Bank Account

You’ll want to set up a bank account after you arrive. There are a few options on Franklin St (Wells Fargo Bank 165 E. Franklin St., or Bank of America 104 E. Main St.), and the State Employees’ Credit Union is on 310 Pittsboro St.

Driver’s License and Car registration

If you bring a car from out of state, you will need to switch your registration and plates to North Carolina within 90 days. Unfortunately, this is both expensive and inconvenient. You’ll need to go to the NC DMV in Carrboro Plaza (North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles, 100 N Carolina 54 #104-GG, Carrboro) to retake your written drivers’ exam and get a NC drivers’ license.  Then, you’ll need to drive to the east side of Chapel Hill to register your car and get a NC license plate (DMV Orange County License Plate Agency, 1704 E Franklin St, Chapel Hill). You will have to pay some fees along the way, and each year you need to have your car inspected. Talk to older graduate students about details!

Coffee Shops

On Campus

The Meantime
Hands-down the best place on campus to get coffee, tea, and social justice. Located on the first floor of the Campus Y, it’s also the closest coffee shop to the Statistics & Operations Department in Hanes Hall.

Stone And Leaf Cafe
A nice place to study and grab a snack if need be. This coffee/smoothie shop is in the Student Stores and right next to the three main libraries on campus.

Friends Cafe
If you’re in the Medical/Biostatistics side of campus, this is your coffee shop. Good hours, easy place to meet people, and you can take your coffee into the restof the Health Sciences Library with its plethora of comfy study pods upstairs.

Port City Java
This place is mostly for undergrads who live in South Campus. Pretty decent if you’re in the area.

Saladelia (Marsico)
If you’re wayy in the Medical side of campus, this is another great option for you. They definitely have the best lunch selections as far as coffee shops on campus go.

Saladelia (FedEx Global Educaton Center)

Chapel Hill/Carrboro (Off-Campus)

Open Eye Cafe (Carrboro)
Yep, it’s open. All the time. Great coffee and study scene with plenty of spots to sit.

Gray Squirrel (Carrboro)
One of the few coffee shops in Chapel Hill/Carrboro that guarantees its workers a living wage. In addition to having great SF-style coffee it’s the most LGBTQ+ friendly scene off-campus. Yeah, it’s lit.

Carolina Coffee Shop (Chapel Hill)
Super close to campus and open a little bit later than anything on campus.

Gray Squirrel (Chapel Hill Public Library)
If you need more Gray Squirrel in your life, they have a satellite café in the Chapel Hill Public Library.

Perennial (Chapel Hill)
Great coffee shop on Franklin Street. Pretty close to campus and tons of small study tables. If you can somehow manage to get there before 8 AM, they’ll sell you a cup of coffee for $1.

Cha House (Chapel Hill)
We heard you like boba. If so, take a stroll down Franklin Street to Cha House to get some pretty decent stuff here. They’ve got great wi-fi, too and some small Taiwanese street food dishes

Joe Van Gogh (Chapel Hill)
The fantastic Durham chain also has a Chapel Hill location. It’s a bit far from campus but if you’re nearby, try it!

Cafe Driade (Chapel Hill)
You’ll need a car (or a bike — it’s on the Bolin Creek Bike Path!) to get here, but it’s run by the same lovely people who own Open Eye. You can sit outside and enjoy the scenery, or you can peruse the antique shop next door (check out the mechanical music boxes!).  It’s also got great hours.

Caribou (Chapel Hill)
This is also far (near Driade), but if you’re around Eastgate Mall, it’s got real comfy chairs. Real. Comfy.

Cocoa Bean (Chapel Hill)
Far from campus, but quite reminiscent of The Meantime. Has a vegan market inside. Near Glen Lennox apartments & restaurants.

MeetFresh (Meadowmont/Chapel Hill)
MeetFresh is a fantastic cafe (with boba!!) in Meadowmont. It’s a bus ride away from campus, but definitely a great place to bring friends.

Farther out

Cocoa Cinnamon (Durham)

Awesome coffee shops in Durham with globally inspired beverages and funky, lo-fi, decor. A few locations

Honeysuckle Tea House (Chapel Hill)

A bit of a drive away from campus but absolutely worth it for this idyllic, bucolic tea house. A perfect place to relax and spend a weekend afternoon, but only when it’s nice outside.


UNC Fitness – SRC and Ram’s Head, Classes

Climbing – Progression or TRC

Hikes – See Hikes in the FUN section

Maps, healthcare, legal servies

Campus Maps 

Student Health Center located west of the football stadium. More info available here

Carolina legal services provides free legal services to students

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