Do you need a Visa to go to London?

How to get a tourist visa to London, England:

  • Many tourist receive a tourist visa on arrival in England, UK. i.e. the visa is obtained on arrival at the airport, before collecting their luggage.
  • For example, Brazilians do not need to get a tourist visa before leaving Brazil to visit the United Kingdom. i.e. it is not necessary to obtain the pre-visa before travelling.
  • Upon arriving at the airport all foreigners are subjected to pass through immigration where the tourist visa can be approved or rejected.
  • The tourist is interviewed by the immigration officer to evaluate it and decide whether to approve the visa or not. During the interview the officer will ask questions to find out what the passenger intends to do in the country, with the risk of having rejected because it does not fit with the pattern of tourist.
  • This review is totally based on the decision of the immigration officer who will judge if your story is true (or valid) to grant a tourist visa.
  • If you enter the UK as a tourist you can not change your tourist visa to a student visa. You will have to return to your country to apply for a student visa.
  • A tourist visa does not give permission to work in England and the United Kingdom.

Time of validity of tourist visa

  • The tourist visa is valid for up to six months maximum.
  • If you enter the UK as a tourist and stay for six continuous months, to leave the country after six months you can not return to the UK before a period of twelve months.
  • If you stay for less than six months may return before one year.
  • It is worth mentioning that when leaving the UK immigration does not stamp the passport. So the person cannot prove how long he was in the country. It is a good idea to save your flight ticket as proof of departure to prove you did not already use your six months quota .
  • Tourists must pass through immigration every time they re-enter the UK because the tourist visa expires when you leave the country. You cannot therefore use London as a base to explore the rest of Europe.
  • It is also important to know about “the spent leave rule” rule which means that immigration has the right to prevent the entry of people returning to the country before the period of twelve months.
  • To stay in England as a tourist for more than six months is necessary to make an application for extension of visa for tourist with the British Consulate in Brazil before your trip.

Documents of evidence for tourists and students:

Stand with your documents of evidence prepared to enter England. Do not you worry, but come prepared! London welcomes tourists and most people enter Britain without problem.

Fact: According to the Immigration Department, 19,300 Brazilians entered the UK as student visitors in 2011. Since Brazil is the second largest country with students coming to the United Kingdom, the first is the United States.

Bring in your hand luggage the following documents to assist their entry:

  • Passport over 6 months validity
  • Return ticket to your country
  • Invitation letter
  • Proof of accommodation
  • Proof of income
  • Proof of ties with your country (family, work, college etc.)

Do not put your documents in checked luggage, because you only have access to them after they pass through immigration!

Tips to Pass Immigration in England

UK Landing Card

Example of a Disembarkation / landing card

Usually the interview is quick and easy, only to establish whether the person is actually coming to England as a tourist or student legitimate. The vast majority of Brazilian students and tourists travelling to the UK go through immigration without any problems.

Questions Immigration Officer:

The immigration officer may ask about the time of your trip, where you will stay, how long you will remain in England, why you are visiting etc. These questions are common, but may or may not occur.

Purpose of your trip:

  • During the interview you may have to explain the reason for your visit, for example tourism, study, visiting relatives and friends.

Duration of your trip:

  • Usually once you get to immigration the visitor or student may need to confirm how long they want to stay in England, so you may need to show the ticket back to your country to prove the date of your return.


  • Evidence of your stay is desirable to facilitate the visa approval, both student as a tourist, as a student residence, home stay, hotel, guest house etc.

Evidence of money (financial funds):

  • The officer may also ask if the visitor or student is to remain in England for their own. So if you are staying for a long time is good to bring your international travel cheques or bank card.
  • Thus it is worth bringing a small bank statement or paycheck if you need to prove you have money to themselves during their stay in England. On average it is good that the visitor has around 75 U.S. dollars for each day that will remain in England.
  • If you are travelling to England you do not need to bring much cash with you, around 100 pounds / euros / dollars is good enough. You do not want to run the risk of losing your money. Nowadays it is better to travel with bank card (check with your bank if your card is international) or check travel (travellers checks).
  • If you are receiving money from your home country during your stay to pay for an English course you may need to demonstrate how to get the money, for example you can get a money order at your national bank in The City.
  • If you’re a student it is important to show evidence that your course is paid for and also that you have to support yourself during your stay.
  • Students can work maximum 20 hours per week, but it is preferable that it can maintain without the need to work. It is also important to check if your school is recognized by the British consulate or associations of schools in the English language, to ensure it is a legitimate school English.

Evidence of ties with your home country:

  • Documents proving that you will return your your country are a good idea. For example, proof of employment, studies, home ownership, children or other dependants.
  • Another question that may occur during the interview is about your usual occupation. For example, studying or working and is coming during your holiday etc..

