You are going to visit the UK but don’t know whether you need a UK visa or not. It can seem a bit tricky, especially after Brexit. But it is easier than you think.
This article will explain whether you need a visa or not and explain a guaranteed way to make sure of it.
Who Needs a UK visa?
Whether you need a UK visa or not depends on:
- The lengths of your stay
- Your nationality
- The reason or purpose of your trip
The above factors have an impact on whether you need a visa or not.
The duration of your stay
There are a short-stay and long-stay for the UK visa. Providing that you stay in the country for up to six months, it is a short-stay. When you stay for longer than six months, it is long-stay. Determine the lengths of your stay before doing anything.
A few nationalities do not need a UK visa for short-stay. At the same time, almost anyone needs a UK visa for long-stays. You can see the below section to make sure you need a visa or not. If you are exempt from the UK short-stay visa, you must have a valid passport or valid travel document.
The purpose of your visit
When you need a UK visa for short-stays, it must be compatible with your visit’s purpose. The purpose of the visit could be:
- Visiting friends and family
Bear in mind that the visa you choose must fit the purpose of your visit.
The following countries need a visa for short-stays in the UK:
|Andorra||EEA members||Monaco||Vatican City|
|EU members||EFTA members||San Marino|
|Antigua and Barbuda||Dominica||Nicaragua|
|Barbados||Grenada||Saint Kitts and Nevis|
|Canada||Honduras||Saint Vincent and the Grenadines|
|Costa Rica||Mexico||United States of America|
|Australia||Papua New Guinea|
|Marshall Islands||Solomon Islands|
|Argentina||Chile||Trinidad and Tobago|
If you are from one of the above countries, then you need a visa for short-stays. The length of your stay isn’t important. You need a visa even to stay for one day.
Who does not need a UK visa?
The UK was part of the EU. Brexit has caused a few confusion over visa rules for the UK. But it is still part of the Schengen agreement. But the EU nationals still are exempt from the UK short-stay visa. The rules might change or stay the same after January 1, 2021. Until then, the EU nationals do not need a short-stay visa.
The following countries are free of the UK short-stay visa for now:
|Bahrain||Iran||Mongolia||Russia||The United Arab Emirates (UAE)|
|Bhutan||Jordan||North Korea||Sri Lanka||Vietnam|
|The Central African Republic||Guinea Bissau||Niger||Uganda|
|The Democratic Republic of the Congo||Lesotho||Sao Tome & Principe|
How to make 100% sure you need a UK visa?
There is another way to know whether you need a UK visa. It is different from the mentioned above way. We can call it the most guaranteed way.
You can visit the UK government’s officials website to know whether you need a visa or not. Working with this site can seem a bit complicated. So read the following guideline.
When you enter the site, there is a box that you can pick your country. Choose the country you live in. if you have dual citizenship, pick the country that you will travel with its passport.
You have to choose the purpose of your visit to the next step. There are different options. So you have to get one that fits the purpose of your visit.
Then the duration of your stay comes in. It is:
- Up to six month
- Longer than six months
Choose the lengths of time that first with your stay. Now the site will tell you whether you need a visa or not. If not, you can enter the UK with your passport. If not, apply for the visa that is compatible with your trip’s purpose.
Who Needs a UK visa for long-stays?
Almost anyone needs a UK visa for long-stays. By long-stay I mean staying longer than six months. The type of visa you need depends on the purpose of the visit. It could be work, study, etc.
If you don’t need a visa for long-stays, you have to get a Residence Permit. You must get it when you are inside the country.
Let’s sum up…
This article explained whether you need a visa or not. You can find out whether you need a UK visa for short-stay. Also, it covered how to make sure you need a UK visa or not.
If you want to know more about other UK visas, visit the left-sidebar.
In case you need to know about other country’s visas, go to the Visa Library’s home page.
Visa applicants would appreciate it if you write your experience as comments in the section below.