You will be needing a United Kingdom – UK Visa If you are planning to travel to the United Kingdom for education, tourism, business, or to live and work, and you do not know how to get your visa, do not worry any longer. We at TravelReap have got you covered fully.
The United Kingdom consists of England, Scotland, Whales and Northern Ireland, is on the continent of Europe. British English is the official lingua franca.
UK visa eligibility entails certain requirements that we will be covering in this post. Also worthy of note is the fact that you have to be absolutely sure of the visa type that you are applying for because you’ll be granted entry into the Country for the duration of your visa application.
We have put together this detailed guide to the UK visa application that will make your visa application a lot easier.
Do you want to travel to the UK for work, visit, vacation or business? Then you need a UK visa as well as a valid International passport before you can be granted entry into the Country.
READ MORE : UK Visa Lottery
UK Visa Types
Below are the different types of UK Visas you can apply for:
UK Visa Types
UK Visa Processing Time
|Business Visa||15 – 90 days||6 months or less|
|Work Visa||15 – 90 days||For the length of your work program|
|Student Visa||15 – 90 days||For the length of your school nprogram|
|Family Visa||15 – 90 days||3 – 6 months|
|Visit Visa||15 – 90 days||6 months|
UK Business Visa
This visa is for people who are traveling to attend to business. Also known as a Tier 1 visa, this visa takes between 15 and 90 days to process. Business visas are usually valid for a period of 6 months or less. It is divided into five categories as follows:
- General- This is no longer available to new applicants.
- Investor – This visa is given to persons who intend to invest in the U.k.
- Entrepreneur- This visa is given to business persons who intend to set up a business in the UK.
- Graduate Entrepreneur- This visa is granted to graduates who have operational ideas that are viable.
- Exceptional Talent- This visa is granted to persons who have an endorsement from an academic sector.
UK Work Visa
This type of visa is given to people who have work to do in the United Kingdom. UK Work Visas can either be Tier 2 or Tier 5. Tier 2 visas are issued to persons offered a skilled job in the U.K. Tier 5 visas are given to individuals working in a Government Authorized Exchange program, Youth Mobility Scheme, Creative or Sporting programs, Charities, and Religious programs.
This visa is valid for the length of the work program. Work Visas take between 15 to 90 days to process. Apart from the general required documents, you would also need a letter from your employer outlining the reason for your visit, who you will be meeting and details of any payment/expenses.
UK Student Visa
This is visa is otherwise known as a Tier 4 Visa. Student visas are issued to applicants who are going to the UK to study. Apart from the general visa requirements, student visa applicants have to come with proof of admission to a U.K University and also possess the resources required to live and study in the UK. This visa takes between 15 to 90 days to process and is valid for the period of your school program.
UK Family Visa
The visa is granted to persons who intend to visit their relations in the UK for a while. It is often granted for a duration of 3 – 6 months. It usually takes 15 to 90 days to process this visa. Individuals applying for permanent residency to stay with family members would have to see through the process when they arrive in the UK.
UK Visitor Visa
Often granted to persons who need visas that would enable them to stay in the UK for not more than 6 months. Apart from the general required documents, visitors would also need a letter of Invitation. If you are going to the UK for tourism then you would need to submit your travel itinerary. On the other hand, if you are visiting the UK to receive medical treatment then you need a letter from a doctor or consultant in the UK showing:
– Details of health condition
– Cost and duration of treatment
– Location of treatment
Processing takes 15 to 90 days. UK visitors visa can be granted to the applicants seeking to be the following:
- General visitors
- Academic visitors
- Entertainment visitors
- Special visitors (Visitors for private medical treatment).
- And a host of others.
UK Visa Requirements in Nigeria
Below are the necessary requirements you need to meet that pre-qualify you for a UK Visa in Nigeria:
- A valid international passport with a page that is blank on both sides
- Completed visa application form (this is filled in online)
- One passport photograph that meets the requirements
- Visa fee
- Proof of finances (e.g. original bank statement that is not older than 3 months)
- Confirmation of accommodation and flight bookings
- A letter of invitation if you are being sponsored by a friend or family member
- Original marriage certificate if you are travelling with your spouse
- Birth certificates for your children if you are travelling together
- Recent utility bills
- If you are travelling for business you will need to include: a letter of invitation/confirmation of training/confirmation of conference; and full details for an authorised representative from your company and their contact details.
Note: A consistent income of about ₦200,000 and above is considered a safe amount. Anything less and the embassy may find it hard to trust that you will return to Nigeria.
You can also include supporting documents to strengthen your application.
How to Apply for UK Visa in Nigeria
We willbe outlining how to apply for UK visa below:
UK Visa Application Form Online
Step 1: Register a user account on the GOV.UK website. You will also be able to double check what type of visa you will need for your trip on the website.
