UK Visa: How to apply for a UK Marriage Visa

And so, after you have met each other and been together for a while, both of you reckon to settle down and decided to live together in good faith with a blessing of the holy matrimony. You both decided to take your relationship to the next level and together looking forward to your happy future. Now, you’ve been thinking how to get a Fiancee visa so you can be with the one you love and start living a life together. This article is for all Filipino Citizen who wish to join with their partner in the UK. I made this article to share my knowledge based on my own personal experience hoping that this may find helpful of pursuing your intention to get married to the person you choose to be with for the rest of your life. It’s either you may find this whole process easy or for most, quite challenging.

Having been said, the beginning is always been difficult thinking where you should start and honestly, we’re talking about time, effort and financial expenses to support this future application. Thinking about it at first might already give you a headache. If you have not tried processing a UK Tourist Visa yet, my previous post might give you some good insights on what are the things you will need to prepare. Please feel free to visit my post; UK Visa: Apply for a UK Tourist Visa in the Phils. unless you prefer to hire an agent to process your application on your behalf. In my case, I chose to do it myself to gain knowledge of how things are working around with my application apart from saving the cost of the fees for hiring an agent. Well, just a little bit practical though. If others can do, why can’t I innit? Yet, as always the choice is yours whether you’ll hire an agent or do the “DIY”(Do It Yourself).

However, if you have already traveled to the UK under tourist or Standard Visitor Visa, that’s pretty cool. What you will need is just a little furnish and bits of add-ons to your existing documents. Yet though, I would like to remind that having been to the UK for a vacation doesn’t guarantee you will get the next UK Fiancee visa also known as Marriage Visitor Visa. The decision is still subject to approval based on the application submitted to the UK embassy. Spending time perusing the documents for your application is pretty needed in order to save time, effort and most of all—the pain of frustration. Alright, so where do you have to start then? Well, this three websites will help you with your application getting on the right track. I will also dash some additional tips for the further notion.

UK Visa Application Guide

Marriage Visitor Visa

VFS Global Service

If you will be granted a marriage visitor visa, you can stay for up to six (6) months in the UK. If you wish to extend your stay then, you may apply to extend your visa prior the expiration of your current visa, after your marriage. I have also posted an article on how to apply to remain in the UK. Do feel free to visit my blog. Please be guided that certain rules apply accompanied for marriage visitor visa. You can get married or enter into a civil partnership within six (6) months from your arrival in the UK in any licensed location for this intention.

Restrictions:

  • You should not get any public funds
  • You cannot do any paid or unpaid work
  • Study should not be your main reason for your visit
  • Overstay or live in the UK for an extended period of time through frequent visits
  • Extending your visa or switching it to another visa
  • Inviting or bringing family members

UK Marriage Visa—Things you need to Know:

  • Type of Visa
  • The Fees
  • Eligibility
  • Relationship Requirements
  • Financial Requirements
  • Tuberculosis Test
  • Secure English Language Test  (IELTS)
  • Visa Processing Time
  • When you can process your application
  • How to Apply and Where to submit the application
  • Documents you need to provide
  • CFO (Commission on Filipinos Overseas)

Type of Visa:

My partner and I chose the “Apply to join family living permanently in the UK” as this will allow us to extend my visa. If you plan to tie the knot and either stay or leave the UK after, what you will need is either apply to join your partner who is living permanently in the UK or the Marriage Visitor Visa. However,  you can only use the marriage visitor visa to visit the UK for up to 6 months. You may visit the UK government website for visas and immigration in the Philippines to ensure you know the type of visa you will need.

The Fees:

  • The cost to apply for a Marriage Visitor visa is £87. For visa fee, click here.
  • The cost for the visa application fee is £111. For further information, please click here.
  • The fee to join your partner is £1,195. Please visit the link for further information.

Eligibility:

Regardless if you stay or not in the UK after your marriage, still you will need the said visa and should meet the eligibility requirements for the said application.

