If you are thinking of moving, studying, or marrying in the UK, and originate from another country, you will need a Visa. There are multiple visas depending on a number of factors. To find a list of these factors, visit the dedicated government visa website. From here you will be able to see which visa you need to apply for, which information you need to include in your application, and what health risks may factor into your application. Depending on which country you are from, you may be asked to take a Tuberculosis test. This is to stop any outbreak of TB in the UK. You must also disclose if you have a criminal record when applying for a UK visa. This will then be reviewed by a member of staff from the UK visas and customs team before a decision is made on the process of your application. If you cannot apply online from your home country, you can still apply by visiting your local visa application centre.
Student Visa Application
If you are applying for a visa in order to study and live in the UK, you will need to apply either online or at your local visa application centre – you can find where this is online. If you are not from the EU, Iceland, Norway, or Switzerland, you will definitely need a visa in order to study within the UK. Most students who wish to study within the UK will need a Tier 4 visa, which you must pay for. You can apply either online or via post depending on which country you originate from. The fees for different visas differ from person to person, and on how long they wish to remain in the UK. For a full list of prices, visit the UK visa website.
Once you have found out which visa you need to apply for, you will be asked a series of simple questions. These will include questions regarding your course and information about your previous qualifications. You may need to provide original documentation of your confirmation letter, along with bank statements. These will show if you meet the minimum financial requirement for living in the UK whilst studying. You can find out the minimum requirement over on the government website. You may also be asked to provide information on your education regarding the English language.
This process can be lengthy, so we advise allowing plenty of time before term starts. If you would like some help regarding your application, ring your college of university of study, and a member of staff from the customer service team will try and help you in any way they can.
Other Visa Applications
If you are applying to live, work, or marry in the UK, you will need a different type of visa. To find out which visa suits your requirements, visit the visa application website. From here you will be able to search and apply for the visa which suits your needs directly. Choose your country of origin from the drop-down menu. Once you have done this, you will be taken to a page which will ask you your reason for wanting a visa. These include options for tourism, work, marriage or visiting your child in study. Depending on which option you choose from this menu, you will be taken to a different page in which you can enter more details. If you are wanting to come to the UK to work, you will need to declare whether you will be here for longer than 6 months or not. Depending on your answer to this, you will be given the option to apply for a number of different visas. If you are a skilled worker, you will need a Tier 2 visa. If you are aiming to work in the UK as a volunteer, you will need to apply for a Tier 6 (temporary worker) visa.
Moving to the UK: What to expect
After you have applied for your visa, you can expect to wait around 15-60 days, depending on which Visa you have applied for, and from which country you originate. You can find the full list of waiting times on the government website. Once you have your visa, and it is time to travel to the UK, you will have to go through customs. Once you have been reviewed, you will be allowed to enter the coutry. As long as your visa is correct, and you do not have dangerous items in your luggage, your arrival into the UK should be a relaxed experience.
If you are struggling with your visa application, or would like advice on which visa to apply for, you can ring the UK Visa Helpline. From here, someone from the department of visas and immigration will be able to help you and your query further. If you are waiting for the arrival of your visa, we advise allowing up to 60 days, as this is the waiting period for the majority of visas.