Step 2: Fill out the application form, pay the visa fee, and book an appointment at a Visa Application Centre (see below). You will receive an email confirming your appointment and what documents you will need to take along. You will also be given a GWF number which you will need for the next step.
Step 3: 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.
Step 4: Attend your appointment and submit your biometrics at a UK Visa Application Centre. To avoid any delays in the application process you should bring along the following:
- Your original passport
- Printed copies of your online application form and appointment confirmation
- Receipt of payment of visa fees
- All the required documents as stated above
- Supporting documents
Important: Your visa fee will no longer be refundable after you have submitted your biometrics. You must also ensure you are not late for your appointment. If you are late, your application process may be delayed as you will have to rebook your appointment.
Step 5: Wait for your visa application to be processed. You will be able to track your visa application on the TLScontact website.
Step 6: Collect your passport at the specified Visa Application Centre. You will be notified when it is ready for collection.
According to TLScontact, “Children under 5 years old are now required to attend the Visa Application Centre in order for them to have their photo taken at the centre. Please note that minors are not allowed to submit applications by themselves, they must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.”
UK Visa Application Login
You can get your UK visa application here : TLScontact website.
UK Visa Fees in Nigeria
The cost of a Standard Visitor Visa is currently about ₦45,000 ($125). The UK visa fees are different for each visa category. These can be found on the GOV.UK website.
UK Visa Application Submission
UK visa applications can be submitted at one of the Visa Application Centres in Lagos or Abuja from Monday to Friday, between 8:30 and 16:30, except on public holidays.
The earliest you can apply for a UK visa is 3 months before your intended departure date.
UK Visa Application Processing
Visa application processing can take four to six working days. However, some visa applications can take up to 30 days if documents are missing or they require special attention because of crime or a history of rejection.
Which UK Visa do I Need?
The most common UK visa is the Standard Visitor Visa (Tourist Visa). The Visitor Visa is issued for a short stay of up to 6 months. This visa will allow you to visit friends and loved ones, go on a holiday or vacation, study, conduct business, attend conferences and training programmes, or transit through the country (if you will be staying for more than 48 hours).
The Standard Visitor Visa has replaced the Family Visitor / General Visitor / Child Visitor / Business Visitor / Sports Visitor / Entertainer Visitor / Prospective Entrepreneur visa.
Find detailed information about the Standard Visitor Visa.
UK Visa Collection
You will be able to collect your passport and visa between 10:00 and 16:00 from Monday to Friday (except public holidays). You will be alerted through an SMS when your application has been sent to the UK Embassy on the submission day, and you will be alerted when your passport arrives back at the UK Application Centre and is ready for collection.
You will need to bring copies of your application documents, an original photographic ID, and a copy of the biodata page in your passport.
Note: Someone else cannot collect your documents on your behalf, except if you are a government representative, a parent collecting for your child or children, or you are collecting on behalf of your family if you applied together.
UK Visa Application Rejection
The most common reasons for UK visas being rejected are:
- Submitting false documents
- The applicant has received a deportation order
- The applicant was found guilty of a crime that warrants four years or more of jail time
- Withholding documentation of a criminal background
- Insufficient funds
- Overstaying a previous visit to the United Kingdom
- Submitting fraudulent documents on a previous trip to the United Kingdom
- Not complying with all the application requirements
- Lack of a valid passport or travel documents
- Invalid reason for wanting to visit the United Kingdom
Using a visa service is recommended if you are unsure about the process and requirements. It will cost extra but will give you peace of mind that everything is in order.
You will not be refunded if you miss your appointment or your visa application is rejected.
UK Visa Application Centre Addresses
UK Visa Application Centre in Victoria Island, Lagos
First Floor, Churchgate Building, Tower 2,
Churchgate Street, Victoria Island, Lagos
Website: TLScontact Victoria Island, Lagos
UK Visa Application Centre in Ikeja, Lagos
Ground & First Floors, Etiebets Place,
21 Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way
Website: TLScontact Lagos
UK Visa Application Centre, Abuja.
Third floor, El-Yakub Building (beside Metro Plaza), Plot 1129
Zakariya Maimalari Street, Central Business District
Website: TLScontact Abuja
British Deputy High Commission, Lagos
11 Walter Carrington Crescent
British High Commission, Abuja
Plot 1137, Diplomatic Drive, Central Business District
UK Visa Application Important Notice
Before you can begin the application process you will need to familiarize yourself with the different types of visas so you choose the right one and ensure you have an international passport that is valid for at least 1 month after your intended stay in the United Kingdom.
You can easily apply for your passport online or at the nearest immigration office in any state in Nigeria.
Note: the ECOWAS passport is not a valid travel document if you are applying for a UK visa.
Please check your eligibility before beginning the application process and submitting your application well in advance of flight departure. Once you have your visa, all that’s left to do is pack your bags!