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UK Visa for Indians - A Complete Guide

Team AckoNov 27, 2023

Planning to visit the United Kingdom from India? You are on the right screen. No matter why you are going to the UK—to visit, work, study, or for some other reason—you have to apply for a UK visa from India. There are different categories of visas you can apply for, and based on that, their corresponding fees, documents, duration and processing time will be determined.

In light of this, we wrote this article to help you with the UK visa application process and to make sure you know everything you need to know.

UK Visa for Indians



Do Indians need a UK visa?

Yes! Every Indian citizen visiting the United Kingdom must apply for a UK visa. It is important to remember that a visa applicant should be older than 18 years old. If one is younger than 18, they can request a minor visa. 

What are the different types of UK visas for Indians?

There are different reasons why you may want to apply for a UK visa, and for this reason, the United Kingdom has organised different visa types based on the purpose of your visit under multiple visa types. Here are the six major UK visa types you can choose from.

Work and Business: 

If you want to work, do business, or invest in the UK. Includes Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 5 visas. For more information on the various work visas, click here.

Study Visa: 

If you want to enrol yourself in educational courses in the UK. For more information on study visas, click here.

Tourist Visa: 

If you want to have short-term visits, travel and visit friends or family in the UK. For detailed information on Visiting Visas, click here.

Family Visa: 

If you want to join your family members who are settled in the UK. Includes spouse, parent, and children. For more information on Family Visas, click here.

Settlement Visa: 

If you are looking to permanently settle in the UK.

Transit Visa: 

If you are passing through the UK to another destination. For more detailed information, click here.

Validity of Different Types of UK Visa for Indians

The table below shows the validity of different types of UK visa for Indians:

UK Visa Types

Validity Period

Work and Business Visa

6 months to 5 years.

Study Visa

Depends on the duration of your course.

Tourist Visa

6 months, with the option to extend. 

Family Visa

6 months or less.

Settlement Visa

2 to 6 years, with the option to extend. 

Transit Visa

24 hours to 48 hours.

UK Visa Processing Time in India 

Here is a table showing the UK visa processing time in India. 

UK Visa Types


Work and Business Visa

Within 3 weeks

Study Visa

Within 3 weeks

Tourist Visa

Within 3 weeks

Family Visa

Within 24 weeks

Settlement Visa

Processing times can range from a few months to several months, depending on the circumstances and application type.

Transit Visa

Within 3 weeks

UK Visa Fees from India

The table below shows different types of UK visa fees for Indians:

UK Visa Types


Work and Business Visa

Starts from 13500 onwards

Study Visa

Starts from 21213 onwards

Tourist Visa

Starts from 13500 onwards

Family Visa

Starts from 12197 onwards

Settlement Visa

Starts from 21213 onwards

Transit Visa

Starts from 9045 onwards

Note: Please note that the prices in the table may change based on the length of your stay. For the most up-to-date information, please check with the UK embassies.

Documents required for UK visa

Here is a list of the required documents based on the type of application for the UK visa for Indians you want to submit. 

Documents Needed for a UK Standard Visitor Visa

  • Currently valid passport

  • Previously issued passports (if available)

  • Financial documents (such as your bank statement, employment letter, etc.)

  • Financial documents of the sponsor (if applicable)

  • Applicant’s academic or employment details (as applicable)

  • Documents related to the registered business (for a self-employed applicant)

  • A letter and documents from a business owner in the UK supporting the need for a business trip

  • Proof of residential address in India (for a non-Indian applicant living in India)

Documents Needed for a UK Transit Visa

  • Currently valid passport 

  • Confirmed travel booking

  • Document evidence of the final destination country

  • Visa/Green Card/Residence Permit for the final destination country

Documents Needed for a UK Study Visa

  • Currently valid passport

  • Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)

  • Documents supporting the applicant’s history of education

  • Document evidence of accommodation in the United Kingdom

  • Document evidence of financial stability

  • English language proficiency certificate

  • Report of the tuberculosis test

  • Document evidence of the sponsor’s financial status and occupation (if applicable)

  • Legal guardian’s or parent's consent letter (for a minor applicant)

Documents Needed for a UK Work Visa

  • Currently valid passport

  • Previously issued passports (if available)

  • Applicant’s sponsorship certificate credential 

  • Report of the applicant’s tuberculosis test

  • English language proficiency certificate

  • Financial stability proof

  • Criminal conviction report (if applicable)

Documents Needed for a UK Family Visa

  • Currently valid passport

  • Previously issued passports (if available)

  • Details of any immigration application submitted previously 

  • Financial stability proof

  • English language proficiency proof

  • Evidence of having an accommodation in the United Kingdom

UK Visa For Indians - Photo Requirements

As per the visa issuing authorities, you need to submit photographs that fulfil the following requirements.

  • You need to provide two identical photos that have been recently taken

  • The dimensions of each photograph must be 35mm x 45mm

  • The size of your image from head to chin must be 29mm

  • The background in the photograph must be clear light grey or basic cream

  • The person in the photograph must be directly looking at the camera lens

  • The person in the photograph should wear glasses only when necessary due to a medical condition

  • The facial expression of the person must be neutral

  • A headgear is not allowed unless required for religious purposes

  • The photo must be free from the red-eye effect

How to Apply for a UK Visa from India?

To apply for a UK Visa from India, you must follow the below steps:

  • Choose the correct type of Visa: Your purpose of travel to the UK determines the kind of Visa you need.

  • Complete the UK visa application online: The form will ask for details such as your name, nationality, country of residence, marital status, passport number, why you wish to enter the country and other information relevant to the application process. You should enter all the information carefully; any mismatches can lead to your application being rejected.

