Charges for most types of UK visa will increase later this month as part of the Government’s efforts to make the immigration system self-funded by users by the end of the decade.
The biggest jump is in the cost of settlement and nationality visas, which will increase by 25 per cent. The price for most other applications, including short-term visitor visas and student visas, will be two per cent higher.
The changes are introduced on March 18 and also include a 33 per cent hike for ‘premium’ visa services provided by the Home Office, such as priority visas.
Companies sponsoring an overseas employee for a Tier 2 visa will still pay £1,476 per person, which remains unchanged.
However, a new £25 charge is being introduced to cover the processing of invalid applications. Previously, charges paid for such applications were refunded.
A Home Office spokesman said: “These changes ensure that the Home Office can achieve a self-funding system, whilst continuing to provide a competitive level of service, and a fees structure that remains attractive to businesses, migrants and visitors.”
Indian workers coming to the UK to work will see the biggest changes as they form the largest national group granted Tier 2 visas in 2015. Indians made up 57 per cent of the UK visas granted to skilled workers last year, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics. The next biggest group was workers from the US, who accounted for 11 per cent of the total.
Migrant workers who seek indefinite leave to remain in the UK will see the cost of their visa increase from £1,500 to £1,875. Naturalisation as a British citizen will cost £1,236, up from £1,005. The fees for family and spouse visas are also rising to £1,195 while Adult Dependent Relatives will pay £2,676 for their visas.