Visa to pass through the UK in transit

3. Visitor in Transit visa

You may need a Visitor in Transit visa if you’ll be going through immigration control but leaving the UK within 48 hours and you’re:

You should first check if you need a visa.

You need to apply for another type of visitor visa if you’ll be staying in the UK for longer than 48 hours.

You should apply for a Direct Airside Transit visa if you’ll be changing flights in the UK without going through immigration control.

Travel to the Channel Islands, Isle of Man or Republic of Ireland

You need to apply for another type of visitor visa if you’ll be travelling to the Channel Islands, Isle of Man or Republic of Ireland.

You don’t need a UK visa if you have a valid visa for the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man and will travel through the UK to get there.

Long-term visit visa

You can also apply for a long-term visit visa if you can prove you need to pass through the UK in transit regularly over a longer period. You can stay for a maximum of 48 hours on each visit and your visa can last for 1, 2, 5 or 10 years.

You must prove that:

  • you have a frequent and ongoing need to pass through the UK in transit
  • the reason for your need to pass through the UK is unlikely to change significantly while the visa is valid
  • you plan to leave the UK at the end of each transit

You may be given a visa for a shorter period than requested if you don’t do this. You won’t get a refund of the application fee if you get a shorter visa or your application is refused.

Documents

You must provide a current passport or other valid travel identification.

You may need to provide additional documents depending on your circumstances - read the guidance for a full list.

Apply outside the UK

You must apply online for a Visitor in Transit visa.

You’ll need to have your fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information’) taken at a visa application centre as part of your application.

You may be able to get your visa faster or other services depending on what country you’re in - check with your visa application centre.

North Korea

You can’t apply online if you’re applying from North Korea.

Download the application form.

Read the instructions for applying from North Korea.