UK VISA REQUIREMENTS FOR NIGERIAN CITIZENS
The United Kingdom is one of the most famous sovereign states in Europe that comprises Scotland, England, whales, and Northern Ireland. The country’s inhabitants speak English as their official language and the kingdom boasts of thousands of tourist attraction centers that have visitors trooping in annually.
When Nigerian plans to travel to the UK for tourism, business, vacation, or education and they always have to apply for a valid visa first. This article discusses the requirements for UK visa applications for Nigeria passport holders.
There are different kinds of UK visa that allows individuals to be granted entry into the country for certain durations. Visa requirements could differ according to visa types and required visa types depend on the reasons for visiting the country.
TYPES OF UK VISA
WORK VISA: This is issued to people who work in the UK. The UK work visa can either be tier 2 or tier 5. Tier 2 visas are for people offered skilled jobs in the UK while tier 5 is for individuals working in government authorized exchange, youth mobility scheme, sporting programs, and religious programs. The visa is valid for the length of work programs.
TOURIST AND VISITOR’S VISAS: Since the UK is a well-known tourism destination for shorter and even sometimes longer visits from foreigners, the visitor visas are often granted to people that intend staying less than six months in the UK. Categories of tourist and visiting visas include:
Marriage visitor visa– This is a short-term visa that lets you and your fiancé/fiancée travel to the UK to get married.
Parent of a tier 4 child student visa– This is for parents intending to accompany their child who is under 12 years old to an independent school in the UK.
UK Visitor visa– This is also known as a standard visitor visa. It allows the holder to stay up to six months in the UK. This visa is ideal for tourists, those seeking for medical treatments, and those on professional visits. The standard visa has replaced a family visitor visa, general visitor visa, child visitor visa, business visitor visa, entertainer visitor visa, private medical treatment visitor visa, and prospective entrepreneur visa.
Apart from the general UK visa requirements, visitors will need a letter of invitation from the host, for tourists and businessmen, the travel itinerary will be needed.
For patients travelling to the United Kingdom for treatment, a letter from a doctor or consultant in the UK showing details of health condition, location of treatment, cost, and duration of treatment will be needed. Processing takes 15-90 days.
STUDENT VISAS: These types of visas are issued to foreign students who gained admission to study in educational institutions in the UK. There are three categories in the student visa, they are:
Tier 4 (Child) student visas– This is for foreigners aged 4-17 coming to the UK to study at an independent school in the country.
Tier 4 (general) student visas– This for foreigners over the age of 16 who intend to enroll for studies in the UK. With this visa you can enjoy benefits such as bringing family members to the UK, getting a voluntary job.
Short term study visa– For international students who wish to participate in a temporary program lasting from 6-11 months
Asides the general UK visa requirements, students are required to provide proof of admission into a UK university and proof of funds needed to live and study in the UK. It takes 15-90 days to process the students’ visas.
FAMILY VISAS: This is the kind of visas issued to visit family members of people residing or working in the UK. This visa allows the holder to stay more than six months in the UK as dependents on their family members. The categories are:
UK spouse visa– this for people who want to join their spouse or fiancé in the UK. The spouse residing in the UK must be a British citizen before the application is recognized.
UK parent visa– this for parents who want to join their children in the UK. The child must be a citizen/resident of the United Kingdom.
UK child visa-this is for British citizens who have children staying outside the UK. With the UK child visa, the children can join their parents.
GENERAL REQUIREMENTS FOR UK VISA APPLICATION
It is important to note that only two UK visa application options are available for Nigerian applicants. The first option is through Teleperformance( a credible private UK visa registration company) while the second option is through the government website-visa4uk. The general documents are:
- A UK visa application form obtained online.
- An international passport was valid for at least 30 days after visa expiration. The passport must have at least two unused pages.
- Proof of UK visa application fee payment (original receipt)
- Coloured passport with white background
- Proof of accommodation: a document showing where you will be accommodated will be required. This could be in the form of a hotel reservation.
- Detailed travel itinerary
- Financial documents like bank statements, proof of earnings, or financial document of guardian in the UK that has sufficient resources to financially support you. These documents are to show that you can sustain yourself financially in the UK.
The documents listed above cuts across all UK visa types but certain additional documents could be required for some specific visas. For instance, the work visa will require a letter from your employer outlining reasons for your visit, who you will be meeting, and details of any payment/expenses.
Remember all documents should be submitted in the original form.
STEPS TO TAKE AFTER FILLING APPLICATION FORM
After filling of forms and payment, next is to schedule an appointment with the embassy. On the day of the appointment, the applicant has to carry all documents for submission and biometrics. Then await email notification from the embassy on visa status.
Processing time varies depending on visa type but it takes about 15-90 days for visa processing
The only reasons you could be denied a UK visa are:
- Insufficient funds for sustenance
- Criminal record with either your country or the UK
- Falsified documents submitted
- False reasons for travelling
- Refusal to comply with application requirements.
- Not meeting the English language requirement as English language knowledge might sometimes be tested.