The British government has officially implemented an increase in visa fees, effective from today. Travelers heading to the United Kingdom will now encounter higher costs for various types of visas, including visit visas and student visas. The UK Home Office has revealed that these changes will result in a visit visa for less than six months costing GBP 115 (approximately ₹11,500), marking an increase of GBP 15 (around ₹1,500). Meanwhile, the fee for applying for a student visa from outside the UK will rise to GBP 490, roughly equivalent to ₹50,000, an increase of GBP 127 (approximately ₹12,750).
This visa fee adjustment encompasses a wide range of categories, such as fees for visit visas of varying durations (up to 6 months, 2, 5, and 10-year visit visas), most entry clearance fees, applications for leave to remain in the UK for work and study purposes, fees for indefinite leave to enter and remain, health and care visas, fees related to certificates of sponsorship and confirmation of acceptance for studies, and applications for British citizenship through registration and naturalization.
A spokesperson from the Home Office justified the increase, stating, “It is right and fair to increase visa application fees so we can fund vital public services and allow wider funding to contribute to public sector pay.”
The revised fee structure for UK visas, applicable to foreign nationals, including Indians, will come into effect on October 4. Notably, the fee adjustments differ depending on the type of visa. Family, settlement, and citizenship visa fees will see a 20% increase, while work and visit visa fees will rise by 15%. The immigration health surcharge (IHS) will also increase to GBP 1,035 annually.
For students, including child students and dependents, the visa fee will now be GBP 490. However, there will be no increase in visa fees for short-term courses where students study English for more than 6 months but less than 11 months.
Skilled workers will also face varying visa costs. If a certificate of sponsorship has been issued for three years or less, the visa fee will be GBP 719 (approximately ₹65,000). For certificates issued for more than three years, the immigration fee will be GBP 1,420, roughly ₹129,000.
Furthermore, skilled workers in shortage occupations with certificates of sponsorship valid for three years or less will now pay GBP 551, or nearly ₹50,351. If the sponsorship certificate has been valid for more than three years, the immigration fee will amount to GBP 1,084, approximately ₹99,125.
It’s important to note that individuals seeking visas, permission to stay, or citizenship in the UK will be subject to these adjusted fees.