What is the UK Youth Mobility visa?

The UK Youth Mobility visa is a visa that allows young people aged 18-30 to live, study, and work in the UK for up to 24 months. They can even set up their own company (with rented premises, no employees, and no equipment above £5,000).

This visa has replaced the Tier 5 Youth Mobility visa.

UK Youth Mobility Scheme visa requirements

  • Applicants must be between 18 and 30 years old.
  • They must have no children under 18 years old financially supported by them.
  • They must not have been granted a Youth Mobility Scheme visa before.
  • They must have funds of at least £2,530 for a 28-day period.

Youth Mobility visa countries

The Youth Mobility Scheme visa is not open to everyone around the world. Applicants should be nationals of certain countries in order to be considered for the visa. 

The applicant can be a British Overseas Citizen, British Overseas Territories Citizen, or British National (Overseas) as defined by the British Nationality Act 1981, or he/she can be from:

  • San Marino
  • Monaco
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • New Zealand
  • Iceland

Twice a year, the UK Government opens ballots so that people from Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan can apply for the Youth Mobility Scheme visa.

The Youth Mobility Scheme visa ballots take place in January and July every year, and they are open for 48 hours. During these 48 hours, applicants from these countries can enter the ballot via email (the email must be in English). If they’re accepted, they can proceed to submit their application and pay the Youth Mobility Scheme visa fees. 

Indian citizens can apply for the Youth Mobility Scheme visa through a different ballot. 

Youth Mobility Scheme visa fees

 Youth Mobility Scheme visa fees include:

  • A visa application fee of £259.
  • The Immigration Healthcare Surcharge, which is usually £470 per year.

Plus, the applicant must have personal savings of at least £2,530 for 28 consecutive days to show that they can support themselves while they are in the UK.

Youth Mobility Scheme visa conditions

Successful applicants for the Youth Mobility Scheme visa are subject to the following conditions of leave:

  • No access to public funds.
  • No employment as a professional sportsperson (including as a sports coach).
  • No self-employment unless the applicant carries out a business from their home, with no employees and no equipment that’s worth more than £5,000 in total. 

Youth Mobility Scheme visa application system

If the applicant is from Britain, Iceland, San Marino, Monaco, Australia, Canada, or New Zealand, he or she must apply online and pay the visa application fee.

Applicants will be required to prove their identity. This can be done by:

  • Creating a UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) account and scanning identity documents with the UK Immigration: ID Check app.
  • Providing biometric information, such as fingerprints and photographs, at one of the approved visa application centres.

These visa application centres might retain the applicant’s documents and passport while they process the UK youth mobility scheme visa application. Some visa application centres can be far from the applicant’s current location, even in another country.

Young people from Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan must be pre-selected on the ballot for the Youth Mobility Scheme visa to be able to apply. 

Required documents to apply for UK Youth Mobility visa

Applicants for the Youth Mobility Scheme visa must prove their identity and nationality with a valid passport or other similar documents. Plus, they must prove that they have at least £2,530 in savings through a bank statement. And if they come from certain countries, they should also submit their tuberculosis test results. 

Applicants should leave a blank page in their passport for their visa.

Translation of documents

All documents must be in English or Welsh. Otherwise, they won’t be considered.

Applicants whose original documents are not in English or Welsh should submit a certified translation made by a verifiable translation agency or a professional translator. 

A certified translation is one that has a date on it and that the translation company or the professional translator confirms that it is accurate. Plus, it must include the contact details of the individual or firm that provided the translation.

Visa holder family

The Youth Mobility Scheme visa is meant for individuals who want to work and/or study in the UK on their own. The program doesn’t allow applicants to add dependants to their applications. 

Family members must apply separately if they meet the eligibility requirements.

How to extend this visa

As it happened with the previous t5 Youth Mobility visa, the current Youth Mobility Scheme visa can’t be extended.

How to switch to this visa

Applicants can’t switch to this visa from inside the UK. 

Receiving decision on UK Youth Mobility visa

After they’ve submitted their application, applicants usually receive a decision within 3 weeks. 

Sometimes, it may take more than that. Applicants should check the official visa decision waiting times to be informed about possible delays in the processing of applications for this and other visas.

Frequently asked questions about Youth Mobility visa

  1. When should I apply for the Youth Mobility Scheme visa?
  • You can apply up to 6 months before you travel to the UK.
  1. Can I travel outside the UK once I’m living there under the Youth Mobility Scheme visa?
  • Yes. You can enter the UK at any time while your visa is valid. This means that you can travel abroad and return to the UK and there will be no problem.
  1. What happens if I turn 31 while I’m in the UK under the Youth Mobility Scheme visa?
  • Nothing. You can stay in the UK until your visa expires.
  1. What happens if I’m 17 years old by the time I apply for the Youth Mobility Scheme visa?
  • You must turn 18 by the date your entry clearance to the UK becomes valid.
  1. What can I do if my application has been refused?
  • You can ask for an administrative review if you think that this decision is mistaken. 
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