How long is a UK visa valid for

A visa is a travel document required to enter a particular country. Therefore, if you plan to travel to the UK, there are different types of visas that you can acquire. Different visas may have different validities; therefore, you may need a longer valid visa if you plan to visit the UK repeatedly.

As you read ahead, you will know more about the different visa types and their validity, what the short term and long term visas are, and what happens if you stay more than the visa's validity period! Therefore, continue reading ahead to know more about visa validity!

What are the Different UK Visa Types?

There are many different types of UK visas. This includes the UK visitor visa, the UK transit visa, tourist visa, student visa, family visa, transit visa, business visa, etc.

Short Term UK Visas

Short term visas allow foreign travelers to stay in the UK for a short period. This short period is normally up to six months. In these six months, you can do whatever you wish; however, you must leave the UK once this period is over.

Short term visas are primarily for tourism, study, business, marriage visitor visa, etc.

The tourist visa allows you to visit the UK for tourism purposes and enjoy your time exploring the country. The United Kingdom business visa allows individuals to conduct business activities in the UK. This includes attending business meetings and conferences or managing important deal

s. Tourist visas are not just short term as these visas can also have long term validity, as some tourist visas have a validity of 10 years.

The short term study visa also allows individuals to travel to the UK to enroll in a short course. The short term standard visitor visa also allows individuals to visit their family and friends in the UK.

You cannot use the short term visa to reside in the UK for a longer time, and neither can you use the short term visa to gain employment in the UK.

Long Term UK Visas

The other types of visa are the long term standard visitor visa. These visas allow individuals to stay in the UK for extended periods. This long term UK visa validity can be either 2, 5, or 10 years. You can make frequent or successive visits with the help of these visas.

Even though the visa expiry date is later than in the short term visa, you can only stay for a maximum of six months with the long term visa at once.

The long term visas can be for students who want to study in the UK longer. Moreover, spouse visa is for spouses of UK residents and allows spouses to stay in the UK for 2.5 years.

Skilled workers will also need long term visas to stay in the UK and work.

Can You Extend Your Stay in the UK?

If you have a short term visa, you may ask for an extension of your current visa. And your visa will be extended. You can apply for a visa extension if you receive medical treatment in the UK and must stay longer. Or, if you want to pursue another course and are on a short term study visa, you can apply for an extension.

What Happens If You Overstay on Your Visa?

If you are found to be staying for an extra time in the UK, by the UK border control or the immigration officer, which violates the rule of your visa validity, strict actions may be taken against you. You can be deported back to your country. Moreover, pulling off such an act can result in having trouble getting a visa another time, and the next time, your visa request may not be processed.

You might be forbidden from entering the UK or applying for a UK visa for the next few years for overstaying. Hence, if you are overstaying in the UK without any proper reason, you have committed a crime and will be refused entry.

How to Apply for a UK Visitor Visa?

To apply for a standard visitor visa, visit the UK Embassy, Consulate, or the visa application center. You can also apply online, and sites like VisaHQ can facilitate you with the online application procedure. Once you visit VisaHQ, you can choose your home country and view the visa information the site displays for the UK.

To apply for the visa, you must first choose the type of visa you want to apply for; you must fill out the visa application online and then gather the required documents. The documents include having a valid passport, passport pictures, proof of sufficient funds, an invitation letter if required, and other optional documents, which you will find on VisaHQ. Lastly, you must pay the visa fee; otherwise, your visa request will not be processed further.

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    This article was published by VisaHQ, a world leader in visa processing. Since 2003, VisaHQ has 20 offices in 6 countries and has helped countless tourist, business travellers, diplomats, workers, and students obtain their visa. With a 4.41 star rating on, VisaHQ is committed to innovation, service, security, and simplicity in the visa application process.