Visas: Applications

(asked on 3rd November 2020) - View Source

Question to the Home Office:

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment she has made of the effect on the financial and mental well-being of visa applicants of extensive travel to (a) complete the English Language and Life in the UK tests and (b) submit a visa application in person.


Answered by
Kevin Foster Portrait
Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
This question was answered on 12th November 2020

UKVI work hard to ensure that front-end immigration services are accessible to customers.

UKVI works closely with commercial partners both oversees and in the UK, to ensure that there is a sufficient geographical spread of English language and Life in the UK (UK only) testing and biometric enrolment locations to minimise the amount of travel required by customers by analysing where concentrations of demand are. Our footprints in respect to both services are kept under review and further locations opened where sufficient demand supports.

In addition, our commercial partners offer a range of optional added-value services which provide customers additional choice in how they access biometric enrolment services overseas or in the UK such as mobile enrolment at a location at their convenience.

Individuals applying in the UK who have higher needs, may be vulnerable, or whose circumstances may be complex are directed to the Home Office run Support Centres (SSC) where they receive support with their application.

SSC customers who are unable to pay the application fee may submit a fee waiver request. Customers who have been granted a fee waiver and who fit certain criteria may be eligible to apply for travel assistance to attend their closest SSC.

Within the UK, customers who cannot travel to enrol biometrics due to ill heath are directed to contact either UKVI (if routed to SSCs) or Sopra Steria Limited (if routed to the UKVCAS service which they run on behalf of UKVI) once they have completed their application and before booking an appointment. Information on how to do this is provided at the end of the online application form on Gov.uk.

This content was generated for your convenience by Parallel Parliament and does not form part of the official record.
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