TV Licensing: Students move 91 miles away to study

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TV Licensing is encouraging Derry students moving away from home to study to check whether they will need a TV Licence.

Students moved an average of 91 miles to study at university or college, according to new research published by TV Licensing.

Young men travelled farther – 98 miles from home on average - than women, who ventured 85 miles.

The research*, which comes as new students aiming to ‘fly the nest’ for the first time in the autumn begin to make their departure preparations, also found 60 per cent chose their university because they wanted to live in different town or city. Just 6 per cent of students picked their university because it was closest to home. A mere 2 per cent selected the location for their studies so they could be in the same place as their boyfriend or girlfriend.

Whatever the reason, TV Licensing is encouraging Derry students moving away from their family home to check to see if they need to buy a licence when they head off to university or college.

Students need a licence if they are watching or recording TV programmes at the same time as they are broadcast, whatever device they are being viewed on. Generally speaking, students won’t be covered by a communal TV Licence or their parent’s licence. While it’s less common for students to take a TV to university with them, tablet ownership amongst students has more than doubled in the past year with over 1 in 3** students owning a tablet.

Mark Sterling, spokesperson for TV Licensing, said:

“August is a really exciting time for many students going to university or college as they’ve got big changes ahead – especially those moving to a different part of the country. In the rush to get many tasks done, it is easy to overlook things like arranging your TV Licence. So we are encouraging students to think about it sooner rather than later, just so they can check it off the to-do list and focus on relishing in the student lifestyle.”

Mark Bell, President of University of Ulster Students’ Union, added:

“Many first year students will be moving out of home for the first time, starting a new adventure at university. Some will be moving many miles from home, others, just around the corner. Regardless of where they’ve chosen to study, and their reasons for doing so, new students need to make sure they’re licensed if they are going to watch live TV whilst away at uni.”

Conrad Dinsmore is a 20-year-old student from Newry who studies Construction Engineering at University of Ulster, Jordanstown. He lives in Belfast with four friends. He commented:

“I had two main motivations for choosing to study at University of Ulster in Jordanstown - it offered the course which I was interested in and it provided me with the opportunity of living in Belfast. I was keen to experience living away from my family home for the first time, but didn’t want to go to England or Scotland as that would be too far from home. Studying at UU means I can have the best of both worlds – living in my student accommodation during the week and going home at the weekends.”

For further information, simply visit:, or call TV Licensing on 0300 790 6113.