Invitation letter:

  • If a tourist or student has family or friends in England, you may submit a letter from the person who legally lives in England either as a citizen or a resident of the UK, a person with any other student visa invitation can also write a letter of invitation, but a person with a tourist visa does not qualify to write the invitation letter.
  • Your family or friend can send an invitation letter, inviting him to visit them in England, but it is important to specify the date of his return home, the intention to visit and your activity at home, not to think that you intend to stay in the UK.
  • The officer may want to contact your reference in the UK to give your details. You must also have the contact phone in your hand luggage. The invitation letter should also include the contact phone number of your reference.

Thorough checks:

  • During the interview the immigration officer will check your passport, in some cases, the agent may ask to check your ticket, luggage, laptop, letters and documents that are at your disposal (personal letters and documents can sometimes be translated ). This type of inquiry is less common and can be done.

Final decision: stay calm!

  • The final decision to grant the visa depends exclusively on the official conducting the interview. The best way to facilitate their admission in England as a tourist or student is to stay calm during the interview and avoid contradictions and hesitations that even genuine may raise suspicion that something is wrong, sometimes causing the rejection of the visa. The important thing is that you are natural.
  • In general, the immigration agent is interested in knowing if you will return back to your country at the end of your trip (your return date should coincide with the date of your return ticket!), bonds that keep you in your country (work, study dependent), if you have accommodation in England and if you have how to stay during your stay (eg credit card or international debit).
  • Relax and be yourself, answer the questions according to how they are made. i.e. you do not need to talk more than necessary! Stay positive and good luck!

How to Make the Student Visa for England

  • There are three types of visas for students:
  1. Tier 4 student per point
  2. Student Visitor 6 messes up
  3. Visiting students up to 11 months 

To qualify for the student visa, you must be enrolled in a course for full-time or 15 hours per week during the day (morning or afternoon but not at night).

Student visitor visa:

  • The student visitor visa is valid between 6 to 11 months, depending on the course.
  • Only English students can get up to 11 months.
  • The student visitor visa valid for up to 6 months is obtained after arriving in England, the land at the airport.
  • The student visitor can stay in the UK for up to 6 months without the need to obtain the CAS nor the pre-visa (entry clearance or points system) before leaving. This visa does not allow the student to work in the UK.
  • Student visitors who want to stay for more than 6 months and maximum 11 months must obtain pre-visa (entry clearance) before leaving their country. Nor does it work.
  • Visiting students who possess the entry clearance may leave and re-enter the UK with the same visa.
  • Visitors without entry clearance must pass through immigration every time re-entering the UK because the visa expires to leave the country.

Student Visa for points (tier 4 / ue renq 4)

  • This visa requires the CAS and entry clearance before leaving your country to stay for more than six months and also able to work shifts..
  • From April 21, 2011, to enter England as a student for points (tier 4 / tier 4) for more than six months is necessary to receive the CAS through school, before getting the pre-visa called (entry clearance) by British Consulate in your country before your trip.
  • Even if the person has a pre-visa obtained in advance in your country late entry visa is obtained with the immigration officer at the airport to go through the interview on arrival in the UK.
  • To obtain a student visa you need to show documents of evidence of course, just like a letter from the school confirming the course.
  • The visa application can be done online through the site Visa4UK. You will need to present a letter from the school confirming the payment of the course for more than six months and also the letter of confirmation of accommodation in the UK, since the student will be asked to address stay in London.

Duration of the student visa tier 4

  • The duration of the student visa varies according to the study period.

Work permit for students tier 4 

  • College students (NQF6) by points (tier 4/4 tier) can work in the UK legally for part-time or during the holidays, for a maximum of 20 hours per week.
  • College can work more hours if the work is part of a university study and is approved by the educational institution.
  • Other students can work for 10 hours per week.

The most common types of visa are tourist and student visas.

How to Get the Family Visa for England and the UK

  • Seen EEA Residence Permit – Family of European citizens:

Given indefinite leave to remain UKIf you have European nationality your family can apply for a visa family called “EEA Family Permit” to enter the UK. This visa can be obtained for free. The visa must be obtained before leaving your country. The parent of European citizens must be travelling together with the EU citizen or can travel alone to meet the European citizen who is resident in the UK. If European citizens are not in the UK, the relative can not travel with this visa. To order this visa is necessary to prove the relationship of kinship to the European citizen.

Supporting documents include: copies the European passport endorsed by the European embassy, ​​proof of their relationship including marriage or birth certificate, letter from the European citizen stating that the parent is travelling with him (a) or to meet with him (a) UK.

