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.