Guide on How to Apply for a UK Visa in 2022

Guide on How to Apply for a UK Visa in 2022

uk visa

Before you can apply for UK visa, you need to follow the right procedure. The UK has a lot of opportunities for people who are willing to take the risk and move there. The UK is one of the most popular destinations for people who want to study, work or retire.

The UK is one of the best countries in the world when it comes to living standards, healthcare, education and employment. There are many reasons why you should consider applying for a visa if you have never done so before.

The UK is one of the most popular destinations for immigrants because of its favorable immigration policies. You just need to know what documents you need and how to apply.

How to Apply for a UK Visa

If you are looking for a UK visa, it is important that you follow the right steps

1. Choose the Right UK Visa Type

In the UK, there are many different types of visa for business, education and tourism. Some visas allow you to visit the UK for a specific period of time, while others allow you to stay indefinitely.

There are various visas available depending on:

Reason for Coming to the UK

Types of UK visa you can apply for depending on the purpose of your visit

1. Visitor Visas

Also known as short stay visa, they are for visitors from outside the EU and it allow people to stay in the UK for up to 6 months. The embassy, on the other hand, has the authority to grant visas for a shorter period of time. And you might be able to apply to stay for longer period based on certain circumstances.

This visa is for persons who want to visit the United Kingdom for the following reasons:

To Visit a Relative/Spouse

2. Study Visas

It is designed for international students who want to study at a higher education institution in the UK.Applicants must have been accepted by an institution that sponsors international students before they can apply for this type of visa.

Types of Study Visa

Here are the two types of Study Visa

* Short Term Study Visa

You can apply for a short-term study visa if you are doing a short course in the UK. This visa allows you to study for 6 months in the UK, or 11 months if you are taking an English language course.

To be eligible for a short-term study visa you must prove:

  • That you have been granted admission at a recognized institution in the UK (The Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) is issued by the institution as proof)
  • You have sufficient funds to meet your study expenditures as well as your living expenses for the duration of your studies.
  • You can pay for your return journey.

* Tier 4 UK Student Visa (General)

To study in the UK, the majority of international students from outside the EU will require a Tier 4 (General) student visa. You can apply if you are 16 or older and meet the following criteria:

  • Letter of acceptance for a recognized institution in the UK (The Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) is issued by the institution as proof)
  • You have a good command of the English language, including reading, writing, and speaking.
  • Proof of sufficient funds for all your study expenses for the duration of your program

* A Child Student visa

This visa is for children aged 4 to 17 who want to attend a private school. You can work on this visa if you’re 16 or older.

* Standard Visa

A Standard Visitor visa lets you do a short course of study that lasts no longer than 6 months.

Course Requirements for UK Student Visas

If you have been accepted into one of the following courses, you can apply for a Student Visa in the United Kingdom:

  • A full-time course that does not lead to a degree (more than 15 hours per week of study). This covers A levels (essentially the last two years of high school), apprenticeships, or the first two years of a Bachelor’s degree, and is referred to as the RQF level 3, 4, or 5.
  • A full-time program leading to a bachelor’s degree or a higher-level qualification. Levels 6, 7, and 8 of the RQF are included (Bachelor, Postgraduate, Masters, or Doctorate degree).
  • A part-time degree program at a level higher than RQF 7 (Postgraduate, Masters, or Doctorate degree).
  • A program for postgraduate doctors or dentists that has been approved.
  • An English language course (level B2 or higher) in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL)

3. Work Visa

This is the most common type of visa in the UK and it is also know as long term visa. It is suitable for professionals and skilled workers with a job offer from an employer in the UK. Applicants must have a valid certificate of sponsorship from their employer before they can apply for a Tier 2 visa. This type of visa allows people to stay in the UK for more than 6 months.

  • Tier 1 Post Study Work Visa
  • Tier 2 General
  • Tier 2 Intra Company Transfer
  • Tier 2 Minister Religion
  • Tier 2 Sportsperson
  • Tier 5 Temporary Worker
  • Youth Mobility Scheme

4. Business Visa

The United Kingdom is a place where business is always booming, attracting foreign entrepreneurs and investors.

