The United Kingdom is one of the countries in the world that attracts a lot of migrants, especially from Africa. Most times the reason for this is that people are in search of greener pastures or a great holiday destination.
The UK is all of that and more. To visit most countries you need to get a visa before you travel or on arrival. For the UK, you must have a visa approved at the UK Embassy in your country.
Just in case you were wondering what a visa is, here is a simple definition. A visa is an endorsement made on the passport of an individual by the high commission or embassy of another country. This endorsement gives the bearer permission to enter the country and stay for a specified period of time. A breach of the time given can be detrimental to the bearer as future applications can be declined.
It is on record that several Ghanaians have a desire to visit the UK at some point in their lives. In this article, we shall discuss how to apply for a UK visa in Ghana. The information here will be quite easy to understand and apply so you are in for a great read.
Applying for UK visa in Ghana
The United Kingdom has worked on the existing requirements for visa application and a lot of amendments have been made. Applicants from Ghana have not been exempted so you must follow these regulations and meet the requirements if you are applying from Ghana. No need to be scared as the process has actually been simplified.
Take the following steps to complete your UK visa application in Ghana:
Step 1: Checking eligibility
To be eligible for the UK visa application process, you must satisfy the following requirements:
- For your first application, except in special cases, your proposed period of stay should not exceed six months.
- You are required to provide a proof that you will not exceed the proposed period of stay in the UK.
- Furthermore, you must be able to prove that you can cater for your accommodation and basic needs throughout your stay in the UK. If you are being invited over by family or friends, it must be stated in your invitation letter that all these needs can be catered for.
To get a full updated list of all the requirements you must meet before submitting a UK visa application, click here.
Step 2: Documents you are required to submit
Just like every other application, you are required to submit certain documents. The UK visa application process requires you to submit original copies of certain documents to the UKBA. This list is usually updated from time to time. Check below for the recent list of documents that you are required to submit:
- A printout of the application page duly appended by the applicant.
- An international passport with a minimum of one blank page on both sides. This is where the visa will be affixed.
- A quality passport photograph which is in conformity with the HM Passport office requirements.
- A printout of previous travel documents. This is needed if you have traveled out of the country before making this application.
- Documents to show marital status. Basically, if you are married you should provide a marriage certificate.
- Documents from school for a student, such as a transcript.
- You are also required to submit your employment papers to show your current employment status.
- You are required to present your health certificates to show if you are healthy enough to travel or not.
- Finally, you should present an evidence that you are a citizen of Ghana.
As stated earlier in this module, the list is updated regularly so before starting your application, you should check if there is any change from the list above. To do that simply click here.
Step 3: Choose your visa type
As expected, there are different classes of visa that you can apply for as provided by the UKBA office. Let’s go through a list of the different classes of UK visas below:
- Visitor’s visa – This visa is issued to a person who is traveling to the UK to visit family or friends. Usually, an invitation letter is required from the family member or friend resident in the UK. The longest a person can stay when issued this visa is six months.
- Tourist visa – This is issued to a person going to the UK for tourism or holiday purposes. The maximum stay duration on this visa is between three to six months.
- Business visa – This visa is issued to an entrepreneur planning to visit the UK to invest in the UK economy.
- Student visa –This visa is issued to a person who has been offered provisional admission to study in the UK. To submit the visa application the individual must provide an admission letter from the school. The duration of stay specified on the visa is dependent on the duration of the academic program.
- Work visa – This visa is issued to a person who has been offered a job in the UK. It has to be renewed periodically. To submit this application, the individual has to submit a letter from his/her new employers in the UK.
- Transit visa – This visa is issued to people who have to pass through the UK to get to their final destination.
- Health visa – This is issued to people visiting the UK for medical care.
Tips to follow when applying for a UK visa from Ghana
- Payment of the visa fees. Each class of visa has a specific price attached. You should find out find out from the UKBA the specific price for the visa you are applying for. You should ensure you bring the receipt when going to the application center. You should also submit your visa application within a month of paying the fees. To pay your fees, you can visit any of these Guaranty Trust Bank branches:
- Ridge branch, 25A Castle road, Ambassadorial Area, Ridge, PMB CT416 Cantonments, Accra.
- Labone branch, 3rdSoula Street, adjacent to the South African High Commission.
- Osu branch, Plot No. 577, Oxford Street, Osu R.E.
It is also possible to pay your fees at the visa application center, you are just going to be paying a little extra.
- Don’t be late on your visa application appointment. Ensure that you are on time and you can’t have lots of makeup as pictures will be taken as well as biometric information. You can visit the application site to find out more details.
- It takes up to six weeks for the visa application to be processed so you must make proper calculations so you don’t submit your application too late.
- Take your vaccinations. You are required to show proof of vaccinations. The major vaccinations are tuberculosis and hepatitis B and the results are valid for just six months.
There you have it, all the information you need on how to apply for UK visa in Ghana. Good luck with your application.
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