UK student visa application
Roshna Mohan

Roshna Mohan is a Content Writer at Hotcourses India - an IDP company. A post-graduate in Biotechnology, she chose content writing as her career out of sheer interest. Reading and cooking are her stress-busters. Talk about these to take the introvert out of the ambivert. Her all-time favourite authors are Paulo Coelho, Yuval Noah Harari and Robin Cook.

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30 Jun 2021 3.7K Book icon 7 mins Share

How to apply for the UK student visa

Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you plan, prepare, and apply for the UK Student visa.

30 Jun 2021 3.7K Book icon 7 mins Share
UK student visa application

Deciding to study abroad may sound daunting but in reality, it is a fantastic way to expand horizons and advance career potential. Many international students opt for higher education in British institutions, as the English approach to teaching encourages students to think creatively and apply ideas into practice in the real world. Studying in a cosmopolitan country that celebrates cultural, racial and ethnic diversity, results in an excellent learning experience.

International students in order to study in the UK have to acquire a student visa from the British High Commission near them. Before we break down the steps for getting a UK student visa, let’s learn the latest updates on visa and immigration in the UK. You can also reach out to our counsellors for more information.

The point-based system for the UK student visa

The UK follows the point-based system for student visas. International students must get 70 points to be eligible for a study visa to the UK. Before you start worrying about it, let us make it clear that it is easy to get those 70 points. You will have to satisfy the following criteria:

  • You should meet the study requirements. These include getting an offer from an approved higher education institution. This will get you 50 points.
  • You should be able to prove your English language proficiency. 10 points.
  • You should be able to provide proof that you’ll be able to handle the expenses involved for the entire duration of your stay. This will add another 10 points to your kitty.

The point-based system has made the visa process more streamlined. Another advantage is that, under this system, you can apply for a visa up to 6 months before the course start date.

Also, there is no cap to the number of international students that can come to the United Kingdom. So, follow the below steps and get ready to fly to the UK!

1.Get your documents ready

The first step to get your UK student visa would be to ensure that you meet all the requirements to gain 70 points as per the point-based system for student visas. You should be ready with the following documents before you begin your application.

Passport

This needs no further explanation. Just make sure you have a blank page in your passport to stamp your visa.

Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies

(CAS or Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies is something that the university generates and emails you. It includes details like the CAS number, the details about your course and your place of study, your qualifications that were analysed, proof of your English language proficiency etc.)

Proof of finances

You have to prove that you have enough money to support yourself for the course of your stay in the UK. This will be between GBP 1023 and GBP 1334 per month for a minimum of 9 months. (10 lakhs to 14 lakhs per month for 9 months). If your institution is in London, the cost will be higher.

Consent from parents or legal guardians if you are 16 or 17

The UK government website says that you can apply for a if you are above 16. But you will need to submit evidence of consent from parents or legal guardians if you are 16 or 17.

TB test report

If you are going to the UK for more than 6 months, you should submit proof of not having pulmonary tuberculosis. Your test must be taken from a clinic approved by the Home Office. Some of the places that have approved clinics include Bengaluru, Chennai, Kochi, Nagpur, Pune, Kolkata and Mumbai.

The test will generally involve a chest x-ray. If it is not clear enough, you might have to give a sputum sample. Make sure you call up the clinic and book an appointment before you go for the test. You should specifically mention that it is for UK visa purposes.

The test will cost you somewhere between Rs 2000 and 2500.

The certificate that you get will be valid for 6 months.

Failing to take the test or if you test positive for TB, you will not be permitted to travel until you take the test and when you are free of TB.

Proof of English proficiency

It is important that you know English and successfully demonstrate this by taking any of the accepted English language tests. Needless to say, you should be able to read, write, speak and understand English as it will be the medium of instruction in your university in the UK. IELTS is accepted by all universities and colleges in the UK. Universities will have a set IELTS score requirement. Make sure you meet this.

There are more than 80 IELTS test centres in India. With a valid ID, you’ll be able to register for a test. Goa, Chennai, Trivandrum, Calicut, Coimbatore etc. have rest centres. You can choose the test centre that is closest to you. The cost of the test is around 15,000 INR.

It will take around 13 days for your IELTS test results to arrive. Hence, plan your test day accordingly. Contact us and our counsellors can guide you in this.

Visa application fee-payment confirmation detail

Once you apply for the online, you’ll be paying a fee. A payment confirmation should be included along with the documents to be submitted.

Read more on procedures for submitting documents

2.Fill in the visa application online

UK student visa application can be made online

Once you have all your documents ready, you can fill in the visa application online. If you had travelled elsewhere before, have the travel history handy. You have the option to save the form and come back to it later, if required.

Pay the visa application fee in INR

Once you make the application online, you’ll be asked to pay the visa application fee. The UK student visa application fee is currently INR 37260. If you have family members accompanying you to the UK, you will have to pay the same amount for them too. You will also have to pay for Immigration Health Surcharge which will be added to your visa application fee.

The total IHS depends on a couple of factors. However, it will be around INR 48000 for every year of your stay in the UK. You will need an HIS reference number to complete your visa application.

3.Book an appointment with the visa application centre

The next step after filling the UK student visa application and paying the fee, would be to book an appointment with VFS Global for your visa interview. You will be asked to register first. VFS Global or the Visa Facilitation Services Global is the organisation that processes your visa.

Once you register with VFS Global, you will have the option to upload all your documents online. If you would prefer help with this, you can opt for the professional service offered by VFS. INR 1000 is charged for this service. VFS also offers premium packages to speed up your visa application process.

