The visa policy of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (UK) is the list of requirements and restrictions for nationals of other countries who wish to visit the UK.
The UK visa policy covers the four constituent countries that make up the United Kingdom: England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, as well as the Crown dependencies of the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands (the Bailiwick of Guernsey and the Bailiwick of Jersey).
There are a number of different types of visa for the UK. The type required depends on the foreign visitor’s nationality, length of stay, and purpose of travel.
Travelers from the majority of countries must apply for a visa for the United Kingdom at their nearest UK Visa Application Centre.
Types of visa that can be obtained at an application centre include the Standard Visitor visa for the purposes of tourism, business, and medical treatment, the Marriage Visitor visa, the UK work visa, various categories of student visa, and a number of other visa options.
Around 90 different nationalities currently do not require a visa to enter the UK for stays of up to 6 months.
The Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW) for the United Kingdom is required for citizens of a small number of visa-exempt countries. This electronic travel authorization can be obtained by completing an online application.
There are plans to introduce another visa waiver for visa-exempt countries in the near future, known as the electronic travel authorization (ETA). The UK ETA will be modeled on similar systems, such as the US ESTA, the Canadian eTA, and the Australian ETA.
The ETA for the UK will be an entry requirement for citizens of the European Union and Schengen Area when it is launched, following the country’s exit from the EU (Brexit).
See below further information about the UK’s rules and regulations regarding entry visas.