  • Collect the required documents for the Visa you are applying for: You will be asked to produce documents such as photographs, your passport, proof of accommodation, travel itinerary, UK visa invitation letter and so on.

  • Schedule an appointment for the UK Visa: Make an appointment online and print the details confirming the same. You will need this to enter the UK Visa Application Centre and the list of the required documents.

  • Attend the UK Visa Interview: At the UK visa application centre, you will be asked to provide your biometric information, you will be asked for your photographs, and your fingerprints will be scanned. Every visa applicant must attend the visa application centre, including children. Minors have to be accompanied by an adult. 

Why Does a Visa Application Get Denied?

You must pay careful attention to every detail to ensure you do not make mistakes. Some of the most common reasons for applications being denied are:

  • Applying for the wrong type of Visa

  • Missing documents

  • Fraudulent documents

  • Failure to provide sufficient proof that you have the financial means to support your stay in the UK.

  • Criminal History

Can I Appeal Against Visa Denial? 

If your application gets denied, you will be notified why it was rejected. You should usually be able to tell from the letter of decision whether you can ask for an administrative review or not. If it says yes, you have 28 days to file an appeal after the decision. Follow these steps to appeal a denial:

Step 1: Fill in Form IAFT-2

Step 2: Submit it to the UK Immigration and Asylum Chambers.

Step 3: Add relevant documents in support of your application

Step 3: They will forward the documents to the relevant authorities.

Step 4: Once a decision has been made, you will be notified.

What Should a UK Visa Holder Know?

Even after successfully obtaining a United Kingdom visa, you may have to comply with the checking and examination process at Immigration Control at UK borders. Such checks are done to detect any violations associated with your visa conditions. To be a responsible UK visa holder, you must remember the following.

  • Your visa will notify the authorities about who can enter and live permanently or temporarily in the UK.

  • Your visa will notify the authorities who cannot enter the UK borders 

  • Your visa will notify the authorities who need to exit the UK borders in case of expired validity. 

  • There may be restrictions on working in the UK, studying, etc. You need to check all the restrictions based on your visa category while applying for the same.

Countries You Can Travel with a United Kingdom Visa

There are about 36 countries and several territories you can visit as an Indian holding a UK visa. Some of the major destinations include the following. 

  • United Arab Emirates

  • Egypt

  • Morocco

  • Philippines

  • Singapore

  • Mexico

  • Costa Rica

  • Panama

  • British Territory of Anguilla

  • Bahamas

  • British Territory of Bermuda

  • British Territory of Cayman Islands

  • Curacao

  • Dominican Republic

  • Peru

  • Albania

  • Armenia

  • Georgia

  • Ireland

  • Montenegro

  • Serbia

  • Turkey

  • Jordan

  • Oman

  • Qatar

  • Saudi Arabia

UK Visa and Travel Insurance

Having a Travel Insurance plan is a mandatory requirement for a UK visa applicant. Moreover, it is always better to cover your finances with an insurance plan while travelling abroad. Keeping that in mind, ACKO offers comprehensive Travel Insurance for Indians travelling to the UK. 

Important Points to Note

  • India is not on the visa-exempt list with regard to travelling to the UK. Every Indian citizen must apply for a relevant visa to enter the UK. 

  • Applicants under the age of 18 must apply for a Minor Visa.

  • You have to purchase travel insurance when travelling to the UK. It is mandatory.

  • Indians must apply for the relevant UK visa within three months of their intended departure from India. This applies to all visa types.

  • In the case of Student and Child Student Visas, the earliest you can apply is six months before the date the course starts.

Frequently Asked Questions

Common FAQs About UK Visa


How many months prior to the trip should I apply for a UK visa?

Three months before you plan to travel, you can fill out an application form for a UK visa.

Do I need a booked flight ticket to apply for a UK visa?

No, it is not compulsory. However, you have to submit a planned travel itinerary where you must include your desired dates for visiting and leaving the country.

What Are the Most Common Questions You Get Asked During the Visa Interview?

Most of the questions during the interview revolve around your purpose and duration of stay, your source of funds, and a few others. They could also ask you questions about the UK and other questions relevant to the type of visa you are applying for.

What Do I Have to Show to Prove My Source of Funds?

It is advisable to submit a single bank statement for the past six months. The statement should contain the bank's seal to prove its authenticity.

Do I have to undergo medical tests before I travel to the UK?

For a visit under six months, you don't require a medical test. Citizens from India travelling to the UK for over six months will need a Tuberculosis test. Generally, a complete health checkup is advisable before you travel to any country. Click here for more information on the subject.

Is my application fee refunded if my visa application gets rejected?

You do not get a refund if your application gets rejected. Take your time and follow every guideline to avoid getting your application rejected.

Does the UK offer a visa on arrival for Indians?

No, the United Kingdom does not offer a visa on arrival. You need to apply in advance.

Can I travel to Europe with a UK visa?

You can visit certain parts of Europe, such as Georgia, Ireland, Albania, etc.

Can I get a UK visa faster?

Yes, you can opt for the priority service by paying additional charges to receive your UK visa faster.

Do I need travel insurance to obtain a visa for the UK?

Yes, travel insurance is mandatory if you are applying for a UK visa.

What to Do If My UK Visa Application Gets Denied?

If your visa application gets rejected, you can apply for it again with a new application. Make sure you resolve the issue that led to the refusal of a UK visa in the first place.

Explore More:

Disclaimer: The information mentioned on this page is compiled from different websites and government sources. The information may be updated from time to time. Hence, please refer to the respective government websites and verify before making any visa-related decisions.


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