If you’re interested in studying in the UK, it’s time to consider your visa.
The first step is to apply for a Certificate of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).
Although this process is straightforward, there are some essential steps that you need to take along the way.
This guide will help you complete your CAS application and prepare for your visa interview at the Visa Application Centre (VAC) – all without any problem!
Apply for a CAS
You can apply for a CAS online, but you will need to have a valid passport and pay a fee of £50.
The CAS number is your unique identifier that allows British immigration officials to check the validity of your application.
If you don’t have one yet, it’s easy to get one by following this link:
Complete the UK Student Visa application form
When you’re filling out your form, remember to:
Fill in the application form. You can’t change or add information after you’ve submitted it.
Make sure you have all the documents required by UK immigration officials (see below). If anything is missing, they won’t let you in!
Make sure that your salary is enough for living costs and expenses while studying at a university or college in England—it might be higher than expected because of inflation over time, but don’t go overboard on spending money before getting approved. Also, make sure that there are enough funds left over after paying for tuition fees and other expenses like books/supplies/etcetera if necessary; this way, there won’t be any surprises once arriving back home again later down the line!
Prepare your finances
- You’ll need to find out how much it will cost to study in the UK.
Find out how much money you will need for accommodation and living expenses. You can use the Government’s student visa calculator, which estimates your tuition fees if you were a home student or if your parents paid for everything (this is called “self-funding”). If this isn’t possible, consider looking at other options, such as using scholarships or grant funding sources like Oxfam.
- Find out how much you will need for travel costs while studying in London: flights/train tickets; bus fares; taxi fares; food costs (to keep up your energy levels).
Check your required language level.
The first step in applying for a student visa is to check your required language level.
This requirement varies depending on your nationality, where you apply, and the course type you plan to study.
The highest level at which students can apply for a UK visa is A2 (advanced). This means they will have studied at least two years of full-time Higher Education courses (or equal).
Students who have completed their studies but do not hold an A2 certificate may apply if they meet one of these exceptions:
- They hold an English language qualification at level B1 or above; or
- They have an Irish Language qualification at NQF–7; or
- They are over 18 years old and live outside Northern Ireland.*
Book an appointment at the Visa Application Centre (VAC)
To book an appointment at the VAC, you can do so online.
The process is quick and easy, but you must bring all your documents when visiting in person.
- Attend the appointment
- Bring your passport and visa application form.
- Bring your original academic papers (such as degree certificates).
- Bring your original English language test results for all official purposes, including proof of your English language proficiency.
If you are applying for a Tier 4 student visa, this must be no older than two years from the date that the course started at this university; if it’s more than two years old, you need to submit additional evidence of your proficiency in English.
- For Tier 4 students only: Bring CAS reference number or confirmation number as well as payment details depending on what type of visa you are applying for (Tier 4 Student Visa or Tier 5 Graduate Entrepreneur International Graduate Entrepreneur Visa). You must also provide proof that there will be enough funds available upon arrival in the UK (e-mail address and bank account details).
You can do it.
The UK student visa process is long, but it’s worth it. It takes time, patience and organization to get everything in order before you leave for your new home country, but things will move once you start applying for visas and enrolling in courses.
The process is designed to make sure that everyone who wants to study abroad has access to their education opportunity—and if something goes wrong along the way (which happens), there are people ready with helpful tips on how best to deal with an issue or problem before moving forward with your plans.
So take heart: even though taking a semester off from school might seem impossible at first glance, it’ll be worth it when all is said and done!
The Last Word
You’re almost there! Congratulations on your journey to the UK.
It can be a little scary and overwhelming, but we hope that by following our steps, you will find the visa process much less daunting.