Choose a UK visit or short stay visa

Standard Visitor visa

Apply for this visa if you want to visit the UK on holiday or to see your family and friends, do business, take part in sports or creative events, or receive private medical treatment.

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
No, in most cases Yes (up to 30 days) but not as the main reason for your visit Up to 6 months, usually £93 (for 6 months)

Short-term study visa

Apply for this visa if you’re doing a short course of study or training in the UK.

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
No Yes 6 or 11 months £97 for 6 months, £186 for 11 months

Visa to pass through the UK in transit

Apply for this visa if you need to pass through the UK on your way to another country.

How long you can stay and how much the visa costs depends on whether you pass through UK border control.

If you go through border control

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
No No 48 hours £64

If you do not pass through border control

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
No No Your onward journey should be within 24 hours £35

Permitted Paid Engagement visa

You might be able to apply for this visa if you’ve been invited to the UK to do paid work as an expert in your profession.

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
Yes (if it’s related to your main job or area of expertise) Yes (up to 30 days) but not as the main reason for your visit Up to 1 month £93

Marriage Visitor visa

Apply for this visa if you want to get married or register a civil partnership in the UK, even if you don’t usually need a visa to visit the UK. Check everything you need to do to get married in the UK.

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
No, in most cases Yes (up to 30 days) but not as the main reason for your visit Up to 6 months £93

Parent of a Tier 4 child visa

Apply for this visa if your child attends an independent fee-paying day school in the UK and you want to stay with them.

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
No No 6 or 12 months £516

Visit the UK in a Chinese tour group

Apply for this visa if you’re a Chinese citizen that’s coming to the UK as part of a tour group through the approved destination status agreement (ADS).

Can work Can study How long you can stay Cost
No No Up to 30 days £93
  1. Step 1 Check if this visa is right for you

    You might be eligible for different visas depending on why you're visiting the UK and how long for.

    1. Check which visas you're eligible for
    2. You are currently viewing: Compare the different types of short stay visa
  2. Step 2 Prepare the evidence you need

  3. Step 3 Apply

    1. Apply for a visa and book an appointment £93
    2. Check where your visa appointment will be

    You should get a decision within 3 weeks of your appointment.

    You might be able to pay an extra £212 for a decision within 5 working days or £956 for a decision within 1 working day. Check with your visa application centre.

  4. Step 4 Attend an appointment

    1. What you need to prove at your appointment

    At your appointment you’ll have your fingerprints and photograph (‘biometric information’) taken.

    After your appointment you'll be told when a decision has been made about your visa.

  5. Step 5 Check what you can bring with you

  6. Step 6 Check what you need to show at the UK border

    1. Check what you need to show at the UK border

    Keep the documents that prove why you're visiting the UK in your hand luggage so you can show them if asked.

    1. Check the documents you can use to show why you're visiting the UK