Due to the great interest of business persons in visiting or settling in the United Kingdom, there are several types of UK business visas available:

  • Standard visitor visa for business owner.
  • Innovator visa.
  • Start-up visa.
  • Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa
  • Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa
  • Tier 1 Investor visa
  • Representative of an Overseas Business visa

5. Family Visas.

UK family visas are a type of entry and residence permit that is issued to individuals who wish to build a permanent family life with their UK-based relatives.

There are a few options for obtaining a UK family visa:

As the spouse or partner of a British citizen.
As a parent of a British citizen.
As the offspring of a British citizen.
As a sick, crippled, or elderly relative in need of long-term care from a resident of the United Kingdom.
On the basis of one’s private life.
As the widowed partner of a former resident of the United Kingdom.
As a divorced or separated partner or spouse.


if you are if you are on the basis of the following condition you are not eligible:

  • If you’re already in the UK holding the UK work visa or a UK temporary study visa
  • You’re in the UK on a UK visiting visa that’s only valid for 6 months or less.
  • The regulation does not apply if you are applying for a UK tourist marriage visa or if you are awaiting a final court decision in a family or divorce case.

Types of Family Visa

* Spouse Visa

The United Kingdom Spouse Visa is for people who desire to join their spouse or other partner in the UK who is a British citizen, a settled person, a refugee, or under humanitarian protection.

Either a marriage, a long-term relationship, or a civil partnership must exist between you and your partner.

* Parent Visa

The United Kingdom Parents of British nationals, settled persons, or people who have lived in the UK for at least 7 years are eligible for a Parent Visa.

To be eligible for this visa, your kid must be under the age of 18 or have been under the age of 18 when you initially applied for a UK family visa.

* Child Dependent Visa

The United Kingdom child visa is granted to the children of a UK resident.

You must be a dependent child living in the UK with your parent who is applying for a UK visa or an extension of stay in the UK together with you.

* Adult Dependent visa

The Adults in Need of Care by a Relative Visa is issued for the purpose of receiving long-term care from a relative who is a British citizen, established person, refugee, or under humanitarian protection in the United Kingdom. The person in need of this form of care must be at least 18 years old and suffering from a disability or illness, or a person with a medical ailment or who has attained old age.

6. Settlement Visas

A UK settlement visa allows you to live, work, and study in the UK with few restrictions in the future.

If you have been in the UK for five years or more on a different form of visa, such as a work, study, or business visa, you can apply for a UK settlement visa. If you are from the EEA or Switzerland and have lived here for the same amount of time, you can also apply for settlement.

7. Transit Visas

The UK Transit visa enables its holder to transit through the UK to reach their destination country.This visa is only for non-EEA and non-Swiss nationals.

You will need the UK transit visa if:

On your route to another country, you will change flight in the United Kingdom.
You’ll pass through UK border control to check in your luggage for a connecting flight, for example.
You’ll be out of the UK in less than 48 hours.

if you hold the following documents will you be excluded from obtaining a UK Transit Visa:

  • European Economic Area family permit
  • Home Office travel document, for example you’re a refugee or stateless person
  • UK Standard Visitor visa
  • UK Marriage Visitor visa

Types of UK Transit Visa Type

There are two sorts of UK Transit Visas, each of which has its own set of rules, criteria, and requirements:

* United Kingdom Direct Airside Transit visa

If you will change flights in the UK on your way to your destination country but will not pass through border control, you will need to apply for a UK Direct Airside Transit visa.

NB: You will need to apply for a different form of visitor’s visa if your destination country is Ireland, the Channel Islands, or the Isle of Man.

* United Kingdom Visitor in Transit visa

If you need to go through UK border control, check in your luggage for a connecting flight, or something similar when transiting the UK, you’ll need to apply for a UK Visitor in Transit visa.

2. Prepare Your Application

Usually you apply and pay visas online. If you want to bring dependants to the UK with you, each individual must apply and pay separately.

All fees are paid online, so as part of your preparations, check with your bank or card issuer to make sure that your account is set up to accept international payments as well as payments in GBP. Because this is a common issue for people applying for a UK visa from Nigeria and other African countries, not all bank accounts and credit cards have this capability as standard, so it’s important to check.