If the parent is not spouse, child (a) or grandchild (a) under 21, must then prove that it is dependent on the EU citizen or who were part of the same residence.Proof that the EU citizen has to sustain the non-European relatives during their stay in the UK. Under 18 must have guardian’s permission to travel.

The form APPLICATION family is seen to VAF5 . During the application the applicant shall take fingerprints and biometric photo.

  • Views of Addiction – Family of European resident or EU citizen:

This visa is similar to that seen above. Being given to family members who are dependent on a person established in the UK as a resident or citizen. To be eligible for this visa you must have the following relationship with the EU citizen / resident:

Mother or grandmother, a widow aged 65 years or more.

Father or grandfather, a widower aged 65 years or more.

Parents or grandparents travelling together with at least one of the two aged 65 years or more.

Son, daughter, brother, sister, uncle or aunt with over 18 who live alone in exceptional circumstances, being dependent on the EU citizen or resident.

Highly qualified dependent relatives of immigrants can also get visa dependency.

  • Marriage visa:

To get the marriage visa both spouses must be at least 18 years. The visa entry clearance must be obtained before leaving your country. If the request is seen after entering the UK, it requires an initial visa for more than six months. The visa is valid for a period of 2 years. After this period the person may require residence. To be eligible spouses must legally marry, should have plans to move in together, they must have met before, have the capacity to sustain and also have accommodation in the UK. The dependants of a couple, under 18 also receive the right to enter the UK as a dependent. 

  • Visa Fiancé (e):

Can be issued for Grooms (as) from residents or British citizens who intend to marry in the UK. The fiancée visa is valid for six months after marriage the spouse can apply for permission to remain in the UK for two years after then can apply to stay indefinitely. The bride and groom must be at least 18 years. To get the fiancée visa the couple must intend to marry in 6 months, should have known earlier, should have plans that they live together, must have housing and ability to support themselves and sustain dependants. It is not necessary to prove the duration of the relationship. During the 6 month fiancée visa, work permit is not.

  • Fact visa (unmarried):

This visa allows a UK resident British citizen or person, bring your partner to live in the UK. This visa allows you to work and does not require marriage, initially valid for 2 years. Our citizens must be at least 18 years and the partner (a) at least 16 years. You need to prove that the couple are together for at least two years, have intention to live together and can support themselves independently.

  • Parents of children in the UK:

If you are a parent of a child under 18 who is a resident or citizen of the UK and more in the UK, you might require a visa to enter the UK. You must prove you are entitled to access to the child or is his guardian (ã).

For applications made outside the UK: we need to get the entry clearance as a parent, can stand on its own, speak English to the level required, having over 18 years.

For applications made in the UK: you can not be visitor (tourist), should be allowed to stay for more than 6 months, can sustain itself independently and have accommodation, speak minimal English required. If you do not qualify, you can apply for a visa based on extraordinary circumstances of family life.

  • Families of students and immigrants to work:

Partners and children under 18 years by immigrants system of points may require the dependent visa to stay together in the UK. See here form VAF10 . For dependants of immigrants in other categories (out of the system by points) is the form used VAF2. To qualify for this visa you must prove that you have accommodation and can support the family. The application process also includes registration fingerprint and biometric information.

Visas Tier 1, 2 and 5 to London, England, United Kingdom

Working in the UK

The application of pre-visa if you are studying in the UK and want to work during this period, make ‘Entry Clearance’ to travel as a student.

Tourist can not legally work in the UK and if caught working deported immediately.

For the a work visa must have a job offer and visa guaranteed by the employer.

The job options for students vary according to the level of English. The most common jobs are cleaning, baby sitting, distribution of magazines, shops, cafes, bars and restaurants. One way to get jobs is to personally go on the property to provide their service and complete a job. Several establishments disclose jobs in the windows. There are also several magazines, like TNT, and newspapers distributed for free at subway stations in London on job advertisements.

See this link UK Border Agency if you need a visa for the UK.The site is in English and you need to answer 3 questions:

1. Purpose of Travel

2. Nationality of passport

3. Where do you live at the moment

To confirm whether you need a visa and the necessary documents for the visa requirement you can enter the You can apply your visa to the UK online before you leave the site by Brazil Visa4UK .

For latest information see the website of Immigration UK

Note: The site Go2London disclaims any liability for damages of any nature that may arise to the individual or organization acting or refraining from acting as a result of any information contained on Go2London. This article is based on information currently available, but should not be treated as a single substitute for advice on individual immigration cases. For more information, please visit

  2 comments for “Do you need a Visa to go to London?

    May 17, 2019 at 6:46 am

    As a tourist who will only stay for a week in London, what is the best answer when ask by the immigration officer “What is the purpose of your stay in London”?

    • May 17, 2019 at 8:05 am

      Just say you’re on holiday for a week. They might ask to see return tickets.

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