Xiao Yao is a Chinese student studying abroad at the University of Limerick. Here, she shares her general tips for incoming students to UL. Check out UL’s new website developed specifically for China: http://www.ulchina.org/
Hello, I am Xiao Yao, a study abroad student from China, and by now, I have been in Limerick for a month. This month is the most amazing one I have ever had in my life, trying new things, making friends both from home and abroad and experiencing different cultures. And now, I really want to share some information and feelings with you.
Our Chinese people always regard “Clothing, Food, Accommodation and Transportation” as the four most basic necessities of life. So in this article, I would like to talk about them one by one.
Before arriving, I heard about the weather in Limerick, which featured much rain. So according to some suggestions, I bought a raincoat. I thought it would be useful, but it just let me down. That day, I wore the raincoat, but still got my pants wet. And if you want to get on the bus and sit down, you need to take it off, which is really inconvenient. So I will not suggest you to bring a raincoat. As for an umbrella, it is more useful than the raincoat, but you need a really sturdy one, cause the wind is sometimes very strong on campus. I bet you do not want to worry about getting wet and the wind breaking your umbrella at the same time. But I strongly recommend you to buy some hoodies or a coat with a cap. Those are very useful, because most of time, the rain is not heavy at all, but if you do not have a cap, you will still get wet. (hope you can understand the situation I am talking about) So, hoody!
I do not quite know about the Irish local food, but my house mates who are local people, always make some spaghetti and wraps. In the supermarkets, such as the Aldi, which is quite near the school (about 20 minutes walk from the flags) and with great bargain or the Tesco in the city center, they both offer fresh vegetables, fruits and meat, and you can also find some “ready-to-cook” food if you are in a hurry. On campus, near the Stables, there is a Spar, where you can find some basic living stuff and it also serves coffee, wraps, sandwiches and so on. In the main building, you can find Eden restaurant, Starbucks, Subway and so on. There are plenty of coffee shops scattered all around the campus. And for Chinese students or other Asian students, there are three Asian stores in the city center, where you can buy some special sauces, even snacks. For Chinese students especially, who really need to have rice as their staple food, I recommend you buy a rice cooker. In Argos, it will cost you around 25 euro.
I live in Thomond Village, which is about 20 minutes walk to campus. Every day I go to class, I will pass a bridge, on which I can enjoy the beautiful river and tranquil scenery. (But things will change completely if it is rainy…) The living standard has spoiled me because it is comfy and homey. The reception is very helpful with great service. If you have any problems, they will help you.
The bus 304 is really convenient for us to go to the city center or nearby shopping malls. It will cost you 2.1 euro per trip, but if you get a student leap card, the price will be reduced to 1.6 euro. Thus, I also recommend you to go to the student hub to get a leap card. It will help you save lots of money.
Now, I am really enjoying living and studying here. If you still suffer now and feel everything is in a mess, do not worry, everything is going to be fine. By the time you get everything settled, you will definitely enjoy the life here!
Check out UL’s new website for China http://www.ulchina.org/