Standard Visitor Visas

What are Standard Visitor visas? 

UK Visas & Immigration has changed the short study visa rules, and you now apply for a Short-term Study Visa if you are going to study an English-language programme only (for example our General English course). For all other students on short courses of less than 6 months, you are now permitted to carry out this study with a Standard Visitor visa. Most Study Abroad & Exchange students will come to the UK for a semester of exchange using the Standard Visitor route.

If you are coming to the UK to study English language only, you may be able to get a 6 or 11 month Short-term Study visa.

Important conditions of Standard Visitor visas:

  • You are not permitted to work or volunteer whilst in the UK
  • You cannot switch from a Standard Visitor visa to any other type of visa while in the UK. You would have to return to your home country and re-apply for the different visa (such as a Student Visa) from there.

If you are a visa national then you will have to apply for a Standard Visitor visa in advance of travelling to the UK. 

6-month visa application fee: £97

11-month visa application fee: £186

Non-visa nationals can travel to the UK with University acceptance documents and receive the Standard Visitor stamp at the UK airport. Please note these stamps are NOT available if you travel to the UK via Ireland.

Find out if you are a visa national or non-visa national

IMPORTANT: e-Gates are now in use at UK airports. If you are of a certain nationality then you may be able to use the e-Gates to speed up your entry to the UK. However, if you require a Standard Visitor stamp in your passport then you must NOT use the e-Gates and will instead need to see a Border Official in person.

Please view this important e-Gate Eligibility and Instructions

To find out more about Standard Visitor visas, please see the UK Visa & Immigration website: Standard Visitor visas

Useful Resources:

Applying for a UK Visit Visa (PDF, .4MB)

Top Tips for a UK Visit Visa Application (PDF, 2.7MB)

Any questions?

If you have any questions about short-term study visas, E:


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