A Complete UK Transit Visa Guide 2024

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UK Transit Visa

Individuals travelling through the UK require a UK transit Visa. This visa allows the person to pass through the UK during transit. But there are certain conditions in which a UK transit Visa is not required such as they must have an EU Settlement Scheme family permit, have a Home Office travel document, for example, if the candidate is a refugee or stateless person, have a Standard Visitor visa, have a Marriage Visitor visa. Check the below article for more information about UK transit visas such as the application process, documents required, types, and processing time.

Also Read: Types of UK Visa for India Students

What is a UK Transit Visa?

The UK transit visa is a type of visa that allows an individual to pass through the UK during transit. Usually, there are two types of UK transit visa: a Direct Airside Transit Visa (DATV) which permits one to stay in the UK for 24 hours means in ‘airside’ (not allowed to pass through immigration) – and a Visitor in Transit Visa – which allows to stay for 48 hours and also allows to change terminals or airports.

Types of Transit Visas

Check the types of transit visas given below:

  • Direct Airside Transit Visa (DATV) – A  Direct Airside Transit visa lasts for up to 24 hours, that is the onward flight must be within 24 hours of the arrival in the UK. This visa does not allow to go through UK border control.
  • Visitor in Transit visa – This is the visa valid when an individual changes flights while traveling to the UK.
  • Long-term Visit visa – This visa actually lasts for up to 2, 5, or 10 years but an individual can stay for a maximum period of 6 months at once.

Also Read: A Comprehensive Guide – UK Visas and Immigration Process

How to Apply for a UK Transit Visa?

Candidates are required to apply for this visa online, through the official visa website of the UK government. They are also required to submit the required documents and biometrics to the respective visa application centre in the country. Check the step-by-step application process given as follows:

  • In order to confirm admission the candidates must provide proof of the following:
    • You are entering the UK for permissible activities
    • You will leave the country at the end of your visit
    • You have sufficient funds to support yourself
    • You have enough to pay for yourself, e.g., your tickets and other costs
  • Apply for the UK transit visa online: Candidates are required to complete the online application form through the visa and immigration website of the UK government.
  • Upload the required documents: Certain documents are required to be uploaded on the application portal. The exact list of documents for the type of visa and destination will be listed on the application form.
  • Payment of the visa application fees: After completing the application form, you are required to pay the application fees online.
  • The candidates must attend the visa appointment in person, as the biometric data, both fingerprints and photographs will be taken at the centre itself.

Processing Time for UK Transit Visa

Officially the processing time for visa is three weeks. However, if there are a larger number of applications, the processing time can be longer such as six weeks or even more. Therefore it is suggested to apply well in advance of the upcoming trip.

Documents Required

Check below the documents required for different types of UK transit visas:

  • Direct Airside Transit Visa (DATV)
    • A Valid passport or a travel document
    • Proof that you are allowed to enter the country such as:
    • Proof of travel such as a, printed tickets, flight booking email, or confirmation from a travel agency.
    • Nonresident applicants must:
      • Provide proof of reason of traveling there
      • Provide details about the place of stay
  • Visitor in Transit visa
    • A Current passport or a valid travel document,
    • Proof that you are allowed to enter the country such as:
      • Residence permit
      • Green card
      • Valid visa
    • Proof of travel, within 48 hours of arriving in the UK. For example, printed tickets, a flight booking email, or confirmation from a travel agent.
    • Nonresidents must:
      • Be able to explain the reason of travel
      • Provide details of about the place of stay
  • Long-term Visit visa
    • Proof of a valid reason to transit through the UK frequently.
    • Proof that the reason for transit through the UK will not change while staying in the UK.
    • Proof that the only purpose to visit the UK is transit.
    • Proof that you will leave the UK within 48 hours

Who Needs a UK Transit Visa?

Check below all the nationals of the countries and territories that need visas to enter or transit through the UK:

  • Afghanistan
  • Albania
  • Algeria
  • Angola
  • Bangladesh
  • Belarus
  • Burundi
  • Cameroon
  • China
  • Congo
  • Congo Dem. Republic
  • Cyprus
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Eritrea
  • Eswatini (Swaziland)
  • Ethiopia
  • Gambia
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • India
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Ivory Coast
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Kosovo
  • Lebanon
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Libya
  • Malawi
  • Moldova
  • Mongolia
  • Myanmar (Burma)
  • Nepal
  • Nigeria
  • North Macedonia
  • Pakistan
  • Palestinian Territories
  • Rwanda
  • Senegal
  • Serbia
  • Sierra Leone
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • South Sudan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Sudan
  • Syria
  • Tanzania
  • Turkey
  • Uganda
  • Venezuela (non-biometric)
  • Vietnam
  • Yemen
  • Zimbabwe

Also Read: Student Visa: Cost, Requirements, Application Process

Check below all the nationals of the countries and territories that need visas to enter or transit the UK landside:

  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bahrain
  • Benin
  • Bhutan
  • Bolivia
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cambodia
  • Cape Verde
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • Colombia
  • Comoros
  • Cuba
  • Djibouti
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Fiji
  • Gabon
  • Georgia
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Indonesia
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Korea (Dem. People’s Republic)
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Laos
  • Madagascar
  • Mali
  • Mauritania
  • Montenegro
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Oman
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Qatar
  • Russia
  • Sao Tome e Principe
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Surinam
  • Taiwan
  • Tajikistan
  • Thailand
  • Togo
  • Tunisia
  • Turkmenistan
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Uzbekistan
  • Venezuela (biometric)
  • Zambia


Is a UK Transit Visa required for connecting flights?

Individuals require a UK Transit visa in case of changing flights in the UK on their way to another country, going through UK border control, for example, to check in their luggage for a connecting flight and leave the UK within 48 hours.

Are Indians required to have a transit visa for connecting flights in the UK?

Yes, Indians are required to have transit visas for connecting flights in the UK.

How long does it take for approval of a UK transit visa?

The processing time for approval of a UK transit visa depends upon the country of application and also the visa application center however, it usually takes 3 weeks to get it approved.

We hope you now understand what is UK transit visa is, its requirements, the application process, etc. Want to apply for a Visa for your study abroad journey? Drop us a comment in the section below, or you can connect with a visa expert at Leverage Edu, and we will guide you on your dream journey!

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A Practical Guide to USA Work PermitsHow to Get PR in Ireland After Study?
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