You will also book your appointment for your visa application and to provide your biometrics.

4.Visit the visa application centre

When you visit the visa application centre, make sure you carry the following:

  • The letter confirming your appointment
  • Your passport with at least 1 page blank on both sides for stamping your visa
  • The first page of your visa application form
  • All the supporting documents (if you had not uploaded it online)

At the visa application centre, you should enrol your biometric information as part of the UK student visa application process.  The Embassy will not process your visa application unless you have provided your biometric information.

Digital fingerprints of all 10 and a digital photo of your full face will be collected as part of the biometric collection. The procedure requires no extra fee and it is quick and simple.

Read more on procedures for medical test and biometric examination.

You will learn about the results of your UK student visa application through email. This will take around 3 weeks. If you would like to receive SMS updates, you can opt for this VFS service. The email you receive will detail what needs to be done by you next.

Your tasks do not end here. Read further.

5.Collecting your documents

Once you get the response, you should go back to the visa application centre to collect the documents you submitted. This should be done in person. Alternatively, you can opt for the courier service.

Carry the receipt issued by the visa application centre along with an ID proof when you go to collect your documents.

If there is a discrepancy in your visa, you should contact the VFS call centre immediately. Read more on procedures for collecting your visa and supporting documents

What if your UK student visa application is refused?

UK student visa can be rejected if your application don't meet all the requirements.

If your application is refused, you’ll be informed in the email and the reason for refusal will be explained. You can request for review under the ‘Administrative Review’ option. For Administrative Review, you have 28 days from the date of getting the decision. The cost of applying for a review is around 8300 INR.

Read more on procedures at the interview

Procedures while in the UK 

As soon as you arrive in the UK, you may need to show evidence of your reasons to be in the UK to an immigration officer. Along with your hand luggage you should carry copies of the documents that you used to get your visa. You won’t experience any trouble when you arrive in the UK, if:

  • You provided the Embassy with all the information relevant to your stay in the UK when you applied for a visa
  • You did not, with or without your knowledge, provide false information to support your application, and
  • There has been no adjustment to your circumstances or your reasons for travelling to the UK, given that the visa was issued

If you are discovered that you have submitted false information to support your application, you will not be allowed to enter the country and will be automatically refused a visa for 10 years for using deception on an application. Read more on Procedures while in the UK

Have you picked the institution of your choice to study in the UK? You can use our Course Matcher tool to pick the right one for you. If you need more information about the institutions and courses, you can download the prospectuses of UK institutions or reach out to our counsellors. Don’t forget to check out our international student news page where we compile study-abroad information from around the world.

All the Best.

List of the UK Embassies and Consulates

New Delhi

British High Commission
Chanakyapuri
New Delhi 110021

Phone: +91 (0) 11 2419 2100 (24 hrs a day)
Website: http://ukinindia.fco.gov.uk

Office hours:

Mon-Fri: 0900-1700
Mon-Fri:  0930-1230 (Consular)

Chennai

British Deputy High Commission
20 Anderson Road
Chennai 600 006

Phone: (91) (44) 4219 2151
Emergency number: +91 (0) 11 2419 2100
Website: http://ukinindia.fco.gov.uk

Office hours:

Mon-Thu: 0830-1630
Friday: 0830-1330

Bangalore

British Deputy High Commission
23 Kasturba Road Cross
Bangalore 560001

Phone: (91) (80) 2210 0200
Emergency number: +91 (0) 11 2419 2100
Website: http://ukinindia.fco.gov.uk

Office hours: Mon-Thu: 0830 - 1630
Friday: 0830 - 1330

Kolkata

British Deputy High Commission
1A Ho Chi Minh Sarani
Kolkata - 700071

Phone: (91) (33) 40822200
Emergency number: +91 (0)11 2419 2100
Website: http://ukinindia.fco.gov.uk

Office hours:

Mon - Thu: 0830 - 1630
 Fri – 0830 - 1630 (Consular)

Mumbai

British Deputy High Commission                  Naman Chambers,
C/32 G Block Bandra Kurla Complex,
Bandra (East) Mumbai 400 051
Phone: (91) (22) 66502222
Emergency number: +91 (0)11 2419 2100
Website: http://ukinindia.fco.gov.uk

Office hours:

Mon - Thu: 08.00 - 16.00
Friday: 08.00 - 13.00

Sri Lanka

British High Commission 389 Bauddhaloka Mawatha
Colombo - 7

Phone: 94 11 5390639
Website: http://ukinsrilanka.fco.gov.uk/en

Office hours: Mon - Thu: 0800-1630
Friday: 0800-1300
Mon - Fri: 0800-1200 (Consular)

Bangladesh

British High Commission          United Nations Road, Baridhara, P O Box 6079
Dhaka 1212

Phone: + (88) (02) 55668700
Website: http://ukinbangladesh.fco.gov.uk/en 

Office hours:

24/7 support for telephone enquiries.

Nepal

British Embassy
P O Box 106
Lainchaur

Phone: (977) (1) 4237100 http://ukinnepal.fco.gov.uk/en/

Office hours:

Mon-Thu: 0815-1700
Friday: 0815-1315
Mon-Fri: 08:15 - 12:30 (Consular)

Pakistan

British High Commission
Diplomatic Enclave, Ramna 5
P O Box 1122
Islamabad

Phone: + 92 (21) 35827000
Website: http://ukinpakistan.fco.gov.uk

Office hours:

Mon-Thu: 0800-1615
Friday: 0800-1300

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in January 2015. We have included up-to-date information and made it comprehensive.

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