Only British nationals, European Union citizens, non-EU member states of the European Economic Area (EEA – Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland), Switzerland, and members of the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCT) are exempt from needing a visa to enter the UK.
Since December 2013, citizens of Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates have been able to obtain an Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW) online. This allows them to visit or study for up to six months without a visa. For stays longer than six months, a visa is required.
Visa applications are started online via the Apply for a UK Visa website. Before starting your online application, check the website’s list of visa application centers so you know where you must go for your face to face appointment (it could be in another country).
How to apply for a UK visa?
To start application for a visa, you must enter the website mentioned above and choose your visa type. Then you will need to:
register for an account
fill out the application form (in English)
pay for the visa fee online if applicable
print out your form
book and attend an appointment at any of their listed visa application centers
If you are required to have an appointment, you must bring the following original (no photocopies are allowed) support documents (this does not guarantee that your visa will be approved and you must keep that in mind):
Valid travel documentation (passport or any document that allows you to travel internationally)
One passport sized photograph
Recommended Support Documents
Previous travel documentation
Financial documents to prove economic solvency, this can be in the form of a bank statement, proof of earnings (letter from employer, with start date of employment, salary, position and contact details), or letter and documentation from a third party that resides or visits the UK legally at the time of your stay, providing financial support (in addition to themselves and/or family)
Confirmation of legal residence (if you reside in a country that is not where your passport was issued)
Details of employment or studies (confirmation from education institute or employer confirming your enrollment)
Business registration documents if you are self employed
Visa Processing Time
The UK Consulate aims to operate a fast and effective visa service. Non-settlement applications are usually processed within 15 working days. However, every application must be considered individually.
You can check how long you will have to wait for a decision on your visa application if you applied from outside the UK under the following link: