The United Kingdom is a member of the European Union but is not part of the Schengen area. It operates its own visa policy where certain nationalities have to apply for a visa before arriving in the UK. However, there are many nationalities that are permitted to enter and stay in the UK without obtaining a visa. In this article learn more about how to apply for UK Visa, UK visa application process and requirements, UK visa fees, UK visa types, UK standard tourist and visitor visa application.
Who Needs to Apply for UK Visa
If you hold any of the following nationality statuses, you can enter the United Kingdom without a visa:
- British nationals who are EU citizens
- British citizens
- British Overseas Territories citizens (citizens of Gibraltar)
- British subjects (who have the right to live in the UK)
- Citizens of Commonwealth countries (who have the right to live in the UK under the Immigration Act 1971)
- Irish citizens (under the Common Travel Area – the United Kingdom, Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands)
- All European Union citizens
- Citizens of the EFTA member states (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland)
UK Visa Types
There are several different visas for the UK and the one you need to apply for will depend on the duration of your trip and your reason for traveling to the UK. Check GOV.UK’s website to learn about these visas.
- Standard Visitor visa
- Marriage Visitor visa
- Permitted Paid Engagement visa
- Parent of a Tier 4 child visa
- Visit the UK in a Chinese tour group
- Visa to pass through the UK in transit
Work and Business visas
- General work visa (Tier 2)
- Intra-company Transfer visa (Tier 2)
- Minister of Religion visa (Tier 2)
- Sportsperson visa (Tier 2)
- Temporary Worker – Charity Worker visa (Tier 5)
- Temporary Worker – Creative and Sporting visa (Tier 5)
- Temporary Worker – Government Authorised Exchange visa (Tier 5)
- Temporary Worker – International Agreement visa (Tier 5)
- Temporary Worker – Religious Worker visa (Tier 5)
- Temporary Worker – Seasonal Worker Visa (Tier 5)
- Youth Mobility Scheme visa (Tier 5)
Investor, business development and talent visas
- Innovator visa
- Start-up visa
- Entrepreneur visa (Tier 1)
- Exceptional Talent visa (Tier 1)
- Graduate Entrepreneur visa (Tier 1)
- Investor visa (Tier 1)
Other work visas and exemptions
- UK Ancestry visa
- Domestic Workers in a Private Household visa
- Representative of an Overseas Business visa
- Turkish Businessperson visa
- Turkish Worker visa
- Short-term study visa
- General student visa (Tier 4)
- Child student visa (Tier 4)
- Family visas: apply, extend or switch
- Apply for a permit to join your EU or EEA family member in the UK
When to Apply for Your UK Visa
Visa applications are processed within 3 weeks, so you should apply well in advance of your trip. You may submit your application up to 3 months ahead of your departure date.
Where to Apply for Your UK Visa
The British Embassies and Consulates located across the world do not issue visa applications. Instead, you will apply for your visa at one of the visa application centers located in your country:
- VFS Global
- TLS Contact
These companies deal with visa applications on behalf of the Visa and Immigration service in the UK. VFS Global and TLS Contact is not responsible for making a decision about your application. You will simply submit your application to them and they will then forward it to the British Embassy or Consulate for processing.
In order to find out which company you need to deal with and their location, go to GOV.UK’s website and click on: “Visas and immigration”:
How to Apply for UK Visa
There is an overview on how to apply on VFS Global and TLS Contact’s websites, so you should take a look at those before you do anything else.
- Research your visa type
- Apply for your visa through GOV.UK
- Pay for your visa fees
- Choose your services
- Upload your supporting documents
- Visit the visa application center
- Track your application
- Pick up your documents
- Register on the GOV.UK website
- Choose any optional services and book an appointment
- Attend your appointment at TLS Contact
- Passport Return
- Register your application
- Complete the visa application form
- Pay the visa fee
- Book your appointment at either VFS Global or TLS Contact
Making appointments with the embassy or visa application center is generally free and can be done yourself. However, If you are running short of time or not sure which consulate to apply to or have no idea on how to get this done yourself then not to worry, we will make the appointment for you for a small service fee!
