I know everyone is interested to visit London but do you have your visa? To help you with your visa application, here are the detailed steps to follow:
1. Know the type of visa you want to apply.
There are different types of UK Visa: standard visitor visa, student visitor visa, employment visa, etc. You SHOULD apply the correct visa type because you can get denied when you apply the incorrect one. Generally, people who want to travel abroad for tourism should get the standard visitor visa. These steps are specifically for standard visitor visa. You can apply for this visa if the purpose of your visit are as follows:
- leisure, for example on holiday or vacation
- business, or to take part in sports or creative events
- private medical treatment
If you want to ensure what type of visa you should apply, visit this site. https://www.gov.uk/check-uk-visa
2. Register online.
Create an account on Visa4UK to apply for the first time and sign in if you already have an account. Click here to register.
3. Fill in the online application form.
Once you have created your account, then fill in the online application form HONESTLY.
4. Pay the visa fee.
Pay the visa fee of GBP 89 or $112 online. You must pay it through a credit card upon submission of the application form online.
5. Print out the form and book an appointment.
Print out the application form along with your payment receipt that will be provided through an email. After which, book an appointment to submit your application either in Manila or Cebu. Unfortunately, physical appearance is required. Hence, you really have to go to the visa application centers to submit your application and have your photo and biometrics taken. Yup, no interview required. We all applied in Manila so if you are from Mindanao, ensure that you consider domestic airfare to and from Manila/Cebu in scheduling the appointment. I picked the schedule with the cheapest fare. 🙂
VFS Global Services Philippines Private Inc., Mezzanine Floor Unit M01, Ecoplaza Building, 2305 Chino Roces Avenue Extension Makati City, Metro Manila 1231
VFS Global Services Philippines Private Inc., 9th Floor, Keppel Center, Unit 905, Samar Loop cor. Cardinal Rosales Avenue, Cebu Business Park, Cebu City 6000
6. Prepare the documents needed.
While waiting for your scheduled appointment, prepare necessary documents. Here is a complete list of documents that you can provide. Click here.
Basically all you need to submit are (1) current and old passports with blank pages and; (2) evidence that you can support yourself during the trip (ie. bank statements, pay slips, bank certificates, certificate of employment).
By the way, ensure to have a photocopy of each of the documents. One original and one photocopy just in case of unforeseen events.
7. Prepare other information for support.
Like all other visa applications, UK embassy just wants to ensure (1) you will be going back to the Philippines by the end of your trip and (2) you are capable of supporting your trip. Hence, to prove this, you can provide the following:
- Airline tickets (reservation tickets are allowed)
- Hotel reservation
- Budget and itinerary
- Income tax return or pay slips
- Certificate of employment
I suggest for you not to book your airline tickets unless your visa is approved. This might be quite expensive knowing that you can only apply for a visa 3 months before the scheduled trip, which means you can barely book promo fare but don’t worry as there are still promo even 3 months before your scheduled trip. My friend got his ticket for Php 45,000. For visa application purposes, my friends booked an airline reservation ticket through a travel agency. Again, it’s all up to you. If you are confident that your visa will be approved, (that’s the positive spirit!) then you can book your ticket before applying the visa.
For hotel reservation, ensure to book a cancellable or pay upon arrival hotels. Budget and itinerary, ensure to be specific on your travel schedule especially on indicating the price. Also make sure that your bank statement can support whatever your itinerary is. For instance, if your budget per itinerary is Php 50,000 make sure you have at least Php 200,000. This is a bit exaggerated yes but take note you have to pay for your airline tickets. So ensure that you have twice or even thrice of your budget.
8. Attend your appointment and submit your requirements.
Be at the application center 15 minutes before your appointment. I went there an hour before my scheduled appointment to ensure that there will be no delays like traffic. Go to the guard and present your appointment form. A queue number will be given to you so wait for your turn.
There are additional service provided by VFS but for a fee of course. SMS status update service cost Php 157.50. It is just a service wherein they will notify you through text the stage of your application: (1) if it is submitted in the immigration and (2) if it is already processed and ready for delivery. I don’t recommend this one as it is too costly and you will not know if the visa is approved or not. The other service, however, which I can recommend is their courier service which cost Php 525. This is best when you are from places away from application center so that you will no longer go back to the application center to get your passport and visa.
That’s the 8 detailed steps to apply for UK visa. Wait for at most 3 weeks to get your visa! Good luck and think positive! You can get it! Claim it dear! To further help you with your application, here are the frequently asked questions.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
When is the best time to apply for UK visa?
You can apply 3 months before your scheduled travel. Say if you plan to visit UK on 01 January then you can apply 01 April. This is the earliest date you can apply. You can’t apply earlier than 01 January.
How long you can stay?
Usually, a granted visa can let you stay up to 6 months. Both of my friends got 6-month-multi-entry-visa.
How to ensure visa approval?
There are no assurance that you can get your visa even if you submit everything needed. However, you can provide supports that will show that:
- you are leaving UK at the end of your visit
- you can support yourself and dependents, if any for the duration of your trip
- you are able to pay for your return ticket and any other related costs
- you have proof of your itineraries in UK (Activities you plan to do)
What countries you can visit with your UK Visa?
Happy to have relatives abroad that I was able to visit all countries covered by my UK Visa. Countries you can visit with your UK Visa are: Northern Ireland (Belfast, yup home of Game of Thrones), Wales, England and Scotland.