Unfortunately, you cannot pay the UK visa fees in any other way than online, so if you do not have a suitable payment card, you should consider other options, such as:

  • Requesting a trusted friend or family member to pay your online UK visa fee on your behalf purchasing a pre-paid credit card with international and foreign currency
  • Payment authorization using a UK-based immigration advisor to prepare your entire UK visa application who will accept a bank transfer from you and then make the online UK visa fee payment on your behalf

Here’s more information on the fees you’ll be required to pay.

* When can you apply

  • For visit visas, you must apply 3 months before to your proposed travel date.
  • For most work visas, you must apply 3 months prior to the start date of your employment.
  • Student and Child Student visas must be applied for 6 months prior to the commencement of your study.
  • Standard Visitor visa decisions are now taking an average of 6 weeks.

Settlement applications might take up to 6 months to process and must be granted before you travel to the United Kingdom. If you are granted permission to settle in the United Kingdom, you must travel before the period of authorization expires.

* Visa Fee

There is a fee for each visa. The price is determined by the type of visa you apply for, the duration, whether you are the lead applicant or dependent and other factor. all fees are paid online

Here’s a brief overview of the current United Kingdom visa fee for the most common visa types:

Fees for UK visitor”s visas:

  • £95 for a 6 months visitor visa.
  • £261 for a 2years UK visitor visa
  • £655 for a 5years UK visitor visa.
  • £822 for a10years UK visitor visa.

UK Fees for work visas:

  • UK Fees for skilled worker visas range from £610 to £1,408.
  • UK Fees for a Health and Care visa are £232.

UK Fees for Visa Settlement:

  • United Kingdom Fees for settlement visas: £1,523
  • Fees for other dependant relatives in the UK: £3,250
  • UK Fees for a refugee dependant relative’s settlement visa are £388.

UK Fees for study visas:

* Fast Forward Your Visa Application Decision

You may be able to use the ‘priority service‘ or even the’super-priority service‘ when filing your application, depending on the type of visa you are seeking for.

The Priority Visa service reduces the processing time for UK visitor visas to 5 working days, as well as numerous residency-type visas from many months to three weeks.

The Super Priority Visa service is only available for a few types of UK visas and provides a decision the next working day.

The fees for a Priority Visa and a Super Priority Visa are not cheap, and the service standard is only guaranteed if your visa application is free of errors:

Fees for UK Priority Visas:

  • £212 for a visitor visa
  • UK £573 for a settlement visa
  • UK Fees for a Super Priority Visa are £956.

* Pay for Medical care(healthcare surcharge)

You’ll need to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application, if you are:

  • Applying for a visa to work, study, or join your family member.
  • Applicants who wish to stay in the UK for more than 6 months
  • Not applying to stay permanently in the country.

The exact amount you pay is determined by the length of your visa. A visa may be granted for a period of time longer than your course of study or job.

  • For a student or Youth Mobility Scheme visa(£470 per year), for example £940 for a 2-year visa
  • For visa and immigration applicants who are under the age of 18 at time of application(£470 per year)
  • For all other visa and immigration applications(£624 per year), for example £3,120 for a 5-year visa

* Mandatory user pay

In Nigeria, there are three visa application centers: one in Abuja and two in Lagos (Victoria Island and Ikeja).

The visa application centers in Abuja and Victoria Island are free to use, while the Ikeja visa application center, which is the largest, charges a fee.

This’mandatory user-pays’ visa application centre charge is presently fixed at £55 per person and is paid on the UKVI website throughout the online application process together with all other payments.

* Proving that you didn’t have tuberculosis (TB)

If you want to stay in the UK for longer than six months, you may be required to take a tuberculosis test as part of your visa application. If you do, you’ll need to provide a certificate proving you’re free of tuberculosis with your visa application.

