Visa to study in the UK: Everything you need to know

By 23rd June 2023Which Boarding School

Since Brexit, all students under the age of 18 who come to the UK to study for more than 6 months must obtain a visa to study in the UK – this is called the Child Study Visa.

To decide whether your child needs to apply for this visa, you must take into account the fact that the time period begins on the day of arrival into the country. This time period continues to roll on regardless of the number of times the child leaves and re-enters the UK. Therefore, a stay of over 6 months is any course that lasts more than 6 months from the beginning to the end, including holidays.

When to apply for the visa to study in the UK and how long it lasts

The application for a visa to study in the UK must be made while the student is outside of the UK. Ideally, one should apply before the term begins – you can apply up to 6 months in advance.

– Under 16s can request their visa for a maximum period of 6 years (plus 4 additional months at the end).
– Students between 16 and 17 years of age can have their visa for a maximum of 3 years (plus 4 additional months at the end).

You can apply for a visa which allows the student to arrive up to a month before the beginning of the course, but the student must not arrive at the UK before the date specified on the visa.

What is the cost of a visa to study in the UK?

The cost is £348, plus medical insurance. The medical insurance is essential to obtain the visa and the cost varies depending on the duration of the stay in the UK.

What can and can’t be done with a visa to study in the UK?

This visa is only given to students who have a place at a private school in the UK, and this school must be on a specific list of institutions which can accept student visas. Every school that we work with here at Which Boarding School is on this list and will be able to provide you with any necessary documentation.

In the UK, young people can work from the age of 16. For those older than 16 (but under 18), this visa will also give them the right to work:

– Part-time for a maximum of 10 hours a week during the school term.
– Full-time during the holidays.

The visa to study in the UK does not allow the student to:

– Study at a local authority-funded school.
– Obtain benefits.
– Work full time or be self-employed.
– Work as a professional sportsperson.
– Apply for Settled Status.
– Bring a family member with them. If parents want to accompany their child there is a different visa specifically for that. Ask us for information on that and we will advise you.

What information is necessary to obtain a visa to study in the UK?

All the schools that we work with are institutions accepted by the government, so a place at one of these schools will guarantee you the necessary documentation to apply.

For boarding schools, if the applicant is Spanish, they will not need to provide evidence that they have sufficient funds to pay the school fees. However, they may ask you for evidence before granting the visa.

Necessary documentation to apply for a visa to study in the UK:

– Valid passport.
– Confirmation of a place in the school.
– Written consent from both parents or legal guardians for the student’s stay in the UK (unless the legal responsibility falls only on one person, in which case the consent from only this one person would be valid).
– Birth certificate or family record book which shows the parental relationship with the student.

The application should be made online and with the student outside of the UK.