Living in Aberdeen

Moving to a new city is exciting but you also may be a bit nervous. So there are a few things you should know before living in Aberdeen.

The “facts” below, about living in Aberdeen may be a bit tongue in cheek, but there is some truth in most of these. Moving to a different city can be very scary and daunting, however, there are some things we thought you should know before making the move to Aberdeen. (Most of these won’t impact your life at alllll, but they’re rather funny.)

Everything is made from Granite. Like EVERYTHING. Known as the Granite City, as most buildings in the city are made from the local product. It’s how you would say, quite. . . grey. We’re only kidding, there are some beautiful spots in the city, the beach, parks and quite a few other places which aren’t so grey.

You’ll probably forget you’re on the coast. Because Aberdeen is such a ‘city’, you won’t even realise that the beach is only 15 minutes away. Although with the coast, you have to be aware of the pesky seagulls, they are everywhere. And be aware, these aren’t normal seagulls, these are huge, ginormous, giant, food- pinching seagulls, so watch out. 

Aberdeen is quite far away from. . . well most things. In the north-east of Scotland, it’s literally miles from any other signs of life. But once you’re in the city, there are no real reasons to leave (apart from the fam). 

There is a long-standing rivalry between Robert Gordon University and the University of Aberdeen. RGU has gone full-on 21st century, with glass, and shiny buildings, taking the uber-modern approach. Whereas if you attend UoA, you’ll know most buildings are a trillion years old, look like they were once a castle, and it’s proud of being super traditional. Whichever way you look at it, or whichever one you prefer, you’re all getting a degree and living together in Aberdeen so. . .

The nightlife is awesome. Even though it’s only a small city, Aberdeen is full of great places for a great student night out, and you’ll find somewhere for every night of the week, Result!

Aberdeen’s beautiful historic buildings and architecture are world-renowned, however, the cobbled streets aren’t as gentle as they seem, proving a death trap in cold weather and when you’re wearing heels – so beware! 

There are multiple ways to travel around the city. First, buses, they’re a little different than what you may be used to. Make sure you have the correct money, as they don’t give change, and they are ALWAYS on time, so make sure you are too. Secondly, taxis are expensive so maybe don’t make a habit of using these quite so often. Thirdly, cars, with Aberdeen being a relatively small city, driving around is a great option, plus at ABeleven we have a safe car park. And finally, walking, we’ve concluded that walking everywhere is probably the best option if you’re conscious of money & plus its free exercise. 

It can be very windy. Gales and storms aren’t uncommon, so don’t bother with an umbrella, it’ll only end up in a bin. 

With it being so far north, Aberdeen can get VERY cold. Don’t wait until you go home partway through the 1st semester, take all your winter stuff now, in Aberdeen winter basically starts in September. You’ll need to invest in a warm coat, hat, scarf, gloves and maybe even a ski suit. 

Avoiding people you may like or may not like so much can be a bit difficult. Aberdeen is such a small city, and if you don’t see them on a night out or in the pub, they’ll be in your local Tesco at 3 am when you’re in your PJs. 

The Scottish accent is hard enough to understand when you’re not Scottish, however, the Aberdonian accent is on another level. If you don’t understand, just nod, agree and follow it up with an ‘oh yeah’. You may also hear the phrase ‘fit like’ a lot, and this doesn’t refer to someone being attractive, it’s used to ask how a person is. . . we know, confusing.

Obviously, all of the ‘statements’ above should be taken with a pinch of salt, but we like to think that past and present students can relate. Let us know what you think, and whether or not you totally get what we mean about living in Aberdeen.

Thinking about moving to Aberdeen to become a student, read our blog ’13 Reasons to be a Student in Aberdeen’.

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