Student Visas 

Entry into the UK with a Cayman Islands (BOTC) Passport

Entry to the UK is permitted for up to 6 months on a BOTC passport.

If a student is staying on a course longer than 6 months, they must obtain a TIER 4 STUDENT VISA.

The visa you apply for depends on your circumstances: 

Apply for a study visa (tier 4 general visa) if you’re coming to the UK to study a university or college course for more than 6 months, or more than 11 months if it’s an English language course.

You can apply for a Short-term Study visa if you’re 16 or over and taking a short course of study in the UK, such as an English language course or a training course, or undertaking a short period of research as part of a degree course if you are studying abroad, which is no more than 6 months, or no more than 11 months for an English language.

You can apply for the Tier 4 (Child) student visa if you’re aged between 4 and 17 and you want to study at an independent school in the UK gov.uk/child-study-visa

UK Biometric Residence Permit

You’ll get a biometric residence permit (BRP) if you:

  • apply to come to the UK for longer than 6 months
  • extend your visa to longer than 6 months
  • apply to settle in the UK
  • transfer your visa to a new passport
  • apply for certain Home Office travel documents

You don’t have to apply separately for a BRP. You’ll get one automatically if your visa or immigration application is approved, or you’re replacing an older document.
Why you need a BRP
You can use your BRP to confirm your:

Tier 4 General Visa

You can apply for a Tier 4 (General) student visa to study in the UK if you’re 16 or over and you:

have been offered a place on a course
have enough money to support yourself and pay for your course – the amount will vary depending on your circumstances
are from a country that’s not in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland
meet the other eligibility requirements

 

EU countries
The EU countries are:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.

The European Economic Area (EEA)
The EEA includes EU countries and also Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. It allows them to be part of the EU’s single market.

Switzerland is neither an EU nor EEA member but is part of the single market – this means Swiss nationals have the same rights to live and work in the UK as other EEA nationals.

When to apply

The earliest you can apply for a visa is 3 months before you start your course.

You’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks. You can check visa processing times for your country.

Fees

It costs £348 to apply for this visa from outside the UK.

You must pay £348 per person for any dependants.

Healthcare surcharge

You’ll also have to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application. Check how much you’ll have to pay before you apply.

 

Overview

You might need to pay a healthcare surcharge (called the ‘immigration health surcharge’ or IHS) as part of your immigration application.

Whether you need to pay depends on the immigration status you’re applying for.

When you must pay

If you’re making your immigration application online, you pay the surcharge as part of your application or when you book an appointment. 

If you’re applying by post, you pay the surcharge online before you send your application. You’ll need to include the IHS reference number on your application form.

 

When you can start to use the NHS

You can start using the National Health Service (NHS) when both: 

you’ve paid the healthcare surcharge (or are exempt from paying it)
your visa or immigration application is granted

You’ll still need to pay for certain types of services, such as prescriptions, dental treatment, eye tests and assisted conception.

You should bring your biometric residence permit with you when you access healthcare in the UK.

How long you can stay

You can arrive in the UK before your course starts:

up to 1 week before, if your course lasts 6 months or less
up to 1 month before, if your course lasts more than 6 months

How long you can stay depends on the kind of course you’re doing and what study you’ve already completed.

 

What you can and cannot do

You can:
study
work as a student union sabbatical officer
apply from inside or outside the UK
apply to extend your stay
work in most jobs – depending on what level your course is and what kind of sponsor you have

You cannot:
get public funds
work in certain jobs, for example professional sportsperson or sports coach
study at an academy or a local authority-funded school (also known as a maintained school)

You may be able to bring in family members (dependants).

Read the full guidance to find out how long you might be able to stay and what you can and cannot do.

Short Term Study Visa

www.gov.uk/study-visit-visa

You can apply for a Short-term Study visa – gov.uk/study-visit-visa if you’re 16 or over and taking a short course of study in the UK, such as an English language course or a training course, or undertaking a short period of research as part of a degree course if you are studying abroad, which is no more than 6 months, or no more than 11 months for an English language.

Overview

You can apply for a Short-term study visa if:

you’re doing a short course of study in the UK
you’re from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland
you meet the other eligibility requirements

What you can and cannot do

You can:

do a short course of study in the UK, such as an English language course or a training course
do a short period of research as part of a degree course if you are studying abroad

You cannot:

study at a state-funded school
work or carry out any business (this includes work experience or work placements, unless the placement is an eligible medical, veterinary or dentistry elective)extend this visa
bring family members (‘dependants’) with you – they must apply separately
get public funds

How long you can stay

You can stay in the UK for:

You can stay in the UK for the length of your course or research.

You may be allowed to stay an extra 30 days if your total stay in the UK would be no more than 6 months, or no more than 11 months if you’re both:

16 or over
studying an English language course

Your visa will say how long you are allowed to stay in the UK.

If you do not normally need a visa to visit the UK, you can study for up to 6 months without applying in advance. You must see a border officer when you arrive in the UK – do not use the ePassport gates.

If you want to study for longer than 6 months, you must apply for a Short-term study visain advance.

Fees

It costs:

£97 for a 6 month visa
£186 for an 11 month visa

How long it takes

You can apply for a visa up to 3 months before your date of travel to the UK.

You should get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks when you apply from outside the UK.

Child Student Visa (Tier 4)

You can apply for the Tier 4 (Child) student visa if you’re aged between 4 and 17 and you want to study at an independent school in the UK gov.uk/child-study-visa

Overview

You’re aged between 4 and 17 and you want to study at an independent school in the UK.

You must also:

have a place on a course
have the consent of your parent or guardian
have enough money to cover your course fees and living costs
be from a country that’s not in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland

How long it will take

The earliest you can apply for a visa is 3 months before you start your course.

You’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks. Find out about paying for a faster decision.

Fees

It costs £348 to apply for a Tier 4 (Child) student visa from outside the UK.

You’ll also have to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application. Check how much you’ll have to pay before you apply.

How long you can stay

Your age and the length of your course of study will affect how long you can stay.

Age when you apply

How long you can stay

Under 16

Course length (up to 6 years) plus 4 months afterwards

16 or 17

Course length (up to 3 years) plus 4 months afterwards

You can arrive in the UK:

up to 1 week before your course starts if your course lasts 6 months or less
up to 1 month before your course starts if your course lasts more than 6 months

What you can and cannot do

You can:

study at an independent school
apply from outside the UK

You can also work, if you’re 16 or over:

part-time during term for up to 10 hours per week
full-time during vacations
on a work placement as part of your course (but not for more than 50% of your course time)
as a student union sabbatical officer for up to 2 years

You cannot:

study at an academy or a local authority-funded school (also known as a maintained school) or further education college
get public funds
take a full-time permanent job or be self-employed
work as a doctor or dentist in training
work as a professional sportsperson (for example a sports coach) or entertainer
settle in the UK on this visa
bring in family members (‘dependants’) – if your parents want to accompany you, they’ll need to apply for a Parent of a Tier 4 (Child) visa
Home Fees (University)

The visa requirement does not have any bearing on your eligibility for Home Student Status and fees.  

CAYMAN ISLANDS STUDENTS are entitled to HOME STUDENT STATUS FEES as long as the student is a BOTC and has been resident in Cayman for the preceding three years.

 

How to renew your BOTC Passport from the UK

Please see information at our BOTC PASSPORT APPLICATIONS FROM THE UK page

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