Depending on what country you are from, you may need a visa in order to enter the United Kingdom. While certain nationals (particularly Europeans) do not need a visa for stays under six months, citizens of other states will need to obtain one—regardless of how long they intend to remain in the country. Alternatively, a select group of nationalities can get an Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW) for the UK, provided they adhere to the visa waiver program requirements. The EVW has minimal application requirements relative to a traditional visa in terms of cost, mandatory documents, and processing time. Because the EVW is a more convenient way to enter the UK, travelers who are eligible for the waiver should pursue it rather than a traditional visa. Find out what nationalities can enter the UK without a visa and learn how to get an Electronic Visa Waiver to enter the UK.

What nationalities can enter the UK without visa?

  • Citizens of the United States, the European Union, and the following countries can enter the UK without a visa for a short period—half a year.
    • Andorra
    • Antigua and Barbuda
    • Argentina
    • Australia
    • Bahamas
    • Barbados
    • Belize
    • Botswana
    • Brazil
    • Brunei
    • Canada
    • Chile
    • Costa Rica
    • Dominica
    • East Timor
    • El Salvador
    • Grenada
    • Guatemala
    • Honduras
    • Hong Kong
    • Iceland
    • Israel
    • Japan
    • Kiribati
    • Liechtenstein
    • Macau
    • Malaysia
    • Maldives
    • Marshall Islands
    • Mauritius
    • Mexico
    • Micronesia
    • Monaco
    • Namibia
    • Nauru
    • New Zealand
    • Nicaragua
    • Norway
    • Palau
    • Panama
    • Papua New Guinea
    • Paraguay
    • Saint Kitts and Nevis
    • Saint Lucia
    • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
    • Samoa
    • San Marino
    • Seychelles
    • Singapore
    • Solomon Islands
    • South Korea
    • Switzerland
    • Taiwan
    • Tonga
    • Trinidad and Tobago
    • Tuvalu
    • United States of America
    • Uruguay
    • Vanuatu
    • Vatican City
  • Please note that while nationals of the above countries do not need a visa in order to enter the UK for most reasons if they only stay half a year, those who wish to remain in the country for greater than a six-month period usually have to apply for a traditional visa in order to remain legally in the country.

Which are the Visa Waiver countries for the UK?

  • If you are not from one of the above countries, you will usually need a traditional visa to enter the UK. However, if you are from one of the below states, which are the visa waiver countries for UK, you can apply for the EVW:
    • Kuwait 
    • Oman 
    • Qatar
    • United Arab Emirates 
  • If you are from one of these countries, you can get an electronic visa waiver to enter the UK instead of having to apply for a traditional visa. You can do this by following the steps outlined in the next paragraph.

How to get an electronic visa waiver to enter the UK

  • Follow these steps to get an Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW) for the UK:
    • Apply no earlier than three months before and no later than 48 hours prior to your trip.
    • Access the online application portal and enter your information.
    • Meet the passport requirements (see below).
    • Pay the EVW fee (£30 GBP).
    • Successful applicants should receive an email containing a link to their waiver around 24 hours after they have submitted their application.
    • Print out or retain a digital copy of your EVW so that you may present it when it is requested (so that you may enter the country).
    • When you are ready to begin the EWR application process, contact us here.
    • If you are approved for a EVW you will be able to remain in the country for half a year on your EVW.

Visa waiver program requirements

  • The requirements for the visa waiver program are as follows:
    • Valid passport.
    • Information about your trip, such as when you will leave for the UK, when you will arrive, and how long you intend to stay.
    • Location of where you will stay once you arrive in the country.
  • In addition, you will need to make certain that the information contained on your passport is identical to the passport information you enter online during your EWR application process.
  • Finally, please note that you must change your travel details on your EVW online in the event of the following:
    • Your travel time changes.
    • You land in Britain 8+ hours after you indicated that you would.
    • You land (or take off from) a destination other than that which you originally indicated on your application.
  • In order to change your travel details on your EVW, you will need your EVW number, which will be given to you when you receive your EWV.
  • The EWV requirements are the same for everyone, regardless of age. This means that if you are traveling with an infant or someone incapable of applying for their own EVW, you will need to apply for an EVW for him or her.
  • In the event that you do apply for an EVW for someone else, you will be asked to provide your email/phone number etc.

What can you do (and not do) with an EVW?

  • EVW holders can do the following with an EVW:
    • Enter the UK and remain there for six months.
    • Be a tourist.
    • Attend school.
    • Receive medical care.
    • Conduct certain business.
  • EVW holders are prohibited from doing the following:
    • Getting married in the country.
    • Being employed in the country.
    • Entering the country in the event that the biographical/travel document information on their passport differs from what they wrote down on the online application (these passport requirements are incredibly strict—if the information you entered online is off even slightly–if even a comma is out of place, then you will be denied entry to the UK.
    • Re-entering the country on the same EVW after leaving:
      • EVW holders who leave the UK and attempt to re-enter the country on their same EVW will not be allowed to do so—even if they have spent fewer than six months in the country.
      • EVW holders who wish to return to the UK after leaving it should therefore re-apply and receive a new waiver (and therefore a new EVW number).

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