Tier 4 General student visa

You can apply for a

Tier 4 General student visa

to study in the UK if you’re 16 or over and you:

have been offered a place on a course
can speak, read, write and understand English
have enough money to support yourself and and pay for your course – the amount will vary depending on your circumstances
are from a country that’s not in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland
meet the other eligibility requirements
When to apply for Tier 4 General student visa
You can apply from 3 months before the start of your course.

You’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks. You can check visa processing times for your country.

Fees for Tier 4 (General) student visa

It costs £322 to apply for this visa from outside the UK.

You must pay £322 per person for any dependants.

You’ll also have to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application. Check how much you’ll have to pay before you apply.

How long you can stay
You can arrive in the UK before your course starts:

up to 1 week before, if your course lasts 6 months or less
up to 1 month before, if your course lasts more than 6 months
How long you can stay depends on the kind of course you’re doing and what study you’ve already completed.

What you can and can’t do

You can:

work as a student union sabbatical officer
apply from inside or outside the UK
apply to extend your stay
work – depending on what level your course is and what kind of sponsor you have

You can’t:

get public funds for Tier 4 General student visa
work as a professional sportsperson, including a sports coach
study at an academy or a local authority-funded school (also known as a maintained school)
You may be able to bring in family members (dependants).