Booking a visa appointment using our services is pretty simple! All you have to do is follow the 3 simple steps below:
- Visit the link to schedule the visa appointment
- Submit the appointment details, visa you are applying for, consulate you need the appointment for, the country you need the appointment IN and make the payment
- Receive appointment confirmation in email
What Documents to Prepare for United Kingdom Visa
You need to prepare all the required documents for your visa application, so check what they are before you attend your appointment. If you submit an application with anything missing, it may be rejected.
- Visa application form
- Passport – valid for at least three months after the planned date of return, issued within the last 10 years with 2 free pages
- Previous travel history for the past 10 years
- Bank statements or proof of earnings such as a letter from employer confirming the start date of employment, salary, role, company contact details
- Proof of financial support from a business, a friend or a relative etc
- Proof legal residence
- An employer’s letter stating your role, salary and length of employment OR a letter from your education provider confirming enrollment and leave of absence. If self-employed – business registration
- Birth Certificate and proof of family ties and/or details of anyone accompanying you with a copy of your parent(s) passport (if you are under 18)
- Travel dates to the UK
- Details of accommodation while in the UK
- Declaration of how much you think your trip will cost
- Your current home address and how long you’ve lived there
- Your parents’ names and dates of birth
- Proof of salary
- Your employer’s address and telephone number
- Your partner’s name, date of birth, and passport number
- The name and address of anyone paying for your trip
- The name, address and passport number of any family members you have in the UK
- Details of any criminal, civil or immigration offenses you have committed
If you’re planning to obtain your flight reservation for visa without paying for the ticket, all you have to do is follow the 3 simple steps below:
- Visit the Visa Reservation website to choose the right package
- Submit the travel details and make the payment online
- Receive flight itinerary in email
The Visa Appointment Requirements
When you attend your appointment, you will submit your application and supporting documents to the visa officer who will examine them. If he/she needs to confirm any of the information you have provided, they will question you further in order to make a fair decision about your visa application.
If you have not already paid the fee, you will do so at your appointment. You can pay in cash, credit or debit card, but check with the visa application center which payment options there are. There may be additional service fees to pay as well. These fees are non-refundable.
You will also need to provide biometric data which is a scan of your fingerprints and a photograph.
Visa Application Decision
You will be notified when there is a decision about your visa application and you can collect your passport from the visa office or have it mailed back to you. If your visa has been approved, you will find it inside your passport. If it has been rejected, it would have been for a reason such as:
- Missing documents
- Passport damaged/invalid
- Applying for the wrong type of visa
- Lack of funds
- Fake documents
It is very important for you to take your time when you apply for your visa and check the website (s) of the relevant visa offices for everything you need to do. If you fail to comply with what is required, this will lead to your application being rejected. However, if your application is rejected, you have the opportunity to appeal the decision.
Live And Work In U.S.A – How To Apply For Visa Lottery (Green card)
The green card visa is administered by the U.S Citizenship and immigration Services (USCIS), it allows you to stay, work, marry, build and invest in the United States of America on a permanent basis.
They are four methods of getting a Visa into the United States of America namely;
- Family Visa
- Refugee Visa
- Employment Visa
- Diversity Lottery (Green card) Visa.
The diversity visa lottery most commonly known as the green card lottery was commissioned in 1995 as a program which offers an opportunity for Immigrants to automatically get into America, get full citizenship and enjoy all the benefits of an American citizen. The green card lottery is intended to diversify the population of people living in America; therefore, only Countries that are scarcely represented in the USA are eligible to apply.
As of 2018, an estimated 23 Million USA lottery visa application was received, but only a small amount of applicants are accepted because 55 thousand permanent residency cards are made available by the U.S government every year.
Applicants from the following continents are eligible to apply:
- North America
- South America (Central America & the Caribbean)
There are two basic requirements needed to apply for the U.S diversity lottery visa:
The applicant must have gotten a secondary school education (high school).
Two years of work experience at a job which requires two years experience training program (to determine if your work experience meets the requirement, visit www.onetonline.org, and find your occupation category).
Fewer than 1% of the applicants are chosen, an automated system randomly chooses the winners, they are expected to submit the necessary documents, and go for an interview at the U.S embassy in their home country.
The key to getting approved is usually tied to perfect timing (early application) and adhering to the rules that govern applying for a U.S diversity visa. Lottery visa application starts every October and ends November 6th.
