Children and Parents in Woods

International students International students with families

If you're bringing family with you to Scotland, we're here to help and give you support! You'll find lots of useful information below, including activities and days out organised by the International Family Group.

Some international students coming to the UK can bring their spouse and children under the age of 18 with them as their dependants. However, if you plan to bring your spouse/family with you, please bear in mind that the cost of living will increase accordingly.

UKCISA Dependants Guidance

Home Office Dependant Guidance

If you hold a Tier 4 (General) visa you may be able to apply for visas for your family, by applying for a Dependant(s) visa.

UK Visas and Immigration consider dependants to be:

  • a partner (spouse, civil partner or unmarried partner) OR
  • child (children over 18 are not eligible unless they are currently in the UK as your dependant)

You may bring your dependants if (the main Tier 4 applicant):

  • you are studying a course at postgraduate level that is at least 12 months in duration OR 
  • you are studying a course at any level over six months long AND you are government-sponsored

Please consult the PBS Dependant Policy Guidance for further information on eligibility to bring dependants.

It's compulsory for children between the ages of five and 16 to attend school. Your child will be accepted into a local state school at no charge.

The best way for caring for children under the age of five is for you and your spouse to organise your study and free time to ensure that you personally meet the needs of your children. Childcare for children under five is expensive and places are limited. You should expect to pay upwards of £650 per month for full time childcare for pre-school aged children.

In Scotland, all children aged three or four years old are entitled to a part-time, funded nursery place in either a council nursery or in a nursery or playgroup which has a partnership contract with the council.

Finding accommodation for you and your family may take some time, therefore you should be prepared to have to search for suitable accommodation once you arrive in Glasgow.

We'd strongly recommended that you come to the UK on your own in the first instance to find accommodation that most suits your needs then bring your family over. We'd advise you not to enter into a contract with a private sector landlord without first having seen the accommodation he/she is offering you.

Take a look at more information on private accommodation.

The cost of accommodation can be expensive, with one-bedroom flat costs from £175 per week or more in the private sector. You should give careful consideration to these costs and other factors such as childcare facilities when deciding whether or not to bring your family to Glasgow.