Working While Studying in the United Kingdom


Working While Studying in the United Kingdom

Working While Studying in the United Kingdom
Working While Studying in the United Kingdom

Working while studying can be a good option for international students in the United Kingdom; read the following post to know more about working while studying in the UK.

Working while studying is a common practice in western countries; whether you are in the United States of America (USA), United Kingdom (UK) or Canada, as an international student you have the permission to work for a certain number of hours in a week.

Working while studying abroad is a fantastic idea as it ensures that you gain skills and experience for your future employment. It also gives you a chance to get to know the local community. Many international students in the United Kingdom take up part-time employments alongside their studies. Others often opt for internship programmes or work placement opportunities.

Working as a Student in United Kingdom

Now, if you are in the UK on a student visa for more than six months, then you will have the permission to work in the UK while studying. Check your passport carefully; if it says – “Work must be authorized” or “Able to Work as authorized by the Secretary of State”, then you will be permitted to work during your study tenure.

In case your student visa permits you to work, then you can work up to 20 hours a week during your term period and full-time during holidays. Make sure that you work only during the stipulated times and there’s no breach of your visa conditions. While you are permitted to do all kinds of work, you cannot run a business.

While working can help you deal with your weekly expenses on a regular basis, but completely relying on part-time work for paying off tuition fees and accommodation is not a very good idea.

Many General Tier 4/ students can opt for employment opportunities in the UK during their studentship tenure. Young students who are 16 and above are permitted to work for 10-12 hours a week; If you are applying as a Tier 4 (General) student, whether you will be able to work, that depends on the institute you are studying. In case you are studying in a private college, chances are that you will not be permitted to work; however if your college is a recognised by a body, then you might be permitted to work. You are permitted to work if you are studying at the below-mentioned types of education providers:

  • A Recognised Body
  • An institution that received public funding as a institute of higher education in the following states:
    • England
    • Scotland
    • Wales
    • Northern Ireland
  • Publicly-funded further education college;

Some Questions Answered

Going below certain questions regarding working in the UK are answered:

  • Can You Pay For Your Studies Through Work?

Well; it’s a no in this case; you should be able to pay for your living and tuition expenses without having to work in the UK. However, if you need to apply for a migration application in the country and you end up working lawfully in the country, in keeping with the restrictions explained above, you can use your UK earning to show that you can pretty well meet the requirements of your maintenance within the country. However, as an advisory note, you should not completely rely on working in the UK because of the following reasons:

  • It can be a little difficult finding job
  • It is unlikely that you will earnings will be enough to cover all your expenses
  • Do not be surprised if you lose your job
  • Juggling job with studies is not always easy
  • When Rules Change, do Work Conditions Also Change?

Well, rules regarding visa and immigration keep changing from time to time; and that does have an effect on the working conditions considerably. However, it’s not immediately; if you already have immigration permit to reside in the UK. You have to conform to the guidelines that were enforced when you applied for the permission. However, in case you need to make an application of immigration to stay longer, the new rules will be applicable in order to stay longer.

For example, if you are enrolled at a private college, and if you have the permission to work, you don’t have to stop working. Certain changes in the immigration rules came into force from July 2011, affect you only if you apply for immigration after this date;

  • Can you opt for a Gap Year and Work Consider Working Full Time?

Well, again it’s a no in this case. If you intend to take a gap year or defer your studies for a year, you must leave UK and come back your course resumes. Working full-time is permitted only during your vacations or while you are engaged in an internship or work placement.

  • Income Tax and National Insurance

If you end up earning more than a specified personal allowance in any given tax year, you will have to pay income tax. You can gather more information about this from Low Incomes Tax Reform Group and HM Revenue and Customs.

You will also be allotted a unique personal number known as National Insurance Number (NINo). This will be used to record your National Insurance contributions. Both –employers and employees have to pay NI contribution that helps to fund a contributory benefits.

The Final Words

Working as a student is actually a good idea especially if you can juggle both. So, if you can manage your studies with job, part-time employment opportunities in the UK can turn out to be a good option.

Author Bio

A digital media professional, Trisha Mukerjee loves creativity and challenges. A passionate blogger, she has been lending her expertise to the online world by penning blog posts and articles that span across myriad topics ranging from jobs to education and even social issues. The above post throws light on work permit for international students in the UK.


  1. I am student from United Kindom studying from last 2 years,i can understand how important is working while studying.We can manage our studies with work doing like part time tuition and writing content in free time..

    Thanks for sharing such an wonderful article..Keep posting.


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