Learn About The UK Tourist VISA And How To Apply

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UK Tourist VISA

The UK Tourist or Standard Visitor VISA, is a UK short stay VISA, made for those that wishes to travel to the United Kingdom for purposes of Tourism, Visit family members, medical treatment and for professional reasons.

It allows applicants to stay in the UK for up to 6 months, but the embassy can issue VISAs for a shorter period of time.

Check Out The List of Countries That Can Apply for The UK Tourist VISA

UK Tourist VISA | How To Apply

You should apply for a UK Tourist VISA for about 30 days, before the date of your travel to the UK, and it must be done outside the UK.

Easy Steps To Follow When Applying The UK Tourist VISA
  1. Confirm your eligibility for the tourist VISA
  2. Complete the online application form
  3. Collect all required documents
  4. Schedule an appointment
  5. Attend the interview.
Documents You Will Need For The UK Tourist VISA Application
  • UK tourist VISA application form VAF1A; You should complete the form online.
  • Two photographs in accordance with the UK guidelines; They should be taken within the past six months and be in color.
  • Your valid passport with at least one blank page; It must be valid for three more months beyond the date you plan to leave the UK after your trip.
  • Proof of financial means to cover living costs while you are in the UK; This may be your bank statements for the last six months or pay slips for the same period.
  • Specifics about your accommodation in the UK; You will need to present a document that shows where you will be accommodated while in the UK. Note that you do not have to fully pay a hotel/hostel in UK before getting the VISA, just to get such a document. This could also be:
    • ID information and living address of a person covering your travel costs.
    • ID information and passport number of any relative living in the UK.
  • Detailed travel itinerary; It has to contain dates of your onward and backward travel. Submit a travel plan that gives all the information, regarding how and what you are planning to do in the UK. Include the travel dates, places you will visit, meeting agenda, booked tour, festival agenda, etc.
  • Previous travel history; This has to cover the period of the last 10 years. It can be proven through VISAs and entry/exit border stamps in current and older passports, or through separate residence titles.
  • Specifics about your living address in your Home Country. Also, you’ve to show how long you’ve been living there.
  • Biometric information; If you are applying for a VISA that lets you stay in UK for more than 6 months; you will need to submit your biometric information. This includes giving your fingerprints and a digital photograph taken at the appropriate application center.
  • Letter of invitation from the Host.
  • Paid UK VISA fees. You should submit the receipt that confirms you have paid the VISA fee as required.
  • Certified translations of any document that is not in either English or Welsh.
  • Recognized certificate of English language.
  • Your criminal history.
  • If you are a student: Academic and professional certificates.
  • The names and birthdates of your natural/adoptive parents. This has to be supported by information about the number of their annual earnings.
  • If you are employed in your Home Country: Contact and information of your existing employer.
  • Tuberculosis Test Results. Nationals of several world countries will need to submit the requests of a Tuberculosis Test in order to be eligible for a UK VISA.

Read: UK Immigration VISA | See How To Apply For Free

You can download the application form VAF1A here https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/589170/VAF1-visitandshorttermstay.pdf

Other Documents You Will Need To Submit Depending On Your Purpose Of Visit

UK Tourist VISA Application

If you’re an Academic, who is expecting to complete an exchange or research project in the UK:

  • Formal letter of a Home-Country employer; It must show you’ve been given the authorization to leave the current job for an exchange or research project in the UK. It has to show dates of such approved leave.
  • Formal letter of the host institution/organization in the UK. It must show in written they’ve made the needed arrangements for the specified exchange or research project.

If you’re expecting to take private medical treatment in the UK:

  • Letter confirming your medical condition. Issued by a UK doctor/consultant, naming your disease and the need for the cure in the UK. It has to also show costs, place and the period of private cure.
  • Proof of having paid the complete costs of medical care.
  • Letter confirming you need further care. (If you’re applying for a VISA extension). Issued by a UK doctor/consultant confirming you need further treatment of the disease. It must be accompanied with documents showing you have got the money to pay costs of such treatment.

If you’re expecting to give your organ to a person in need in the UK:

  • Letter, naming you as a donor match or the need for getting tested as a potential donor match. It must be issued by the main nurse/director of the UK’s NHS Trust’s Living Donor Kidney Transplant Team, or a registered doctor as an NHS consultant. It has to show details of when and where the tests or transplant will take place.
  • Proof of residence in the UK of the organ recipient. Your organ recipient’s photocopied British passport, or UK valid residence permit.
  • Proof that the organ recipient will be in the UK before transplantation date. (If the organ recipient is out of the UK). Details of their travel to the UK, their name, nationality and their date of birth.

Read: How To Apply For The UK Business VISA

If you’re visiting with the intention to become a UK Entrepreneur in the Future:

  • Support letter from venture capital firms in the UK. The firm issuing it must be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
  • Letter of support from an endorsed UK entrepreneurial seed funding competition.
  • Supportive letter from UK departments.

If you’re expecting to attend a Professional Training/Assessment:

  • Confirmation letter for an arranged PLAB or OSCE test. (If you’re expecting to sit a PLAB/OSCE test). It must be issued by a General Medical Council & Nursing and Midwifery Council, confirming that the test has been arranged.
  • Formal job offers as a clinician/dental observer (If applicable). It must not be a gainful job and you must not have worked before in the same job position.

Check Out The Work-related Activities You Can Do With A UK Tourist VISA

Tourist Sites in the UK

  • Participate in a conference, regular meeting, or training, or in a sport-related event;
  • As an artist to perform in an artistic, entertaining, or music activity;
  • As an academic to do a research study;
  • As academic accompanying students who are about to enroll in Foreign Studies Programme;
  • Engage in a clinical duty, or in a job as an observer, doctor or dentist;
  • Undertake a test of the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB), or of the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE);
  • Undertake a test of the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB), or of the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE).

Note: The UK Standard visitor VISA application might take 8 weeks to process.

Read: Requirements And Guidelines To Apply For Student VISA To Canada

How Much Will I Pay For The UK Tourist VISA

Application for the UK Tourist VISA cost £89. But Private medical treatments given for 6 up to 11 months and academic researches for up to 1 year will be £179.

However, Long-term VISA for 2 years is £337, For 5 years is £612, for 10 years is £769, while the cost of applying for an extension through the post is £993, and £1,583 for an application in person.

Can I Stay For More Than Six Months In UK With A Tourist VISA?

If you’re a traveler under an ADS agreement, you will stay at most 30days.

If you’re traveling for Tourism or family visit, you will stay up to 6 months.

You can stay up to 11 months, only if you are traveling for Private medical treatment. If you are on academic research Project in the UK, you can stay up to 12 months.

Read: How To Apply For A Canada Business VISA

Do You Wish To Have A UK Long-term Standard Visitor VISA?

Tourist VISA for UK

The UK long-term Standard visitor VISA is issued to people who travel regularly to the UK for Temporary visits, it is valid for period of 2, 5 up to 10 years.

You can apply if you provide
  • Evidence of regular temporary visits to the UK.
  • Proof of intention to leave the UK at the end of the VISA period.
  • Confirmation that you won’t change the reason for which you’re requiring the VISA.

Note: You can extend your UK Standard Visitor VISA if

  • You’re sitting the PLAB examination for the second time.
  • You want to engage in a clinical duty after having passed PLAB examination.
  • You’re an academic completing a research project.
  • You’re on Private Medical treatment.


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