Nigerian students traveling to the UK for academic pursuits is not news anymore, and the numbers keep increasing every academic session. Whether it’s to boost employability, or simply to get a more prestigious education, there are several reasons so many Nigerian students are digging a UK education these days. From the upper class to the lower class, everyone is welcome to nurse this dream especially since there is a plethora of scholarships available now. Nonetheless, we all know that studying in the UK is only as achievable as the success of your application for your student visa, so in this article, we will be showing you how to successfully apply for and process your Tier 4 visa from Nigeria.
The UK student visa system is quite different from the US student visa system in many ways. A major difference is that here, the Tier 4 visa (the UK student visa) is the general visa to be applied for by any individual that’s at least 16 years, or above who has already been offered admission into an institution in the UK, and who possesses other qualities such as: proficiency in the English language, and a healthy financial backing to support him/her throughout the duration of his/her academic study in the UK.
Most people get denied a visa because they don’t start on time. And if you don’t want to be in that category of people, then let us let you know that the best time to apply for a UK student visa is, at least, three months before your proposed academic programme is to commence. Any later, and you’d most likely be denied a visa due to late application.
Now, when your visa is finally approved, you have up to one week to arrive the UK if your course lasts six months. If your course lasts more than six months though, then you have up to one month to arrive after your visa has been approved. Please bear in mind that this Tier 4 visa allows you to study, work (as long as its non-professional), apply for an extension of stay, or even bring a dependent along if possible. However, you cannot access public funds or study at any publicly funded school.
Here are the documents you require to travel as a student to the United Kingdom:
The process is handled by the Teleperformance Contact (TLS), a commercial company that works with the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) office in the processing and issuing of visas. To begin applying, click on this link. You’ll be able to fill the application form, pay the fees required, and book your visa appointment there.
When you finish filling the online form, you’ll get a unique GWF reference number, a confirmation email stating your appointment date and location, and some supporting documents. Please ensure that you keep that unique GWF reference safe as you’ll be needing it throughout the visa application process.
Now after this, you should register your details on the TLS site in order to guard against any unnecessary delay of any kind. This also helps to keep track of your visa application, as well as make payments for value added services.
When going for your visa appointment, be sure you go along with a printed copy of your online application form, your appointment confirmation, passport, and all necessary supporting documents. Now after you’ve paid your visa application fees, your digital biometrics will have to be presented at the application centre. Once this process is done, your fees automatically become non-refundable. After your request has been considered by the UKVI office, you’ll then be contacted via email if any other document or interview is required.
Please note that your international passport can be submitted between Monday and Friday, from 8.30am to 4.30pm, except on public holidays. Also, keep in mind that late coming means that you have to rebook an appointment. So, be sure to keep to the time stated.
In Nigeria, processing a UK student visa can take up to 28 working days, that is, about 5 to 6 weeks. Also, passports can be collected any day between Mondays and Fridays, and any time from 10.00am to 4.00pm, except on public holidays, of course. When going to collect your passport, go along with all your application documents, your Nigerian ID card, and a photocopy of the biodata page of your international passport.
Applying for a UK student visa costs about £335, but if, however, you spend extra moths, then you will have to pay a surcharge of £150 per year for healthcare while applying for the extension or before your appointment.
If you need a priority visa, then you’ll have to be an additional service charge of £150 in order to shorten the visa processing time to 5 to 7 working days. This service charge can only be paid through the TLS site alone.
UK Visa Application Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos
Teleperformance Contact Processing Services Ltd
First floor, Churchgate Tower II
Plot PC31, Churchgate Street
Telephone: +234 1 2692188-92, +234 1 2615047, +234 1 261020
UK Visa Application Centre, Ikeja, Lagos
Teleperformance Contact Processing Services ltd
5th and 6th Floors, Etiebets place
21 Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way
UK Visa Application Centre, Abuja
Teleperformance Contact Processing Services Ltd
3rd Floor Yakub Plaza
Plot 1129, Zakariya Maimalari street
Opposite War College
Central Business Area.
UK Embassies in Nigeria
The British High Commission, Abuja
19 Torrens Close, Mississippi
Telephone: +234 9 4622200 (local), 020 7008 1500 (international)
Operating hours: Monday to Thursday: 8am to 4pm. Friday: 8am to 1pm.
The British High Commission, Lagos
Consular and Visa Sections
11 Walter Carrington Crescent
Telephone: +234 1 277 0780/0781/0782 (local), 020 7008 1500 (international)
Operating hours: Monday to Thursday: 8.30am to 12noon. Friday: 8.30am to 11am.
Was our post of help? We bet it was! Feel free to share with friends, and stay with us for everything you need to know about foreign admissions: from gist about to schools, to scholarships, to every tiny detail else. Till next time, we wish you all the best as you apply for your visa. Cheers!