London borough of Camden » City Info » Visa Requirements

You need a UK visa to enter the UK. When you arrive in the UK, an immigration officer may ask you few questions, so carry all necessary documents relevant to your visit in your hand luggage.

Length of your stay in UK

Visitors can stay in the UK for a maximum of 6 months, except academic visitors and the parents of children at school who can stay for up to 12 months.

Types of Visas

Short-stay UK visas – valid for anything from 24 hours to up to six months

Non-immigrant visas – temporary visas for studying or working on a fixed-term temporary contract

Immigrant visas – for those who want to stay in the UK long-term or permanently

1. General Visitors
General visitors include visitors who want to travel to the UK as tourists or visit their family and friends. For applying for a visa, you must prove that you intend to stay not more than six months and leave the UK at the end of your visit. Also, you must have enough money to support yourself and live in the UK without any support from public funds or a job.

2. Business Visitors
If you are employed abroad but want to visit the UK for short periods to undertake business-related activities, you may be eligible to do so as a business visitor. Business travellers should be based abroad and not intend to transfer their base to the UK temporarily. As a business visitor, the maximum permitted stay is of six months.

3. Academic Visitors
A person can visit the UK as an academic visitor provided he is on sabbatical (paid) leave from an overseas academic institution. The maximum permitted stay as an academic visitor is 12 months.

4. Sports Visitors
Sports visitors can travel to the UK as a sportsperson or are members of the technical or support staff of amateur or professional sports or an official attending the same event or series of events.

5. Entertainer Visitors
The entertainer visa has been designed for those coming to the UK for a short time to participate in art festivals, music competitions, charity events etc.

6. Special Visitors
Special visitors are those who travel to the UK for the following purposes:
* for private medical treatment
* for getting married
* Parents of children at school in the UK
* child visitors
* student visitors
* prospective students
* visitors in transit

Visa Requirements

  • A fully completed application form

  • Your passport or travel document

  • Visa application fee. (non-refundable)

  • Recent passport-sized (45mm x 35mm), colour photograph. This should be:

    • taken against a light-coloured background
    • clear and of good quality, and not framed or backed
    • printed on normal photographic paper, and
    • full face and without sunglasses, hat or other head covering unless you wear this for cultural or religious reasons (but the face must not be covered).
  • Any supporting documents relevant to your application.

Supporting Documents

  • Bank statements, payslips, or some other evidence to show that you can pay for the trip and you have enough money to support yourself and any dependants without working or getting any help from public funds. Evidence that you intend to leave the UK at the end of your visit (for example, a letter from your employer).

If you are visiting family or friends you will need:

  • letter from your sponsorer (the person you are visiting) explaining your relationship with them and the purpose of your visit
  • copy of the bio-data page (the page containing their photograph) of their UK passport or, if they are not a UK national, evidence of their immigration status in the United Kingdom

If your sponsorer is supporting you during your visit or paying for the cost of the visit, you will need:

  • payslips, bank statements, or some other evidence to show that they have enough money to support you.

How long will my visa be valid for?

Generally, visit visas are valid for six months. But it can be issued for a longer period of 1, 2, 5 or 10 years.

For more information, contact Gov.UK

Please note: The information contained on this website is for general information purposes only. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. Please contact your nearest embassy for accurate, up-to-date information.