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Simple Guide for a Tourist UK Visa

After months of planning and speculation, I will finally embark upon the very first of my international escapades in June 2014; I’m scheduled to fly out from Mumbai, India on the 3rd of June, to begin what I’m sure will be my greatest experience as a Nomad till date. I will be traveling through the United Kingdom including London, Birmingham, Lake District and Scotland, before flying out to a destination I’ve been dreaming of, since the moment I was introduced to the works of William Butler Yeats – the Emerald Isle or the Republic of Ireland.

Probably the greatest bane for an Indian traveler, is holding an Indian Passport. Despite the global tourist frenzy about India, the country is known for an annoyingly long and cumbersome immigration process. This, along with having an infamous reputation for shipping large volumes of long-term settlers to developed countries in the past, adds to the woes of the first-time Indian traveler. The tourist UK visa is considered amongst the most complex and difficult visas to receive, especially for a single, recently-employed Asian traveler like me; add to that, the fact that their websites provide vague and restricted information around eligibility/approval criteria and you have yourself staring a nightmare in the face. I hope this post will act as a one-stop shop for all first time travelers to the UK and make the process a little easier for everybody.

Determining Your Visa Category

6 comments

  1. Despite the Visa frustrations, your upcoming travels sound great! Can’t wait to hear more!

  2. I thank my lucky stars I have a Canadian passport- I saved about 2 hours in the line at JFK because of that!
    Enjoy your trip!

  3. Hi Sanket, Is it necessary to subit documents related to scotland travel when u r applyin for UK visa? I have applied for UK visa, but going to scotland is still not sure.. what should I do…If I have written Scotland in my VISA application but I have not submitted any travel or hotel bills of scotland , then will it still get accepted?

    Thanks

    Aditya

    • mm

      Hi Aditya,

      Thanks for stopping by. To be honest, the UK embassy doesn’t give clear instructions on what documents to submit. You don’t necessarily have to mention you are traveling to Scotland. Here’s what is necessary: you need to prove that if you are in the UK for 20 days, you have enough funds for your sustenance for 20 days. I’d say return flight tickets are an absolute must, because then they know you have a strong motivator to return. After that, you may or may not make confirmed accommodation bookings. The thing with this is – if you make and show accommodation bookings, then your bookings need to match up with the itinerary you are sharing. If not, then you can get away with not showing accommodation bookings but having access to enough funds to be able to book on the go. I’d recommend that you build a simple itinerary to attach with your application, and make fully-refundable bookings that match. Try using Booking.com – you will find many options that are 100% refundable. If you have other questions, feel free to email me.

      Also, this article is from some time ago. Please be careful to review current policies on the UK immigration office website.

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