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The UK Standard Visitor visa has replaced several previous visitor visa categories. It permits individuals to visit Britain for short stays for various legitimate purposes, including leisure (such as tourism and visiting family and friends), engaging in business-related activities, attending sporting or creative events, and seeking private medical treatment.


When applying for a UK visitor visa, it's crucial to submit your application from outside the UK. An assessment will be conducted to determine if you meet the requirements outlined in the visitor rules and qualify as a genuine visitor. To demonstrate your eligibility, you'll need to provide supporting documents. Remember, failure to meet the visa requirements may result in a refusal and the forfeiture of your application fee.

It's important to note that you cannot switch to a different visa category from the visitor visa while you are in the UK. To apply for a different visa, you must return to your home country and submit the application from there.


The visitor visa generally lasts for 6 months.


Long-term visitor visas are an option for individuals seeking to make frequent visits over an extended period, ranging from 2 to 10 years. However, it's important to note that each stay is limited to a maximum of 6 months in the UK.


Permissible activities under the visitor visa route include:

  • Tourism

  • Visiting family or friends

  • Volunteering with a registered charity (up to 30 days)

  • Transiting through the UK

  • Certain business activities (e.g., attending meetings)

  • School exchange programs

  • Recreational courses (up to 30 days)

  • Short-term study, placement, or exam (up to 30 days)

  • Visiting as an academic, senior doctor, or dentist

  • Medical reasons


However, you are not allowed to:


  • Undertake paid or unpaid work for a UK company or be self-employed

  • Claim benefits or access public funds

  • Reside in the UK for long periods via frequent visits

  • Get married or register a civil partnership


Your purpose of travel is essential for determining your eligibility under the UK visitor visa. Understanding the permissible activities allowed under this visa category is crucial to avoid any violations during your stay in the UK.


You must be outside the UK to apply for a UK visitor visa. Fill out the online application form, submit supporting documents, and attend an appointment at a visa center in your country of residence. During the appointment, you'll be interviewed and provide biometric information.


If your visitor visa is refused:


  • Visitor visas may be refused for various reasons, including if the Home Office believes:

  • You are using the Visitor Visa scheme to live in the UK

  • You pose a threat to national security

  • You have breached the immigration rules in the past

  • You have unspent criminal convictions

  • You don’t appear to be a genuine visitor

  • You don’t have sufficient funds to support yourself in the UK

You do not normally have the right to appeal a Visitor Visa refusal. In most cases, we recommend preparing a fresh application that addresses the reason for your refusal. However, on some occasions, we advise submitting further representations to the Home Office Legal Department to challenge a refusal of a visitor visa (PAP). Our immigration lawyers can assist with all aspects and ensure it meets the criteria for a more successful outcome.


Why choose Visas 24/7 to represent your UK Visitor visa?

With over 23 years of experience, our lawyers specialise in guiding you through the intricate process of visa applications. We meticulously gather and prepare all necessary documentation, ensuring a comprehensive application package. Our team remains proactive in addressing any inquiries from the Home Office and provides continuous updates to our clients throughout the process.

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