What is the process for getting a visa to travel to other countries from the UK?
The citizens of the United Kingdom are allowed to visit 187 countries without a visa. They can also move around freely in other European countries for around 90 days without a visa.
However, UK citizens would need a visa to travel to other countries. Read this article to understand better the process of getting a visa in the United Kingdom for other countries.
Eligibility of getting or Applying Travel Visa in the UK
You are required to have a valid United Kingdom residence permit for more than three months beyond when you plan to visit the other country if you want a visa in the United Kingdom. This residence permit is crucial in getting your visa as you would be rejected immediately at the consulate where you apply for a visa if you don’t have the permit.
If you are not a United Kingdom citizen, you cannot apply for a visa for another country in the United Kingdom. You need to apply for another country’s visa in your own country through the respective channels and consulates.
You can extend your United Kingdom residence permit by another three months to apply for a visa for another country while staying in the United Kingdom.
Required documents for a visa from the United Kingdom
Many embassies and consulates are present in the United Kingdoms of different countries. You need to find the embassy or consulate of the country you want to visit. Different countries have different requirements for a visa and the type of visa you apply for.
However, there are some common requirements for applying to various countries for a visa from the United Kingdom. You must ensure you have the following documents before applying for a visa to travel to another country.
- You must have a valid passport or a valid travel document. You must ensure that your passport has not expired and was issued in the last 10 years before applying for a visa. Your passport must have at least 2 blank pages for a visa stamp and a share page. It should be valid for at least three months after you leave the country of your choice.
- An application form is provided at the embassy with all the necessary information filled out accurately.
- You must have proof of citizenship. A valid residence permit can be used for this purpose.
- You need a passport-sized photo that shows all your features clearly against a bright background. This needs to go on the application form.
- You need to write a cover letter explaining your reason for visiting the country.
- You need to show some proof about your travel arrangements such as a round trip flight booking. You need to list your traveling arrangements if you wish to travel to different states during your stay in another country.
- Travel insurance is a must as you might get injured or stolen when you visit another country. The amount of insurance varies for different countries.
- You need to show proof of your hotel reservations in the country you want a visa.
- You are required to submit your recent bank statements to prove that you have enough funds to spend in the country you are traveling to.
- All the documents should be no more than 1 month old, and their photocopies are required too.
Documents Required for Visa as an employee in the UK
- Reference letter from your employer in the United Kingdom with details such as your salary, date of joining, position, and vacation dates.
- If you haven’t been working for more than 3 months, your employer needs to state clearly when you started to work for them.
Documents for international students studying in the United Kingdoms
- You need a recent letter from their University or school within the United Kingdom clearly stating their attendance record, type of course, and details about their studies.
- The letter must be less than 3 months old.
Documents for an unemployed spouse of a UK citizen
- Proof of your spouse’s employment states the date they started working and the position they hold.
- Valid passport of your spouse.
- A translated version of your marriage certificate. Suppose your marriage certificate was issued outside the United Kingdom. In that case, you must get a stamp from the Foreign Office of the country where you got your certificate or their embassy in the United Kingdom.
When and where to apply for a visa in The UK?
It is advisable to apply for a visa at least 15 days before you plan on visiting the country. You can even apply earlier than 15 days to be safer since the process can be long and confusing.
However, you must ensure not to apply more than 6 months before your travel date. You can only apply before 6 months if you have a multi-entry visa, and you need to renew it before it expires.
It would help if you had clear purposes for visiting another country and a plan about how long you will stay there. Depending on these two factors, you need to choose where to apply for a visa.
If you are only visiting one country, you should apply for a visa at their embassy in the United Kingdom with the relevant documents. If you plan on staying in another country for more than 90 days, you must apply for a long-stay visa or a residence permit instead of a normal travel visa.
It is much more complicated and challenging to get a residence permit. If you are an Indian citizen staying in the United Kingdom for more than three months but hold an Indian passport, you can apply for a visa to another country from the United Kingdom.
Applying for a visa for different countries has different requirements. You must carefully read and understand the requirements before applying for a visa. The fees are affordable for most countries, and the process is mostly similar as well.
You need to have the documents stated above and follow the few tips given to obtain a visa to visit another country from the United Kingdom.