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UK Study Visa Requirements, Fees & Application Process

Harsh Ranjan      June 23, 2023

The United Kingdom is home to a number of the most prestigious universities in the world. Yes! It is not surprising that students from India choose to study in the United Kingdom, which is home to prestigious universities and a thriving academic and professional community. Each year, tens of thousands of international students flood the country. To study in this country, however, you must possess a valid UK student visa. However, obtaining a student visa to study in the United Kingdom can be challenging and time-consuming. 600,000 international students are attracted to the United Kingdom by some of the world's finest universities. This indicates the level of competition for obtaining a student visa for the United Kingdom. The duration of your UK student visa is based on the length of the programme you have been offered, as detailed in your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS). 
 

However, how long does it take to process a UK student visa in India? In India, what is the process for obtaining a UK student visa?
 

Continue reading to learn everything there is to know about the application for a UK student visa, the cost of a UK student visa, and the duration of a UK student visa.
 

Recent Developments Concerning UK Student Visas for Indian Students:
 

India and the United Kingdom agreed to recognise each other's higher education degrees in an MoU signed on July 21, 2022.

UCAS reports that the application rate for 18-year-olds from disadvantaged communities in the United Kingdom has increased from 27% in 2021 to more than 29% in 2022. In addition, a record-breaking application rate of 44.1% has been noted. Over 683,650 students had submitted 3,049,000 applications through UCAS by 30 June 2022.
 

Times Higher Education reports that the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras and the University of Birmingham have joined to offer joint-degree programmes (THE). There will be accessible two-year master's degrees in Energy Systems, Data Science, and Biomedical Engineering.

During the academic year of 2022/23, almost 38,000 students will participate in the UK's "Turing Scheme" exchange programme. According to the QS Top Student Cities Rankings 2023, which was released on June 29th, London is the greatest city for students. Overall, London received a score of 100, with high grades in categories such as Student View, Student Mix, and Rankings, but a low score for pricing.


The government of the United Kingdom has awarded 75 fully-funded scholarships to Indian students who wish to study in the United Kingdom. To honor 75 years of Indian independence, the scholarships were announced.
 

Visa types for Indian students to study in the United Kingdom:


Depending on the duration of the course/program, the UK offers four types of study visas: Short-term study visas, Child student visa (Tier 4), Standard Visitor Visa, and General study visa (Tier 4).
 

Category of Study Visas                                                                                 Description
Student VisaThe validity of this visa, like the former Tier 4 visa, can range from 2 to 5 years for students over the age of 18.
Child Student VisaFor students ages 4 to 17 who have received an offer from a private school in the United Kingdom
Normal Visitor VisaThe standard visitor visa, which is issued to those who travel to the United Kingdom, can also be used for short study courses


When to Apply for a Student Visa to the UK?
 

  • The second most important question is when to submit an application for a UK student visa. Obtaining a student visa for the United Kingdom normally takes between 15 and 21 days, but it may take longer during peak periods, so apply early.
     
  • You may submit your visa application up to six months prior to the start of your studies. If you submit your application before the deadline, it will be denied.
     
  • You must submit your visa application at least two weeks prior to the beginning of your course (or if you have the option of starting your studies online, at least 2 weeks before you plan to travel to the UK.)
     
  • Before beginning a course or traveling, allow sufficient time for the visa to be processed.
     
  • The processing of your visa application could take several weeks. However, due to competition, the average processing time for UK student visas in India varies by country.
     

What is the cost of a UK student visa from India?
 

The current Tier 4 (General) student visa fee in the United Kingdom is £363 (about 440 USD), in addition to an additional £680 per person/per month for any dependents.
 

Let us evaluate the expenses of the numerous forms of student visas available in the United Kingdom:
 

Visa typeVisa fee
General student visa (Tier 4)  The application fee is £363 or 29,395 INR, in addition to £680 per person with dependents.
Tier 4 (Child) student visa        The application fee for a Tier 4 (child) student visa is £363 (about 29,395 INR), which includes the healthcare surcharge.
Visa for short-term studies        A visa for 11 months costs £200 (about 16,195 INR) plus a charge of £470.

 

UK Student Visa Requirements for Indian Students:


If you meet the following requirements, you are eligible to apply for a UK student visa from India:
 

  1. The candidate must be 16 years or older.
     
  2. The candidate must be financially capable of paying the course fee. Additionally, they must be self-sufficient throughout their stay.
     
