If you are planning on travelling to UK for work and study, there are basic information you ought to have at your fingertips with regards to their visa application. United Kingdom is not a country that accepts every Dick and Harry. In other words, to travel to UK, you will need to prove your worth to contribute to her economy.
Therefore, the visa application for a UK to work and study is different depending on your country. UK is a country that is part of the European Economic Area (EEA). The EEA comprise of the 28 countries in the European Union (EU) and the countries in the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).
These countries under the EEA have same right to work and study around UK and will not require visa for migration. For foreigners from Non-EEA countries, You will require to pass through the UK Point Based System (PBS) to get a visa. You will get the necessary information below on how to apply.
UK PBS awards points to applicants based on their potentials and ability to contribute to the growth of the country. In the system, Age, Academic qualification, English proficiency and your financial status contributes to the success of your visa application.
Importantly, there are 5 different tiers of visa with their subcategories in the UK for work and study visa.
The 5 tiers of UK Visa
The UK tier system is for grading applicants who wish to migrate to United Kingdom. Applicants must score a minimum number of points on an assessment test to be eligible for a visa depending on the tier. The grading is dependent on performance in English fluency, Academic qualifications e.t.c.
Tier 1 UK visa
This category is for highly skilled individuals, Graduate entrepreneurs and Entrepreneurs who are ready to invest in the productivity of UK. This tier can apply directly for a visa without a sponsorship certificate.
To qualify as an investor under tier 1, you will have to be ready to invest £2,000,000.
Tier 2 UK Visa
This type of visa is for “Skilled workers” migrating to UK for work. Tier 2 visa applicants will require a visa sponsorship certification or invitation from an employer from UK before applying for a visa.
The job opportunities in this categories are;
- General visa – For individuals with offer of medium to high job offers.
- Intra-Company Transfer Visa – This route offers overseas companies to transfer medium or highly skilled staff to the same UK based organization.
- Ministers of Religion Visa – This type of visa for the clergy and those on pastoral works in the UK.
- Sportsperson Visa – This route applies to individuals who are into sports and also coaches who wish to take up a job in UK.
Tier 3 UK visa
This category was designed for low-skilled workers filling specific temporary labor shortages within the UK. But, the UK government said there is no longer need for that since the citizens can take the position.
Tier 4 UK visa
The tier 4 route is for adults and children from Non-EEA countries that wish to further their education in the United Kingdom. This tier covers both colleges and Universities.
Tier 5 UK visa
This category is for temporary workers, including creative and sporting, charity, religious workers. The applicants under this category are not allowed to stay more than six months in UK.
General requirements for a UK visa
When you are planning to travel to UK for the purpose of work or study. There are some documents you will need to have handy to facilitate your visa application process. In this post, I will give you an insight of documents you need to have. Meanwhile, you can visit the embassy for additional information.
English Language Proficiency Test
Your level of English proficiency is very important when you are aspiring to travel to UK for work or study. The reason for the English proficiency test is to make sure that you can communicate in your work place or school.
Therefore, the test will assess your reading, writing, speaking and listening proficiency. The cumulative determines your score. Nonetheless, the grade requirement differs with regards to your type of work or level of education. Examples of English proficiency tests widely accepted in UK are the IELTS and the TOEFL.
On the contrary, natives of English countries or individuals who studied in a school where English is the official language are not to provide the English proficiency test results.
A visa invitation certificate
Travelling to UK will only be possible if you have an invitation from a citizen or a resident in the country aside from the Tier 1 visa category.
For students, you will need an invitation from an accredited institution in the country with a prove of admission before proceeding for a visa.
For job in UK, it is the responsibility of the employer who will serve as your sponsor to send you the sponsorship certificate that will enable you file a visa.
Proof of Financial stability
During your interview at embassy, you will need to convince the embassy that you can take care of yourself financially and not become a burden to the UK community. You can do this by providing a current bank statement or investments in your home country that will prove you are financially stable.
Valid passport or ID
To be eligible for a visa, your travelling passport have to be valid and current. You will need to have a blank space in the passport for stamping. Nonetheless, some embassies may require you show your expired passports in addition for reference purposes.
Other additional documents
These documents will depend on your reason for travelling. If it is for study purpose, you will need to provide your academic credentials such as certificates, Transcript, Scholarship documents (if applicable).
For work in UK, the embassy may require a work experience certificate, a criminal record certificate( for some sensitive jobs) and other personal documents.
Note; Any document that is written in a language aside from English is to be translated and attached with the original document.
UK visa application process
Below is a step by step guide on how to go about your UK work or study visa. If you encounter any difficulty online, you can talk to the UK embassy in your country or visit their official website for clarification.
To start the Visa application, you will need to visit the UK official website to register a user account. Take your time to double check the type of visa that suits your travel intention.
Fill out the online application form and generate the the GWF number with barcode. Print the confirmatory page and the GWR code. It is this code that will show your application details when put in a machine. The next thing is to book an appointment with a visa application center in your country.
Note: The GWR number becomes invalid if applicant fails to finalize the application within 30 days.
Register your details on the TLScontact website. If you don’t register, you will not be allowed to attend your appointment. You can track your application on the TLScontact website after you have registered.
Attend your appointment and submit your biometrics at a UK Visa Application Center. One of the important thing to keep in mind when attending your visa appointment is that you have to be there early, at least one hour before official time.
The following documents are important for your visa interview;
- Your passport or ID
- Certificate of English proficiency test
- Bank statements (not longer than 3 months till the date of interview)
- A sponsorship certificate or invitation letter.
- Printed copies of your online application form and appointment confirmation
- Receipt of payment of visa fees
- Other Supporting documents such as academic qualifications
Wait for your visa application to be processed. You will be able to track your visa application on the TLScontact website. When the visa is ready, you will receive a message to pick it up at the application center.
If you wish to get more information on UK work and visa, you can visit the UK official website now.