If you're under 18

You may visit the UK if you’re under 18 and:

  • you’ve made suitable arrangements for your travel and stay in the UK
  • you have written consent from your parent or guardian to travel to the UK (if travelling alone)
  • you’re able to pay for your return or onward journey
  • you have enough money to support yourself without working or getting help from public funds, or you have family and friends that can support you

Travelling alone

You can travel to the UK without an adult (someone over the age of 18).

Your parent or guardian will need to provide their:

  • written consent for you to travel to the UK
  • full contact details

They’ll also need to provide proof that you have somewhere suitable to live during your stay in the UK, including:

  • the name and date of birth of the person that you will be staying with
  • an address where you will be living
  • details of your relationship to the person who’ll be looking after you and
  • their written consent for you to stay with that person while you’re in the UK

If you’re not staying with a close relative

Your parent, guardian or school must tell the relevant local authority about your visit if you’re both of the following:

  • under 16 (or under 18 if you have a disability)
  • going to be looked after for more than 28 days by someone who is not a close relative (called ‘private foster care’)

You should provide a reply from the local authority if you have one.

The same rules apply to education exchange visits that last for more than 28 days, unless:

  • you’re part of a group that is travelling and staying together, for example a school group
  • you’re accompanied by an adult, for example a teacher

There are different rules in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Read the guidance for more information.

Travelling with an adult

When travelling to the UK with an adult (someone over the age of 18), you’ll need to identify them in your visa application.

If the person you’re travelling with is not your parent, you’ll need to provide specific information about them in your application.

You can identify up to 2 adults in your visa application. Their names will appear on your visa.

The adult can apply for a visa at the same time, but you must each complete separate applications.

If you arrive in the UK without the person named in your visa, you’ll need to show that your parent or guardian consents to your travel and accommodation arrangements.

  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. Step 2 Prepare the evidence you need

  3. Step 3 Apply

    The cost of your visa depends on how long it’s valid for.

    1. Apply for a visa and book an appointment £95 to £822
    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 £220 for a decision within 5 working days or £956 for a decision within 24 hours (not including weekends or bank holidays). Check with your visa application centre.

    If your visa allows you to stay in the UK for longer than 6 months, you’ll get a biometric residence permit. You don't need to apply for this separately.

  4. Step 4 Attend an appointment

    1. What you need to prove at 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
  7. Step 7 After you arrive in the UK

    Check your visa to find out when you must leave the UK. If you break the conditions of your visa you may not be able to return to the UK again.