A Subtle Introduction to UK Visitor Visa

UK visitor visa, which is known as ‘Standard Visitor visa’ as well, is being granted to those people who want to visit the United Kingdom for a short temporary duration of up to 6 months maximum. UK visitor visa is basically categorised under the ‘UK short-term visa’ which is intended for granting entry consent to its holders into the UK on temporary basis for the time span ranging from 6 to 12 months variably according to the specified sort of UK short-term visa one is applying for. There might be different objectives behind this temporary visit via UK standard visitor visa including visiting family members residing in the UK, professional work, medical treatment and tourism purposes. UK Standard Visitor visa has utterly superseded all the kind of formerly used visas for these purposes and has come out to be a single and standard route for visiting the UK on a temporary visit. The formerly used visas include the following:

  • General Visitor visa
  • Family Visitor visa
  • Child Visitor visa
  • Sports Visitor visa
  • Prospective Entrepreneur visa
  • Business Visitor visa, including visas for academics, doctors and dentists
  • Private Medical Treatment Visitor visa
  • Entertainer Visitor visa
  • Approved Destination Status (ADS) visa

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    What liabilities does a UK visitor visa offer?

    There are certain departments in which a UK visitor visa holder is allowed to get involved in, which may include any of the following:

    • For research related studies in case of UK visitor visa holder being an academic visitor
    • Being academically associated students to be enrolled in FSP (Foreign Studies Programme)
    • For performing any activity in art, music or entertainment industry if the UK visitor visa holder is an artist
    • For event participation regarding sports, general training or meeting and conferences
    • For taking PLAB (Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board) or OSCE (Objective Structured Clinical Examination) test
    • Being involved in any sort of clinical liability as doctor, dentist or even observer

    However, there are certain basic facilities that are denied to the UK visitor visa holders as they are not permitted to utilise public funds, medical facilities that are usually allowed to only UK citizens, acquiring any voluntary job or getting confidentially involved in marriage or civil partnership with any UK citizen there unless they apply for ‘Marriage Visitor Visa’.

    UK visitor visa processing:

    The applicant of UK visitor visa must apply 30 days prior to making an application on the least and that too from being outside the UK. There are certain stages to pass through in order to successfully apply for a standard visitor visa that may invariably include:

    1. Confirm the fulfilment of eligibility criteria for being able to apply for the UK standard visa.
    2. Complete the documentation requirement after filling out the UK visitor visa application form via online service.
    3. Join in the final interview after going through a crucial meeting arrangement step.

    Generally required documents for UK visitor visa:

    Well, the essential and basic documentation regarding the approval of the UK visitor visa application includes:

    • The online application form for the UK visitor visa along with valid passport and recent pictures in accordance with the guidelines provided by the UK immigration agency.
    • You may also need to submit your payslips or bank statements in order to validate the financial security you own regarding your short-term visit in the UK.
    • You would have to provide your accommodation details while residing in the UK along with a document converged at the extensive details of your travel itinerary in the form of a complete travelling plan including the time of arrival in the UK, purpose, general agenda and sites of your visit in the UK and time of return.
    • The other requirements for UK standard visa are travel history record, invitation letter conferred by the host, biometric information, criminal history, paid UK visa fee, residency details of hometown along with some basic data regarding your parents whether natural or adoptive.
    • In case of being a student, you would need to submit professional and academic record while you may have to provide your employer’s details if you are employed in order to attain UK visitor visa.
    • There are certain countries included in the list of those from which immigrants must submit their tuberculosis (TB) test report with some exceptions. You can only get eligible for attaining UK visit visa in case of having negative TB report.

    Specific documentation required according to the particular purpose:

    • You would need to submit formal letters from your native-country employer as well as UK host organisation in case of being an academic UK visitor visa applicant going to UK for some research or exchange programme.
    • If you are visiting the UK with the intention of getting some private medical treatment, you would have to submit the letters verifying your medical state and referring you for further curative management along with evidences regarding the complete payment of the whole medical treatment expenses.
    • Whereas in case of having a temporary visit to the UK with the purpose of donating any body organ to a UK resident, you would have to submit the verifying documents for being a donor match in addition to the basic details of the organ recipient prominently including his residence and presence in the UK during the transplantation period.
    • In case of being a potential UK entrepreneur, you would have to provide the support letters from the UK venture capital firms, seed funding competitions based on UK entrepreneurship and certain other UK departments.
    • If you are visiting UK for professional assessment or training programme, you ought to provide endorsing letter for a planned OSCE or PLAB test and formal job offer letter referring to clinical services if any.

    Time duration for processing of the UK visitor visa application:

    If you are applying for the UK visitor visa via post by using standard package, it usually takes 8 weeks to get the response. However, the time span may extend in case of providing insufficient documents. Also, you may use premium package in order to get an immediate response about your standard visitor visa within a day.

    Stay duration allowed in the UK via UK visitor visa:

    There are certainly different categories regarding stay duration of your visit in the UK on the grounds of the standard visitor visa as following:

    • Being a traveler under the ADS agreement, you may be allowed to stay in the UK for 30 days maximally.
    • Being a tourist traveler or in case of having family reunion concerns, you get to avail 6 months stay in the UK.
    • You may be allowed to acquire stay duration of up to 11 months and up to 12 months in case of undergoing a private medical treatment and conducting an academic research programme respectively.

    Long-term UK visitor visa:

    It is the kind of visa you may require in order to possess a visiting permit to the UK on temporary basis ranging from 2, 5 or up to 10 years of duration so that you would be allowed to visit the UK frequently but temporarily in this specified time period depending on the need of regular visits. For this long-term UK visitor visa, you would have to provide certain essential documents that include evidence of intention to leave the UK after completion of the permitted time period and of regular visits to the UK and having a constant cause for UK visitor visa requirement. The fee for long-term UK visitor visa application varies with the time period you want to acquire this visa for. It would be £361 for 2-years duration, £655 for 5-years duration and £822 for 10-years duration in accordance with the most recent information provided on the official website of the UK government.


    What is the UK visitor visa?

    UK visitor visa is a sort of UK short-term visa required for those people who intend to stay in the UK on temporary basis usually up to 6 months for different purposes.

    Which activities are not allowed for UK visitor visa holder?

    UK visitor visa holder is not allowed to be facilitated from public funds, voluntary job of any kind, publically available medical care, marriage or civil partnership with any UK citizen.

    Who needs a long-term UK visitor visa?

    Those people who need to keep visiting UK regularly for a certainly allocated time period e.g. 2 years, 5 years or 10 years would have to apply for long-term UK visitor visa in accordance with their requirement.

    What are the possible reasons for refusal of the UK visitor visa?

    There are various possible reasons behind refusal of UK visitor visa including insufficient details regarding your purpose of visit, previous immigration and travelling history, incomplete documentation, absence of financial security and accommodation details during your stay in the UK etc.