlikely you will have a regular, 9-5 lecture schedule, which means you can take advantage of cheaper fares on transport fares.

Travel at off-peak times for some of the cheapest prices on tickets.  Generally, off-peak times sit outside of rush hour, think before 9.30am, middle of the day and after 6.30pm. Rail and underground services are usually quieter at these times too, so you might even get a seat.

Students are often eligible for railcard discounts too. Whether it is through your National Union of Students card or applying directly for a railcard, you could save up to a 1/3 on travel fares in and around London.

Learn your routes

To cut down on rent and living costs, some students who live within commutable distance of the capital choose to travel in from home for their lectures.

Students who live within the home counties and south-east England can take advantage of multiple reliable routes in and out of London. Whether you live in a Surrey market town or need to travel by train from Biggleswade to London Kings Cross, there is a service to suit every student.

Get to know the closest London terminal station to your university. If your hometown doesn’t travel directly to that terminal, make sure you plan your ongoing journey and leave enough time to make it to class.

Getting around town

First-time travellers in London can be easily confused by the daunting Underground map and cycle routes.

Luckily, there are several apps that can help you plan and navigate your route easily. Citymapper will help plot your route end-to-end, give you updated departure times and help you find your way through complicated stations. You can even connect to WiFi at most London Underground stations, making it easy to check on service delays and updates while below ground.