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Using the internet, phone and post in the UK

Phone box


  • Most UK schools, colleges and universities provide free internet and computer access (however, you may sometimes have to queue to get onto a computer). In accommodation owned by your school, college or university, you may have an internet connection for a set fee, for the term or academic year.

  • Off-campus, most towns have internet cafés where you pay for internet and computer access by the hour. Try public libraries too – they can be cheaper.

  • Wireless internet access is available in many coffee shops and public places. Some train services provide this facility for a small charge.


  • The UK country code is +44. To call a UK number from abroad, you must also omit the first '0' from the area code – for example, the area code for London is '020', so from outside the UK, dial +44 20...

  • To call another country from within the UK, dial 00 followed by the country code.

  • You can contact the operator by dialling 100 (or 155 for the international operator). To access the directory enquiries service for information about telephone numbers, dial 118 500 for UK numbers or 118 505 for international numbers.

  • Public telephones are generally located near public transport stations, post offices or on high streets. Your school, college or university should have public telephones on campus, and there may be a phone in your accommodation.

  • Off-peak: Calls are usually cheaper ‘off-peak’ (in the evenings, at night and at weekends), than at ‘peak’ times on weekdays.

  • Internet calls with services such as Skype are very cost-effective if you have a computer with an internet connection, a speaker and a microphone. Ask your friends and family to get set up, so you can stay in touch.

  • Mobile phone deals and International Telephone Discount Cards are widely available. Talk to other students to find out about good deals.

If you want to get a mobile phone (cellphone) contract in the UK, see Choosing a UK mobile phone plan.


  • Post offices usually open from 9 am to 5.30 pm Monday to Friday, and from 9 am to 12.30 pm on Saturday. For information on costs and services, visit the Royal Mail website.