APPLYING FOR THE USA GREEN CARD LOTTERY VISA
Only aspirants born in countries whose indigenes qualify for this visa are eligible to apply (A person born in Canada and lives in or outside Canada is not eligible for U.S visa lottery program).
Applicants from ineligible countries but have parents or spouse from an eligible country are allowed to apply provided that the applicant claims the birth country of either their spouse or parent (A Canadian who is married to a Ghanaian is eligible to apply by merely claiming the nationality of his spouse, Ghana).
Go to www.dvlottery.state.gov and select “begin entry”, and “authentication code” would display on your screen, input the code in the provided space and click “submit”.
Fill the “Entrant Information Form” and make sure every detail correctly corresponds to your documents (ensure to select an eligible country to avoid automatic disqualification and also indicate if you are using the country of your parent or spouse in the box provided).
Upload a recent and precise photograph of yourself (group photographs, blurry photographs, and edited photographs with filters or photoshop will be rejected).
Fill the “Derivatives Form” (this form should contain information about your spouse and living children under the age of 21) and also upload a recent passport photograph of your spouse. Go to www.egreencardphoto.com, upload your passport photograph and the system would automatically adjust your photograph to meet the requirements of the U.S government, download the readjusted photograph and upload in the space provided in the Visa application portal.
Review the information submitted and Print a copy for future references.
A “Submission Confirmation” page will pop up with confirmation that your entry to the Diversity Visa Program has been received and is being processed. Print this page and also take note of your “Confirmation Number” before closing the Window (this number will be needed to keep track of your application process and also find out if you have been selected to take part in the USA Diversity Lottery Program.
Applicants are to check their application status by May 5th (7 months after applying) to confirm if they have been accepted into the lottery program. Go to www.dvlottery.state.gov, scroll to the bottom and click “Check Status” and enter your “Confirmation Number” to verify if your entry has been selected.
Winning the green card lottery isn’t a guarantee that you have a green card; it grants you the chance to apply for one.
Applying for Diversity lottery visa is totally free.
Application is only online.
Immigrant Visa and Green Card are the same things, and they offer permanent residence to the holder.
Do not wear eyeglasses in your photographs.
6 Things You Should Know About Dubai Work VISA
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a conglomerate of seven emirates, and Dubai is one the seven emirates. There are no specific visas for each emirate, except in specific circumstances that are utterly related to the Work visa. The Dubai visa is also a UAE visa.
The UAE visa application forms can be downloaded from authorized visa agents and it is completely free of charge.
Below are some of the facts you should know about working in the UAE.
ANNUAL LEAVE IS A RIGHT
All workers in the UAE are entitled to leave on a public holiday, and you will be entitled to full payment on the following occasions.
- New Year celebration: One-day leave
- Islamic New Year: One-day leave
- Eid al Fitr: Two-days leave
- Eid al Adha and Arafat Day: Four-days leave
- National day: Two-days leave
- Commemoration Day: One-day leave
As a worker in the UAE, you are entitled to an annual leave every year of service no less than the following period.
Two days monthly, should the service period be of 6 months at least or 1 year at most, or one month annually should the service period exceed one year. Should the worker service be terminated, the worker will be entitled to an annual leave for the fraction of the previous year.
Remunerations are paid at the worksite and on working days, and the payment must be made in the national currency of the state. It is prohibited for employers to force employees to purchase their products. And also, workers are not required to buy food or other items from the products of the owner of certain stores.
NO EMPLOYER SHALL DENY AN EMPLOYEE MATERNITY LEAVE
In Federal law No. 8, Article No. 30 of the UAE Labour Law states as follows: “A female worker is entitled to maternity leave and with full-payment for an extended period of 45 days, which also include the period preceding and following her confinement, on a condition that the worker has been working for the employer for a period not less than one year.
However, if her period of service is less than one year, she shall be entitled to maternity leave but with half-pay
EMPLOYERS IN DUBAI ARE NOT ALLOWED TO KEEP YOUR PASSPORT
You are not required by law to hand over your passport to your employer to keep in their custody without written consent from you.
Additionally, an employer cannot fire an employee for not surrendering their passport
EMPLOYERS BEAR THE COST OF RESIDENCY VISA
According to stipulated UAE laws, employers must bear visa expenses.
