Alan Platt (Director) gives expert video advice on: What is a 'visit visa'?; Who is eligible for a visit visa?; Do I need to apply for a visit visa? and more...
What is a 'visit visa'?
A visit visa is issued to an individual who intends to come to the U.K. Generally for touristic purposes, for up to a period of six months in duration.
Who is eligible for a visit visa?
Anyone can apply for a visit visa to come to the United Kingdom for touristic purposes. They would need to demonstrate that they intend to visit the UK for a specific period of time, which would have to be less than six months, and at the end of that period, they would leave the UK.
Do I need to apply for a visit visa?
You would need to apply for a visit visa if you were a visa national. That means, one of the specified nationalities that it is obligatory to have a visa to come to the United Kingdom. If you are a non-visa national, it is not necessary to apply for a visa at a British diplomatic mission abroad. You would merely satisfy the immigration officer at the port of arrival that your intentions were genuine and at the end of your visit, you would leave the United Kingdom following your stay.
How long is a visit visa valid for?
A visit visa enables you to stay in the United Kingdom for up to six months, but the duration of a visit visa could be valid for up to five years. That doesn't mean you can stay in the United Kingdom for five years. It means that you can visit the United Kingdom on multiple entries over the five year period, remaining on each occasion for no more than six months.
Can I use a visit visa more than once in my lifetime?
Yes, you can use a visit visa more than once. It depends obviously how long the visa is valid for, but in certain circumstances it could be valid for up to a five year period, and would allow you to visit the United Kingdom on multiple occasions remaining for up to six months for each occasion.