3. Supporting Documents for UK Visa Application.

The requirement for a UK visa is determined by the individual’s country of citizenship. This means that there are a variety of documents that must be collected. These include:

* Proof of financial support/statement of account/ proof of funds

  • Employee (salary account at least 6months statement)
  • Business owner ( company bank account statement stating all the transactions)

*Employee that want to apply for UK visa must submit

  • NOC from employer with salary
  • Duration and Leave information
  • Company license incase employer with tax return
  • Travel itinerary

* Student Visa Document

  • Bank statement ( at 6months either personal savings or from a sponsor)
  • Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies from your course provider (CAS )
  • you will submit a valid ATAS certificate if your course and nationality require it
  • If you’re under the age of 18, proof of parental or other legal guardian consent; proof of your relationship to your parent or guardian; and your tuberculosis test results if you’re under the age of 18.
  • If you’ve received financial support for your course fees and living expenses in the last 12 months, you’ll need written permission from your financial sponsor to submit your application.

* Medical records

* Two recent passport-sized photographs

* Copies of your international passport (valid passport)

* Property documents

4. Complete and Submit the Online Application Form

Applications for a UK Visa are submitted through the Immigration website. It is important to note that the visa application process includes a number of stages. Each stage has its own specific requirements, which must be observed in order to successfully submit your application.

You should only start filling your UK online visa application form after you have gathered and properly prepared all of your supporting documents and verified that your passport is valid for travel; otherwise, you may waste a lot of time having to re-do the online application.

The UK online visa application form is not a form in the conventional sense, but rather a series of questions that you’ll be asked to complete.

It’s important to know which type of UK visa you require because the information requested during the online application process varies depending on which type of UK visa you’ve applied for.

Furthermore, if you apply for the wrong type of UK visa, you significantly increase your chances of being denied.
Even if you have all of your supporting documents and passport ready, it usually takes an hour or more to complete the UK visa application form.

When you begin the form, you will be asked to create an account; enter an email address that you have access to because you will need to verify your account before you can proceed.
At the bottom of the form, you’ll have one last chance to review and edit any information you’ve entered.

DO NOT CLICK THE CONFIRM BUTTON UNTIL YOU ARE SURE THAT EVERYTHING IS CORRECT, AS YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO CHANGE ANYTHING AFTER THIS POINT. Your online UK visa application form is sent immediately to UKVI once you confirm, and the only method to make changes is to start a new visa application form.

5. Schedule the UK Visa Appointment.

The visa application process can be daunting, especially if you’ve never tried to get a visa before. It’s important to schedule an appointment as soon as possible so that your application will be reviewed in a timely manner.

How to Book an Appointment

After submitting your online UK visa application and paying the relevant costs, you must schedule an appointment at one of the three UK visa application centers in Nigeria to enroll your biometric data.

Until you do this, your application for a UK visa is incomplete.

TLScontact, a UKVI commercial partner, runs the UK visa application centres in Nigeria, which are located in Abuja and Lagos (one in Victoria Island, the other in Ikeja).

Ikeja is Nigeria’s largest UK visa application centre, but it is also a mandatory user-pays site, meaning there is a price to use it.
The use of Abuja and Victoria Island is free.
After you’ve submitted your UK visa application form, go to the TLScontact website and click the link on the UKVI website to schedule an appointment.

Create an account and schedule an appointment at your preferred UK visa application center.

TLScontact also provides a number of other value-added services to help you get the most out of your visa application, which you can select as you go through the appointment scheduling procedure. You’ll need to make another online payment for any additional services before you can confirm your appointment.

When you’ve finished, an email confirmation (together with a receipt for any additional value services purchased) will be sent to the email address you used to create the account.

Save this email confirmation and print a copy to bring with you to the visa application center.

6. Attending Biometric and Fingerprint

This are the list of document you go with to the application center, these include:

  • Application Form
  • Visa Fee Receipt
  • Valid Passport
  • Checklist Printout
  • Supporting Documents
  • Appointment Confirmation

7. Visa Decision Waiting Time

After attending your biometric appointment and having your biometrics taken, the Home Office caseworker will make a decision on your application in one working day (with the UKVI’s Super Priority Service) or eight weeks (with the Standard Service). You will receive a confirmation by email that your visa is approved