  3. The candidate must possess an offer from an accredited academic institution.
     
  4. The candidate's English language test results must meet a minimum standard.
     

What Documents Are Required for an Indian Student Visa to the United Kingdom?
 

The following documents are necessary to obtain a student visa:
 

  1. Passport must be valid.
     
  2. Form for visa application
     
  3. a current photograph of passport size
     
  4. Documentation proving payment of the visa fee/application fee
     
  5. Monetary evidence or proof of funds
     
  6. Acceptance for Studies Acceptance (CAS)
     
  7. Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certification is necessary (If needed)
     
  8. Tuberculosis medical test results
     
  9. Restitution for the Immigration Healthcare Fee (IHS)
     
  10. Agreement in writing with the sponsor (in case of sponsorship)
     
  11. Certificate of criminal record
     

If you are under 18 years old, you may be required to produce further paperwork. They are listed below: 
 

  1. Evidence of parental or legal guardian consent
     
  2. Proof of parental or legal guardian relationship, such as a copy of the birth certificate or another official document listing the parents' names.
     
  3. English English Proficiency Exams for UK Student Visa
     
  4. You must demonstrate your command of the English language. The level is measured using the CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) scale. 

As evidence, you must pass the Secure English Language Test (SELT).
 

Level of academicEnglish skill level (CEFR)
Below degree levelB1
Degree level or aboveB2

Please note that if you have applied for a course at the bachelor's level or higher, you must:
 

  1. The provider is able to evaluate your English language skills.
  2. You may need to take a different examination. The test results must, however, be comparable to the B2 level. 


How to apply online for a student visa? 
 

Step 1: Determine whether you are eligible for a student visa as the initial stage. You must provide evidence that you have - A spot at the desired institution, university, or college that is assured. It is known as a "confirmation of acceptance for study" (CAS). A suitable quantity of funds (sometimes referred to as maintenance or finances') to cover your course fees and living expenses in the United Kingdom.
 

Step 2: Prepare your documentation.
 

Step 3: Submit an online application. Accepting online application submissions.
 

On the official UK Visa website, registration and account creation are required.
 

After completing your application online, you must print and sign the form. To schedule a visa application facility appointment, you must utilize the online appointment calendar. When your online application is complete, you will receive an email including your application number.
 

Step 4: Pay the required application cost. There are four ways to pay the visa application fee.
 

Payment at Standard Chartered Bank - You can pay your bill at certain Standard Chartered Bank locations. The bank will deliver a demand draught to "The British High Commission."
 

Demand draught from a local or international bank - You may pay your fee with a demand draught from a domestic or international bank. The bank will charge varying fees for this service. The proposed demand must be issued in the name of "The British High Commission."
 

Payment at the visa application center - You can pay the visa application fee at the visa application center when you submit your visa application
 

Pay online - If you have a Visa or MasterCard credit or debit card, you may pay your visa application expense online.
 

Step 5 – On the designated date, go to the visa application facility. You must arrange and attend an appointment at the visa application facility in order to submit your application, photographs, and fingerprints.
 

UK student visa procedure in detail - 
 

UK Student Visa Process   The application process for a student visa to the United Kingdom is straightforward if you have all of the required documentation. The procedure is predominantly conducted online. 
How to apply for a British student visa in India?

The first step of the UK student visa application process in India is determining your eligibility for the visa.

Wait for the university to issue you a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies outlining the length of your chosen programme.

What about funds? 

Maintain sufficient funds in your bank account to demonstrate that you can handle your tuition and living expenses.

Register on the official website for UK visas.

Complete the online application form for your UK student visa and book an appointment using the calendar. Include your Tuberculosis certificate, English proficiency scores, and biometric information along with your application.

Pay your £363 visa application cost.

What about the interview? 

Conduct a scheduled interview at the given time.

The waiting period commences once an online application for a UK student visa has been submitted. If you experience any issues with the online form, please contact the school that is sponsoring you. 

Waiting period The waiting period commences once an online application for a UK student visa has been submitted. If you experience any issues with the online form, please contact the school that is sponsoring you.
Timing of UK Student Visa Processing

Normal processing time for a student visa in the United Kingdom is three weeks (15 days) following the submission of a complete application. Students can call the British High Commission or VFS, which manages visa application facilities for the UK Border Agency in India, to inquire about any delays.