  • Both the partner and the applicant must be of the right age, 18 or over
  • Your partner must be a British citizen who is present and settled in the UK or with refugee leave or with humanitarian protection
  • Must be in a genuine relationship
  • Has an adequate accommodation to live in the UK
  • You must not do any paid or unpaid work
  • Must not travel or cross to a country outside the UK
  • Either you, your family or your partner should have sufficient funds to cover the costs of your visit without seeking public funds.

Relationship Requirements:

  • Both the partner and the applicant must be of the right age 18 or over for you to be eligible for this application.
  • Your partner must be a British citizen who is present and settled in the UK or with refugee leave or with humanitarian protection
  • Both the partner/fiancee and the applicant must have met in person
  • You must prove that you both plan to marry within six (6) months of arriving in the UK

Furthermore, you must be in a genuine relationship and you intend to both continue to live together with your partner in the UK after you apply. You will also have to give a notice of marriage within six (6) months of your arrival. I did mine a month after I arrived in the UK to the civil registrar and the preparation was really challenging but fun. I get a full support from my mother-in-law. She helped me and my husband sorting out things from my wedding dress to my flowers and the food preparation. Kudos to my mother-in-law, sending her my hug and kisses. Either you, your family or your partner should have sufficient funds to cover the costs of your visit without seeking public funds. You are also not allowed to cross country outside the UK. For further information regarding eligibility, please click this link.

Financial Requirements:

The requirements needed for this section must be provided appropriately in order to support your application. Otherwise, it may cause a delay or refusal of your application. If you are applying only for yourself, your partner in the UK which is your sponsor must meet the financial requirement of at least £18,600 gross annual income or per year. Furthermore, a proof of savings account and source of income of the applicant’s partner.

Tuberculosis Test:

If you are coming to the UK and stay for more than six (6) months, you will need to have a Tuberculosis (TB) Test. Same goes for Filipinos who wish to have a UK Marriage Visitor Visa. I flew to Manila and had my TB Test at IOM (International Organisation for Migration Health Centre ). It was a one-day process so you will get your result on the same day. It won’t take that long though. I got my result probably after two hours or so. Please check my blog on how to get a TB TEST. For applicants who are exempted from the said test, please click here for more info.

English Language Test:

Filipinos who want to process a Marriage Visitor Visa also requires an English Language Test. I did my test for IELTS Life Skills Level A1 for speaking and listening test. I took my test in IDP at Keppel Building near Ayala Mall in Cebu. However, there were loads of test center that you can choose to book but make sure that it is a UKVI approved IELTS test center. IDP Education Pty Ltd is a UKVI approved test center which they offer assistance for IELTS for UK visa applications. In addition, it has been strongly advised that you check carefully if what type of test is required for your application. For more information, please visit this site Guidance on applying for a UK visa: approved English language tests.  If you wish to register for a test at IDP test center, you may visit their site.

Visa Processing Time:

The decision on your visa should be made available within 2 weeks. However, you may visit this site for more information regarding visa processing times as per country.

When to Process your Application:

It is best to process your application three (3) months before you travel.

How to apply and where to submit the Application:

How: If you are applying outside the UK, you must apply online and fill up the application form for UK Marriage Visitor visa. You need to sign in or create an account if you do not have an account yet. To create an account or sign in, please click here. This will give you access to the Visa4UK system and online application form. This will enable you to view, edit, save and go back to your application form and finish it later.

  • Fill in the application form in English
  • Pay the visa fee online and have it printed out
  • Print out your filled-up online form
  • Book an Appointment in Manila or Cebu
  • Attend the Appointment (you must bring the original and photocopy of your supporting documents)

Where: You will need to book an appointment at the visa application centre prior to submission. Please be guided that they don’t accommodate walk-in applicants. To attend the appointment, locate the visa application center here. VFS is very particular with time. I would suggest that you should be there in the office 15 minutes before the said time. The important things you need to bring when you attend your appointment are the following:

  • Two valid ID (To enter the Keppel Building, you need to surrender 1 valid ID to the guard on the ground floor)
  • The second ID will be needed when you deposit your belonging/s to the guard at the VFS premises
  • Your appointment letter and printed application form
  • Your latest passport photo size
  • Your Documents (Original and photocopies)
  • Your passport

(Please click on the next page to know more about the documents you need to provide)

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