THE United Kingdom (UK) has announced an increase in its visas, including tourists and students.
The increase encompasses various visa categories, including up to six months, two, five, and ten-year visit visas.
Fees for entry clearance and specific applications for leave to remain in the UK, such as work and study visas, have also been raised.
Additionally, fees for indefinite leave to enter and remain, health and care visas, settlement priority service, and more have increased, while applications to register and naturalise as a British citizen and the User Pays Visa Application service fee jumped.
According to the UK Home Office, a tourist visa for less than six months will cost £115 (about N111,878.28 ) instead of the initial £15 (14,592.70), effective October 4.
The ICIR reports the rise as above 700 per cent.
Meanwhile, the visa fee will jump from £127 (N123,537.58) to £490 (N476,677.59), making it jump by over 300 per cent.
The Office issued the new fees on Friday, September 15, in a statement titled “New visa fees set to take effect next month.”
The statement said the increase followed the approval of relevant legislation in Parliament.
The government said the changes were intended to safeguard essential services and direct more money towards wage increases for public employees.
The government had announced a fee increase of at least 20 per cent for priority visas, study visas, and certificates of sponsorship in July, in addition to a 15 per cent price hike for most work and visit visas.
Friday’s statement said that the Home Office’s capacity to manage a viable immigration and nationality system depended on the income from fees collected.
“Careful consideration is given when setting fees to help reduce the funding contribution from British taxpayers whilst continuing to provide a service that remains attractive to those wishing to work in the UK and support broader prosperity for all.” the statement stated.
It noted that the settlement priority service would be reduced to align with the cost of using the priority service.
However, the statement noted that subject to parliamentary approval, the immigration and nationality fees would increase from October 4.