Applicants can also determine the progress of their visa application by subscribing to the VFS SMS alert service or by using their online monitoring system. If your UK student visa application has been delayed due to complexity, such as:

  1. Your supporting materials must be verified.
  2. A personal circumstances interview is required (for example, if you have a criminal conviction)

 

UK student visa new rules 2023 - 24


EU students will be entitled to study in the UK for up to six months without a visa. This includes individuals who intend to study for only one semester in the United Kingdom. Those who wish to study in the United Kingdom for longer than six months must apply for a full visa for the duration of their studies at TASIS England.
 

UK student-dependent visa


1. From January 2024, international students in taught master’s programs—including business master’s and MBA degrees—will no longer be allowed to bring family members as dependents to the UK.

2. The United Kingdom will now only allow international students who are on postgraduate courses currently designated as research programmes such as a PhD to bring in their family members, including children and elderly parents, as their dependants.

3. There have been no changes to the current graduate visa system which allows degree graduates to stay and work in the UK after finishing their programs.
 

What is the minimum required bank balance for a UK student visa? 
 

Prior to applying for a student visa to study in the United Kingdom, Indian students are required to have between 12 and 15 lakhs.
 

  1. The required quantity of funds is determined by the institution attended. 
  2. You must have either: Monthly tuition in London is $1,329 (for up to 9 months). 
  3. Outside of London, monthly tuition is £1,023. (for up to 9 months). 
     

Tips about writing SOP to your favorite university: 
 

  • What unique characteristics of a university did you appreciate?
  • What hobbies and interests complement your career objectives?
  • Would you do research or seek employment after completing the course? 
     

A SOP should highlight your previous academic experiences, accomplishments, and challenges. This section should also include information regarding professional experience and future objectives. The candidate should describe their academic abilities and how they would enhance their prospects of admission to the institution. Candidates can list their extracurricular or leadership activities on this form. This provides readers with crucial information about candidates' leadership and administrative qualities.
 

If applying for advanced courses, applicants should highlight their professional achievements and honors. They can discuss how they intend to enhance their jobs via hard work and perseverance. This enables admissions staff to judge whether a candidate has the capacity to thrive in their field and is capable of handling the responsibilities.
 

Consequently, if you decide to study in the United Kingdom, your work prospects are virtually endless. With so many prestigious universities and courses available in the UK, the admissions process is certain to be complicated. For more detailed information and assistance on applying for visa in the UK, please connect with our study abroad partners right away!  
 

FAQs  
 

Ques1. Can I get a UK student visa without taking the IELTS?

Ans- Yes, you can obtain a UK study visa without IELTS provided you can demonstrate to the immigration authorities that you are eligible for a study visa without IELTS.


Ques 2. Can Tier 4 student visa holders work in the UK?

Ans - Student / Tier 4 visa holders are not permitted to work in the United Kingdom. Visitors and students on short-term study visas are prohibited from working in the United Kingdom. After completing your new course, you may work full-time for the duration stipulated on your initial visa (usually four months).


Ques 3. Can student visas be extended in the UK?

Ans - There is currently no automatic extension of a UK student visa. However, if your visa expires and you are unable to return to your home country, or if your course has been extended, you will need a legal means to remain in the nation.


Ques 4. Can you marry while in the United Kingdom on a student visa?

Ans - There are no limits on getting married in the United Kingdom while on a valid Tier 4 student visa. Considering that some marriages can take months to prepare, if your study visa is slated to expire before your wedding, you will need to either extend it or apply for a spouse visa.
 

Ques 5. Can I change my visitor visa to a student visa in the UK?

Ans - No. In the United Kingdom, you cannot alter your Visitor Visa to another type of visa. The Visitor Visa is meant for temporary trips to the United Kingdom, not a permanent residence. For this opportunity, the Visitor Visa is not one of the various visa options accessible in the United Kingdom.
 

Ques 6. Can I travel throughout Europe with my British student visa?

Ans - Students with a UK visa may need to apply for a visa to travel for tourism or business within the European Union. The Schengen Area comprises 26 EU member states, and a Schengen visa may be required for entry. This visa permits a maximum of 90 days of travel within a period of six months.


Ques 7. Can student visa dependents work in the UK?

Ans - Any dependents older than 16 will be permitted to work full-time in the United Kingdom. Except for training as a physician or dentist, there are no constraints on the type of work they can perform.

Harsh Ranjan
Harsh Ranjan

Digital Mktg. Manager

A seasoned marketer with the ability to craft narratives that elevate brands and drive volume. Harsh loves researching, finding new ways to connect with potential audiences

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