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World Travel Guide > Guides > Europe > United Kingdom

United Kingdom Visa and Passport Requirements

Passport required Return ticket required Visa Required
Australian Yes No No
Other EU 1 No No
USA Yes No No
Canadian Yes No No
British N/A N/A N/A

Passports

A passport needs to be valid for the duration of stay to enter the United Kingdom. It is required by all nationals referred to in the chart above, except (1) EU nationals holding a valid national ID card. The UK government does not require your passport to be valid for a minimum period of six (6) months from the date of entry into the United Kingdom.

From May 2019, nationals from EU countries, Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the United States can make use of ePassport gates when entering the United Kingdom. Nationals of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland can use ePassport gates at some airports if the passport has the necessary ‘chip’ on it. This move should cut down queues at the immigration control considerably. All passport holders must be aged 12 or over to use ePassport gates.

EU nationals are only required to produce evidence of their EU nationality and identity in order to be admitted to any EU member state. This evidence can take the form of a valid national passport or national identity card. Either is acceptable. Possession of a return ticket, any length of validity on their document, or sufficient funds for the length of their proposed visit should not be imposed.

A passport is not required for British nationals travelling between Great Britain and Ireland (an official form of identification, such as a driver's licence, is required), Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man.

Passengers transiting the UK destined for the Republic of Ireland are advised to hold return tickets to avoid delay.

Visas

Many nationals can visit the UK without a visa. In addition to EU citizens who can travel freely into the United Kingdom, nationals from 56 countries can also enter the United Kingdom for stays of up to six months without a visa for tourism purposes. The countries include Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Dominica, East Timor, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Kiribati, Macau, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Micronesia, Namibia, Nauru, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Taiwan, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, United States of America, Uruguay, Vanuatu and Vatican City.

Nationals of Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates can obtain an electronic visa waiver (EVW) online.

Before travelling to the United Kingdom, it is best to check the entry requirements at www.gov.uk/check-uk-visa.

Visa Note

Nationals not requiring visas are advised to be in possession of either a return ticket or, if arriving on a one-way ticket, proof of sufficient funds to accommodate and support themselves for the duration of stay.

Nationals not referred to in the chart are advised to contact the embassy/high commission to check visa requirements for the United Kingdom.

Types and Cost

Standard Visitor visa: £95; long-term visit visa: £361 (two years); £655 (five years); £822 (ten years).

Validity

Standard Visitor visa: six months; long-term visit visa: two, five or 10 years, with a maximum stay of six months per visit.

Transit

Some nationals (but not those listed above) require a transit visa for the UK. The Direct Airside Transit visa costs £35 and allows you to change flights in the UK, but you must not pass through immigration control and must leave within 24 hours. The Visitor in Transit visa costs £64 and allows you to go through border control, but you must leave the UK within 48 hours. For both visas, you must prove you are in transit to another country. Long-term transit visas are available to frequent travellers.

Application to

Consulate (or consular section at embassy/high commission). In some countries, you can apply online. See the UK government website for details (www.gov.uk/visas-immigration).

Schengen Visas

The United Kingdom is not part of the Schengen area.

Working days

The length of time taken to process visa applications depends on the nationality of the applicant and the country where you're applying.

Sufficient Funds

If you do require a visa to visit the United Kingdom, you may be asked to provide information about your finances. 

Extension of stay

If you are initially permitted to enter for three months, you may apply to UK Visas and Immigration to extend your stay to six months from your original date of entry. You must apply online for a visa extension. As part of the application process, you’ll be asked to make a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services appointment to provide biometric information. The fee to extend your visa is £993 – a decision will be made within eight weeks. It costs an additional £800 if you use the super priority service. The decision will be made by the end of the following working day or two working days depending on whether your UKVCAS appointment in on a weekday or weekend.

See the UK government website for more details (www.gov.uk/standard-visitor-visa/extend-your-visa).

The maximum total time you can stay in the United Kingdom is six months.

Entry with pets

If bringing a pet from another EU or 'listed' country, your animal must have a microchip, pet passport or official third country veterinary certificate, rabies vaccination administered at least 21 days before travel, and tapeworm treatment (dogs only).

If bringing a pet from an unlisted country, your animal must be microchipped (before or at the same time as their rabies vaccination), official third country veterinary certificate, rabies vaccination, blood test taken at least 30 days after the rabies vaccination and at least three months before travel, and tapeworm treatment (dogs only).

For full details, see www.gov.uk/take-pet-abroad.


Our visa and passport information is updated regularly and is correct at the time of publishing,
We strongly recommend that you verify critical information unique to your trip with the relevant embassy before travel.

Embassies and tourist offices

Foreign and Commonwealth Office


Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7008 1500 (consular assistance).
Website: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/foreign-commonwealth-office
Address: , King Charles Street, London, SW1A 2AH,
Opening times:

Mon-Fri 0800-1700.

British Embassy in the USA


Telephone: +1 202 588 6500
Website: https://www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-embassy-washington
Address: NW, 3100 Massachusetts Avenue, Washington, 20008,
Opening times:

By appointment only. Mon-Fri 0900-1600 (telephone enquiries).

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