If you have applied for a course last month, then you probably will have heard from your preferred university by now… and if you have, we hope it was the news you were hoping for!Before you start packing your bags and jump on a UK-bound plane though, you need to get the correct visa sorted. Applying for a visa may seem like a daunting process but let us assure you that it is most definitely not, as long as you stick to the rules.
It’s important to understand that you MUST enter the country with the appropriate visa in order to study legally. Under no circumstances a student is ever allowed to enter the UK under a tourist visa and commence their studies. Now that we’ve cleared that up, here are some top tips and general things that you must know about applying for a Tier 4 visa:
ONE The best time to apply for your Tier 4 student visa is as soon as possible. You can begin your visa application process three months in advance but only after you have received your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) from your chosen university. If you are hoping to come to study in the UK in September 2016, you may have received your CAS by now and if that’s the case, we would suggest you get started with the application immediately.
TWO Where do you make your application? Known as a Visa Application Centre, this is where you need to go to submit your application. For the most up to date details on the nearest centre to you, visit https://www.vfsglobal.co.uk/global/
THREE If the nearest Visa Application Centre is located a long distance away from where you live, we suggest that you allow an extra day or two in the city as you may be required to provide additional documents even if you weren’t initially asked to. Translation: avoid scheduling tight return travels on the same day because the process may take longer than promised on the website so be prepared to wait. Book yourself into a hotel room, or better yet, see if you have friends or relatives that you can crash with for a night or two.
FOUR Whenever you feel that the process is too time-consuming, just remember that it will all be worth it when you step your foot in the UK as a student and begin the next chapter of your life. Also, click here to see all the fun things you get to experience as a student in the UK so you have some incentive beyond all this to look forward to!
This is only the first post of our “Visa Application” series to help guide you along the process. Follow our blog and social media platforms for more visa application tips to come.