An employee is not required to pay back visa expenses to employers at any time.
Regardless of why and how your contract is terminated, Visa sponsorship and cost are the sole responsibility of the employer, you are not liable to pay for this.
It is illegal and punishable by law for employers to ask for installment-based deductions for visa costs.
8 TO 9 HOURS DAILY IS THE STANDARD WORKING HOURS
The maximum number of ordinary working hours daily is 8 hours, or forty-eight hours weekly.
The number of working hours may be increased to 9 hours daily for employees working in hotels, trades, cafeterias, security and other jobs whose addition may be made by virtue of the Minister of Labour decision.
Additionally, for strenuous and harmful works the working hours may be reduced by virtue of the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs decision.
During Ramadan, the ordinary working hour shall be reduced by 2 hours. The period of commutation spent by workers from their place of residence to the worksite shall not be calculated within the working hours.
How to Get a New Zealand Student Visa
Here is all you should know to apply for a New Zealand student visa. New Zealand is often crudely stereotyped as a rugby-mad nation isolated from the rest of the world and swarming with hobbits, but, truth be told, there are a lot of reasons to give consideration to moving to a university there (and not just because you are a super-fan of Lord of the Rings).
People who DON’T require a student visa for New Zealand
If you’re a national of New Zealand or Australia, possess a New Zealand residence class visa, or possess a valid Australian permanent residence visa (encompassing a current Australian resident return visa) without conditions the visa, you do not require a student visa for New Zealand. If none of the above relates to you then you will have to apply for a New Zealand Student Visa.
People who DO require a New Zealand student visa
If you are intending to study in New Zealand for over three months and are not from New Zealand or Australia, you will require a New Zealand Student Visa.
For programs not up to three months long, you can study in New Zealand on a temporary/visitor visa. For longer programs it is compulsory that you get a student visa.
New Zealand student visa – How to apply
To submit an application for a New Zealand student visa, you can apply online or in person.
To apply in person at your home nation, you will have to get in touch with your local New Zealand embassy or consulate to obtain an application form and/or appointment. On the other hand, you can apply online by going to the official website www.immigration.govt.nz, and signing up for an account. You should submit an application at least six weeks before you plan to move to New Zealand.
Application fees vary based on your nation of origin. You will have to show:
- Admission letter from a school in New Zealand
For your New Zealand student visa application, you will be required to provide evidence of acceptance at a licensed New Zealand-based education provider.
- Evidence of sufficient funds
You will also be required to show that you have enough money to pay your tuition fees (this can comprise proof of loan coverage, scholarship award or other funds) and evidence of funds to provide for your living expenses while you study in New Zealand (through a sponsor, a scholarship, a loan, government support or sufficient bank balance). You have to prove you have a minimum of NZD$15,000 (~US$10,870) for every year if your program is longer than nine months.
- Proof of onward travel
This can be proof of already paid-for return tickets, evidence of additional funds or agreement from a sponsor to pay for return travel. The point is to prove that you plan, and can afford, to leave the nation once you conclude your studies.
- Travel insurance
This can usually be settled through your education provider.
- Medical certificates
If you are intending to study in New Zealand for over 12 months you will have to supply a general medical certificate, a chest x-ray certificate and probably go through a tuberculosis screening.
If you are under 18 years of age, you will also have to present evidence of arranged housing, and if you are 17 years of age or older, a police certificate of “good character”.
In addition to the above, you’ll also need to submit:
- Two color passport photos
- A passport valid for minimum of three months after the date you plan to leave New Zealand
- Evidence you have paid the application fee
Student visas applied for online typically take 20 days to treat, while student visas applied for through the paper form take 25 days to treat.
Can you work in New Zealand with a student visa?
Foreign full-time students with a New Zealand Student Visa are lawfully allowed to work in New Zealand for up to 20 hours each week during session, and may work full-time during all reserved holiday periods like Christmas, Easter and summer holidays. Work experience needed in your studies does not count towards the 20-hour restriction. Foreign students cannot be self-employed.
Masters by research and PhD candidates can work as many hours as they desire.
After your program, you may still be qualified to work in New Zealand, but you will have to check with the visa consultants and then apply for the relevant work visa.
For additional information about New Zealand student visas or concerning your ability to work in New Zealand, check the government’s official immigration website.
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